I'm answering your questions about the Southern Republican Leadership Conference.
In a surprise, Mitt Romney edged out Ron Paul to win the SRLC straw poll by a single vote.
Reading from a speech, sounding more subdued than he has in previous addresses to activists, RNC Chairman Michael Steele used his closing remarks at the SRLC to make some grudging admissions about the gaffes and scandals that have bedeviled his leadership for the past two weeks.
Even when he was running for president, Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) didn't really give presidential campaign speeches.He wasn't much for pointing people to social networks, asking for votes, or -- especially -- mentioning other candidates. He didn't stop for applause. He lectured. And that's what he did here, before a stratified SRLC crowd, as some baffled Republican activists walked out and (largely youthful) Paul fans trickled in.
Gov. Haley Barbour (R-Miss.) crystallized the mood here at the SRLC, telling the crowd again and again not to "care a whit" about who the 2012 GOP nominee might be.
NEW ORLEANS -- Supporters of Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.), who've been moving into the conference today to hear their man speak, have made their presence known with noisy shouts of disapproval when SRLC speakers deliver more bellicose rhetoric. During a...