The boos, Ron Paul in his own words, and Morning Joe commentary:
The Next Right, Why Ron Paul's CPAC Victory is Good for the Movement. In terms of organizing, conservatives can learn a lot from libertarians. Online, the moneybomb concept originally pioneered during the Ron Paul campaign has started to work for more conventional Republicans like Scott Brown.
The 2008 Ron Paul campaign can be compared to the 1988 Pat Robertson campaign in helping a movement find its way into the Republican Party and thus establishing itself as a permanent fixture in the party. Like Robertson, Paul did not come anywhere near capturing the nomination, but the influence of Christian conservatives -- and now libertarians -- endures.
Rush Limbaugh: All I'll tell you is that any organization that has a straw poll vote on who the party presidential candidate ought to be and comes up with Ron Paul is not an organization of conservatives. I just tell you. Something's haywire there. I know the Ron Paul people go in there, but they had been attendees to get in there. Ron Paul winning a straw poll at a conservative conference?
Carpe Diem, Dr Paul! by Mark R. Crovelli at Lew Rockwell.com: Ron Paul’s stunning landslide victory in the CPAC straw poll is an event that cannot be allowed to go to waste. Political moments this ripe are about as rare as the California condor, and Ron Paul would do us all an incalculable service if he would seize the day, and declare his intention to run in the 2012 presidential election. He needs to do this right now. Not next month, not next year, but now.
Jamie Weinstien columnists at Town Hall: Paul was received like a rock star at CPAC. Attendees burst into applause at various times throughout his speech, must notably when he stated that America should “end the Fed.” Who knew that so many people not only had a strong grasp of monetary policy, but also found monetary policy an exciting political issue?
Paul’s victory in the CPAC straw poll is likely not reflective of how he would do in the Republican primary. It is reflective, however, of the concern of many CPACers, and Americans as a whole, of the ballooning deficits and out of control spending in Washington.
Red State points out, "only 2,395 CPAC registrants voted in the CPAC poll. It’s the largest number of votes in CPAC straw polling history, but but less than 25% of the total turnout at CPAC" and "48% of the votes cast were from students."
Paul Mulshine of The Star Ledger at NJ.com writes, "It's encouraging to see that this convention of self-identified conservatives has finally tapped into the true American conservative tradition of small government and limited powers running back through Barry Goldwater to Robert Taft and of course Washington and Jefferson." He says Paul will be a "major force in 2012."
The Huffington Post says, "What it portends for a possible 2012 presidential run is anyone's guess. Paul had a similar cult-like following during the 2008 election, only to garner a relatively small chunk of the actual vote."
The Politico says, "Paul’s victory renders a straw poll that was already lightly contested among the likely 2012 GOP hopefuls all but irrelevant, as the 74-year-old Texan is unlikely to be a serious contender for his party’s nomination." And, points out "CPAC organizers were plainly embarrassed by the results." Politico also points out that the result was greeted by boos when the result was announced.
National Review OnLine reports: "There may have been some boos, but Paul was by far one of the more popular speakers at CPAC this year. “End the Fed!” was one of most-heard chants and his “Campaign for Liberty” group was everywhere. Heck, a lot of the time, it seemed like they, not the American Conservative Union, was CPAC’s host. Even Ann Coulter, who drew a huge crowd herself, felt compelled to give a shout out to Paul-mania, saying she agreed with everything he stands for outside of foreign policy — a statement met with cheers."
Real Clear Politics says, "the sense that Paul supporters flooded the vote will lead other Republican presidential water-testers to easily discount the results. A straw poll that will be conducted at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference this April in New Orleans will be taken much more seriously among those involved with and eagerly watching the presidential sweepstakes."