The Trail: A Daily Diary of Campaign 2008


Republican Party

Paul Handily Wins Virginia Straw Poll

Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) convincingly won a straw poll Saturday night at the Virginia Republican Party Advance, an annual conference in Crystal City that drew about 500 state party leaders and activists.

The poll followed a series of speeches by surrogates representing each of the GOP presidential candidates. Voting was open to any Virginia resident who paid $35.

Paul drew 38 percent of the vote after bringing in supporters from all corners of the state.

"It means we've got the strength to go the next step to take on the primary in Virginia," said Dennis Fusaro, Paul's national field director. "It shows our great organization. We won with a combination of people new to the process and the people who have been involved in the party a long time."

Former senator Fred Thompson finished second, with 23 percent of the vote. Among his supporters in Crystal City was former Virginia senator George Allen (R), who told conference-goers, "Fred Thompson believes common sense is not very common in Washington D.C."

Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee came in third with 11 percent of the vote. Former New York City mayor Rudolph Giuliani finished fourth with 9 percent.

A Washington Post poll of Republican voters in Virginia, conducted in October, found Giuliani with an early lead over the rest of the GOP field.

Virginia's presidential primary is Feb. 12.

-- Tim Craig

Posted at 7:32 PM ET on Dec 1, 2007  | Category:  Republican Party
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I am so happy that Virginians have Ron Paul in first place. He is a genuine man and is the voice of the Goldwater/Reagan wing of the Republican party.

P.s. I live in Richmond, VA; am a served Naval officer; and would be glad to show myself (peacefully) to "mr. rat" in person so that he sees that the Ron Paul support is genuine, not a spam phenomon (the money raised shows that too).

Posted by: gb_palmer | January 2, 2008 11:46 PM

if mitt wins, we can all have multiple wives!

Posted by: inedal | December 23, 2007 6:07 PM

I went to lunch with Ron Paul over twenty years ago (1983, I think), and I can say this. He is as genuine in person as he appears on tv.

Look, no matter how long Ron Paul is in office, he doesn't even think of himself as a politician. He thinks of himself as a Doctor first and last. I think he looks on his time in politics as a sacrifice (being away from his profession) in order to do his duty as a citizen to come to the aid of his country.

Ron Paul is the real deal. And I thought I was the only one who liked him. And I'm not even working for him. In fact, I haven't given a dollar to his campaign. Never thought he had a chance, really.

Regarding Barry Goldwater, Jr., I saw that (on You-Tube, I think) speech Ron Paul gave at Barry Goldwater Jr.'s house (I think). It looked so ordinary and simple a meeting and talk to people. I thought. He's great but no one would want someone like him. He's not slick enough.

Boy, did the American people show me up.

Posted by: santafe2 | December 4, 2007 9:44 AM

A local attorney Chris Kackouroff gave the address. You can watch it here:

It was truly inspirational, brought tears to my eyes, and his passion showed the GOP establishment the honest zeal held by all Ron Paul supporters of Liberty.

Posted by: garbo120 | December 3, 2007 12:00 PM

LOL-One of these days I might bother to Proof read!

be A possible Statesman!

Posted by: rat-the | December 3, 2007 11:45 AM

LOL! I Mean literally LOL!

What part of I think Dr. Ron"NO" Paul has SOME good ideas, don't you Parrots understand? What I do not want, is either a Spoiler, or if elected, an Outsider obstructionist of the First degree being a four Year LAME DUCK!

As An actual Doctor-one involved with the Military System, I believe if nothing else, Dr. Paul and john McCain working in Romney and Huck's Cabinet, could perform Miricles for our Nation's Military Hospital System, while doing a MUCH better job helping our Private Practice, than the Bought by the Insurance Lobbies Clinton!

Is being in the White House for SURE, not a better approach than Fighting to be to possible Statesman?

WAKE UP Conservatives! Divided we fall!

Posted by: rat-the | December 3, 2007 11:42 AM

Dr. Paul does not mean he will pull our troops out of Iraq in a day - he wants to do it in an organized manner which he has admitted that it could take months - or even a year. Regardless, he would start withdrawing immediately.

Posted by: susanvcu | December 3, 2007 11:03 AM

rat-the wrote:
"I have Left clicked too many of you so-called Numerous Supporters of Dr. NO, and found newly created User ID's..."

Yes it is amazing. I myself have hardly ever joined these discussion forums and now I find I am compelled to register to discuss politics. For once in all my life, I am 42, I feel I can contribute to a worthy presidential candidate for world peace.

One of the things that gained my attention of Ron Paul was the huge amount of intelligent debate regarding his ideas. The usual name calling was not present in the discussions. Anyone who can bring people together like that must have a worthwhile message.

I strongly recommend you Google Ron Paul and look at what he has to say.

BTW rat-the, aaron balint is my real name.

Posted by: aaron.balint | December 3, 2007 6:17 AM

oh yeah "rat"...

No spamming here son.

Just some good old-fashioned free-thinking, using my rights which I value very preciously.

I guess you don't seem to value yours much wanting to vote for more of the same.


Posted by: unmarked017 | December 3, 2007 2:59 AM

to the rat who keeps posting here:
YOU DO NOT have a grasp on what is really going on here. Your leaders are eventually on the way out.
To the rest of the freethinking people:
Ron Paul and the people who believe that the change that is necessary for our country to get back on track, know that it lies within the document our forefathers created some 200 years ago. READ IT. It holds many truths that have been forgotten. If it is not this election that we eradicate this current non-working system, it will be another one soon. Hopefully before something dreadful happens. We need to re-unite as a nation and rally towards a better future (not just for corporate America), and become the great nation once again that we were viewed as by the rest of the world. Consider the foriegn policy of one of our greatest leaders (a republican I might add, although not a NeoCon) Theodore Roosevelt, who was about a truly conservative stance in the world, "Walk softly, and carry a big stick." This nonsense of "McPolitician" saying, "isolationism is in the league of Hitler", is absolutely ridiculous. It is more of the slanderous BS that we've all seen in recent decades from both red and blue.
THINK FOR YOURSELF SHEEPLE!!! Don't be led by fools such as the rat to think that Ron Paul is foolhardy enough to commit ourselves to something not good for the USA. He is a proud American, and a patriot for standing up for what is right. Investigate for yourself. God Bless and vote Ron Paul!!!

From a very independent, free-thinking, and patriotic man who believes in what the good Dr. is trying to do.

Posted by: unmarked017 | December 3, 2007 2:52 AM

About the spamming, I think that it is just because he does have so many young supporters and for some reason there's always some that think they are really doing some good by flooding things via the internet. But I dont think it means he doesn't have millions of true supporters that are donating and going to vote for him. If you look at how many more meetup groups he has on than any other candidate and how they are actually meeting in masses and supporting him then you see that its not just the internet.

Posted by: zacreeves | December 3, 2007 1:10 AM

Stop !!! Ron Paul is not AntiWar !! He's anti Bush foreign policy.
He's for keeping us the strongest military strength in the world.
Lets fight the war and win it. If it's not declared it ain't legal. This isn't about your feelings, it's about our Constitution. Read the Constitution.
Let's all try to get on the same page and save this Country..


Posted by: midijack | December 2, 2007 2:58 PM

drd6000-I am actaually aware of some of my relatives in Houston who like Ron Paul. I do not dispute he has support. I am only saying that much of the support he gets is based on Half informed opinions, and heated rhetoric. As I got into the details involved in a sudden withdrawl of Our Troops in Iraq, my Cousin very quickly had to conceed the absolute stupidity of the stance he liked!
It would be dissasterous and absolutely BONE-HEADED!

However, I believe Ron Paul does have many unique views, as I tend to also pull out of my hat, and would be a very valuable addition to a Cabinet of what I am coming to view as best behind a more re-unified Ticket of Romney/ Huckleberry! "Huck", left out would do more "Spoiling" than even Ron Paul!

There is so much at stake in this election, I FEAR a divided Base! The Dims have the MSM in their Pockets! I also believe that the Exectutives have unique strengths, that are much better COMBINED!

To abandon the Exectutive Branch to Congress, a Congress with 11% approval for crying out loud!, is INSANE!

Then, ask any person in bushie's Staff about how much the Job entails! It will REQUIRE a group effort to Fix the messes, and guide the country at the same time!

I suport Mitt Romney for his Proven Abilities as a Statesman! He is not so rigid as to NOT listen to Ron Paul's advice!

Heck, he'll even listen to me!

McCain, is another excellent Cabinet Member, and I'd love to see Colin back in as Secretary of State!-maybe move Condi into a Cabinet Post! The two Parties are definitely SPLIT by Candidates affiliations. Exectutives, and Legislators.

For the sake of this Country, we need to keep the Exectutive branch away from Congress(Legislators)-Think Legislation by the Judicial Bench is Bad? So do I! We do not need a Pro Invasorio President appointing Libbie Judges!

We need to Unite, and work as One!

Giuliani?-Only in New York, could he be considered a Republican!

Spamming, does hurt Dr.NO's credibility though!

Posted by: rat-the | December 2, 2007 2:01 PM


Ron Paul now has over 90,000 unique DONORS in just the past two months alone. Are they fake too?

If you really doubt whether Ron Paul has any supporters, search "Ron Paul rally" on You are in for a rude awakening.

Posted by: drd6000 | December 2, 2007 1:03 PM

It's so great to know that Virginia is a state of freedom loving people. There is no choice but the man with over 30 years in Congress, the man who is scrupulously honest, and way ahead of his time. He's been sharing the same philosophies and ideas since the 80's and finally the American people have caught on.

As this grassroots joyful message of peace continues to expand, America is headed out of the swamp and back to greatness. Go, Dr. Paul, Go!

Posted by: elleanee | December 2, 2007 1:00 PM

When a candidate is raising the most money, drawing the biggest crowds, attracting the most volunteers, and winning his party's straw polls, shouldn't he be called the front runner?

Why then does the media persist in calling him a long shot?

I suppose they are relying on random telephone surveys, but those are deeply flawed, and less objective than the measures outlined above. The polls under-represent those who have only cell phones (younger voters), those who screen their calls (people concerned about their privacy), and those who don't normally vote in the primaries.

Gee, that sounds like all the groups the polls are under-representing are... Ron Paul supporters.

On top of that, the polls ask people who they are voting for, when most of those asked haven't really decided (and just pick a name to get the call over with.)

Posted by: drd6000 | December 2, 2007 1:00 PM

OK, aaron.balint. I have Left clicked too many of you so-called Numerous Supporters of Dr. NO, and found newly created User ID's with the sole intention of Spamming for Dr.NO.
In Texas, the EXACT same GARBAGE was pulled to keep Rick Perry in by "Spoiling" the Democrats, with Kinky Freidman, and all his REVOLUTIONARY, and Popular Ideas!

Just as some suspect Clinton's supporters of handing out Campaign Finace money(Rio Grande Valley) to People in the loop to contribute as Their own(Ethics my butt!), I can see where a Sorros type could easily buy a bunch of Pollitical Hacks, to go out and make as big a fake ruckus as they can, and contribute Money given them to contribute!

Not that I have any proof of this, other than speculations about the activities of the numbers of faily poor people, somehow all able to make maximum contributions, all because they Like an employer(What's that smell?), that I have heard others suggest. What I am saying, is if Ron Paul has legitimate support, they would not have to resort to Spamming!

Oh, and BTW-You Dr.NO people LOVE this section, it is one of the FEW, I cannot access your Home Pages!
What's that SMELL?


Posted by: rat-the | December 2, 2007 12:44 PM

Posted by: jadbal | December 2, 2007 11:46 AM

Thanks for the article. I hope it ran in the print edition.

This is a great win for Ron Paul considering how much of the party establishment attended.

Posted by: Matt4RonPaul | December 2, 2007 9:21 AM

Congratulations Virginia Republicans for choosing Congressman Ron Paul for President. He is America's hope for peace, prosperity and freedom. His dedication to the US Constitution is needed.

Posted by: whitfieldg_kr | December 2, 2007 7:34 AM

rat-the wrote:
"180 losers showed up for an insignificant event..."

Hello rat-the, great to see you are doing your own research on the American political process. Please explain further why the 180 people who showed up were losers and as to why the event was insignificant? I'm sure the other people reading these comments would like to know your deeper thoughts.

Posted by: aaron.balint | December 2, 2007 5:54 AM

Go, Ron Paul, go!!!

God bless America!!!

Posted by: veritas81aequitas | December 2, 2007 4:47 AM

Squaawwk, Dr. Pinochio-No! 4,4,4 Pinochio's

Squuuuawk Pinochio No-No Dr.No-No!

Pinochio Dr. No-No!

Squaaawwwwk! No-NO Dr.Pinochiono-no, NO-NO!

Posted by: rat-the | December 2, 2007 12:36 AM

It seems "the rat" has it all backwards (even his name "rat-the"). The only losers are the ones who cannot, or refuse to see that times are changing and that WE are gaining strength to put this country back together. GO Dr. GO. GO, GO, Dr. GO, GO.

Posted by: unmarked017 | December 2, 2007 12:31 AM

180 losers showed up for an insignificant event that costed a whopping $35!

I hope Dr. No's losers did not go into hock trying to seem like they mean anything!

Squawk! Dr. No, Dr. NO!

No, No Dr. NO-NO!

Posted by: rat-the | December 2, 2007 12:18 AM

"If Ron Paul were not anti-war, none of us would recognize his name.

Posted by: zukermand "

But he IS anti-war, and almost everyone DOES recognize his name. And he IS winning these straw polls; he IS getting record donations; he IS a front runner.

Posted by: busamadman | December 2, 2007 12:03 AM

If Ron Paul were not anti-war, none of us would recognize his name.

Posted by: zukermand | December 1, 2007 11:51 PM

I know that Mrs. Huckabee spoke for her Husband and that Pat Buchanan's sister spoke for Tom Tancredo. But who spoke for Ron Paul?
Would be interesting to know.

Posted by: nospam3 | December 1, 2007 10:47 PM

Fred Thompson is right about Washington, and he is no exception. Ron Paul is no longer a long shot, he's the frontrunner.

Posted by: alexro379 | December 1, 2007 10:18 PM

This is a very telling victory as one of Fred Thomspson's campaign Co-chairs is the former Governor and Senator of VA. George Allen who is obviously pretty dialed into the state party. Thompson should have won it handily! Liberty is brewing. Three cheers for Virginia!

Posted by: UCRP2025 | December 1, 2007 9:52 PM

So glad to hear from ex-Sen. Macaca. At least now I know who NOT to vote for.

Posted by: bamydood | December 1, 2007 9:38 PM

Well it's about time these GOP straw poll wins of Dr Paul get some national exposure! So far Dr Ron Paul has finished:
-in the top 3 in 82.9% of the straw polls (34 out of 41)
-in the top 2 in 65.8% of the straw polls (27 out of 41)
-1st in 51.2% of the straw polls (21 out of 41)
The data above is already out of date, with some more wins for Dr Paul this week, but the site gives a great deal of data showing the support he has across the nation.

Posted by: DrBrianHorsfield | December 1, 2007 9:22 PM

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