The Kuyperian Commentary

Politics, Economics, Culture, and Theology with a Biblical Viewpoint

Romney’s Loss: The Ron Paul Factor

by Adam McIntosh

As expected, I’ve already seen numerous Facebook posts blaming Ron Paul supporters for Romney’s defeat on election night. Since the majority of Paul supporters abstained or voted third party, it is concluded that they swung the election in Obama’s favor. How ironic, that after being marginalized and cheated during the primary process, now they supposedly decided the election! Yes, there were those who tried guilt-tripping Paul’s base to vote for Romney, despite all of his shenanigans. But not even Rand Paul’s endorsement could convince Paul supporters to seal the deal for Romney.

The question must be asked: if Paul’s supporters are so large as to swing an election, then why wouldn’t Romney reach out to them? It’s as though Romney thought he could beat Obama with the evangelical vote alone, while running on Obama’s weaknesses alone. Neither strategy is beneficial to winning an election. Romney refused to reach out to Paul supporters, independents, third party voters, and anti-war voters. He never positioned himself as different from Obama in any significant sense. If blame is to be placed anywhere, it is with him and his campaign.

Obama’s re-election is no surprise to Paul supporters. Since the beginning of the primary season, they had been saying that Paul was the candidate most likely to beat Obama in a general election. Fox News panelists agreed that the GOP couldn’t win without Paul’s supporters (see here and here). Romney never cared to heed that advice.

So, would Romney have won with the Ron Paul vote? We’ll never know. But it’s a fact that he was unelectable without it.


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2 thoughts on “Romney’s Loss: The Ron Paul Factor

  1. Romney intelligently chose to appeal to the more numerous centrists rather than attempt to exchange their numerous votes for the scanty numbers on the far right fringe. There was real danger that centrists were actually going to vote for Obama, while the few Libertarian/Constitution folks would merely have either abstained or cast irrelevant ballots. Thus a centrist won from the Democratic camp was worth two Paulites. Romney positioned himself intelligently. Future Repubs will have to shift to the left to compete, since the entire electorate us shifting left. It is possible that it will never again be politically viable to be percieved as anti-gay on the national stage.

  2. It was impossible once Romney got the nomination. Paul wouldn’t have accepted a VP offer. The only shot the republican party had was to run a true, hardcore conservative (like Paul) or someone ideologically near enough that Paul could have and would have been a running mate. The American people recognized that they did not have a real choice.

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