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Iowa Straw Poll: Brownback's Subtle Dig at Romney

AMES, Iowa -- Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback closed out the formal candidate speeches to Iowa Republicans gathered here, delivering an address that focused on pro-growth economic policies and strengthening family values.

"I will rebuild the American family," pledged Brownback. He drew loud applause for a story about an encounter about Mother Theresa in which she repeatedly said: "All for Jesus." Ditto for his pledge if elected to provide a fifth Supreme Court vote to overturn Roe v. Wade.

Brownback, like Mike Huckabee before him, seemed to take a subtle shot at Mitt Romney, the favorite to win today's straw poll. The race should be about "principles not on personalities," Brownback said. He added: "We win when we stand on principles."

Brownback's speech came roughly two hours before voting closes for the day here and three hours before the results are announced. The Kansas senator has much riding on the straw poll's outcome, having spent considerable resources -- both financial and staff-wise -- in a bid to win or finish a strong second behind Romney. We'll know whether it worked in a few hours.

For what's it's worth, The Fix thought Huckabee gave the best speech of the day. It might not matter one whit since it's hard to imagine there are a lot of undecided voters here today, but the former Arkansas governor yet again proved he is the most deft orator of the bunch.

By Chris Cillizza  |  August 11, 2007; 4:56 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Next: Straw Poll Results ... Still Waiting ... And Waiting

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