Why Are We Making All This Noise About Straw Polls A Year Before The Election ?

Dewey Defeats Truman

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Many of us are not thriving in President Obama’s economy. I understand that. I also understand that there is something in human nature that wants bad things to end. However, we have somehow descended into a political system that is in campaign mode all the time. The presidential campaign starts the day after a new president is elected. We need to stop that. I realize it gives us more time to size up the candidates, but other than the political junkies, no one will be paying attention until next June anyway. What has happened to our political system?

There was a Republican straw poll in Florida yesterday (the day after the Republican debate). Yesterday’s Washington Times reported that Herman Cain received 37 percent of the more than 2,600 votes cast.

Another Washington Times story posted the numbers for all the candidates:

Herman Cain, 37.1%
Rick Perry, 15.4%
Mitt Romney, 14.0%
Rick Santorum, 10.9%
Ron Paul, 10.4%
Newt Gingrich, 8.4%
Jon Huntsman, 2.3%
Michele Bachmann, 1.5%

William Kristol at the Weekly Standard posted an article partially explaining the results. He points out that even though Rick Perry did not do well in the debate, the disappointed voters did not move their support to Mitt Romney. Mr. Kristol also points out that the debate and straw poll will result in Rick Santorum and Herman Cain both getting more serious consideration by the voters. Mr. Kristol also suggests that a lot of people will be carefully watching Chris Christie’s Reagan Library speech on Tuesday.

The bottom line here is that the debates are not necessarily constructive at this time. They are something of a ‘gotcha’ game where the Democrat party can do opposition research. I really question the wisdom of starting the debate process this early.




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