Opinion: Ron Paul loses worse than even Obama in West Virginia


This article was originally on a blog post platform and may be missing photos, graphics or links. See About archive blog posts.

Not a good day for Rep. Ron Paul.

Everybody was watching the overwhelming of Illinois Sen. Barack Obama by New York Sen. Hillary Clinton on the ongoing Democratic side of the partisan primary struggles in West Virginia yesterday. But over on the Republican primary battlefield with 98% of the votes counted, the 72-year-old Paul was overwhelmed by the presumptive GOP nominee, Sen. John McCain of Arizona.

Paul gathered in only 5% of the vote, a lousy 5,812 ballots.

That’s about 1/17th as many votes as those received by the dread enemy, the 71-year-old Arizonan, McCain, who got 87,786 ballots.


Paul even got thumped by ex-Gov. Mike Huckabee, who isn’t running anymore and hasn’t been for weeks and was actually acting as a commentator on MSNBC. Huckabee got more than twice as many votes as the Texas congressman, 11,896, or 10%. And he’d already won most of West Virginia’s GOP delegates back in that winter state convention deal with the Paul people to head off the Massachusetts Mormon.

Former Gov. Mitt Romney, another GOP also-ran, also came close to nipping Paul, who’s having more luck selling his bestselling new book than his way-behind-the-crowd candidacy. Romney got 5,062 votes, or 4%. Rudy Giuliani -- remember him, the former New York mayor? -- received 2%, or 2,777 votes. So Paul did beat him again.

Paul also beat Alan Keyes, who in 2004 did such an impressive job as the Republican candidate of terminating the political career of that up-and-comer named Obama in the Illinois U.S. Senate race. Keyes got 1,389 West Virginia votes, 1%.

Out in Nebraska, Paul did somewhat better, copping 13% of the vote (17,587) to McCain’s 87% (117,529). Which, according to The Ticket’s calculations, means McCain won.

But as Paul’s vocal supporters are fond of pointing out, it’s not about winning the Republican nomination. It’s about something else, which they’ll be happy to explain in the comments section below where they are always welcome.

--Andrew Malcolm