When I heard the results of the CPAC voting I was rather surprised (as probably most everyone was), and then I saw a video of them announcing Paul as the winner and there were boos, and it seemed a bit odd. But a while ago I saw a longer version of the video, that doesn’t just show them announcing the winner, but announcing all the results. After many in the crowd boo Paul, the announcer guy mentions that Mitt Romney came in second, and the crowd just EXPLODES into cheers. Thats when it all made sense. The Romney folks stuck around to hear the results, believing, quite reasonably, they were going to win just like they had three years in a row. And when they heard they had finished second they reacted like grade-schoolers throwing a temper-tantrum. My candidate came in third, and there is no doubt in my mind that I wouldn’t have behaved like that at all had I been there. Their guy did even better, he beat everybody but one, and yet they still acted like spoiled brats. It reminded me of the smear campaign that certain Romney folks engaged in against Sarah Palin after she was selected over Romney to be VP, the vicious campaign that almost destroyed her, and no doubt played a BIG role in the ultimate defeat of the McCain-Palin ticket. Its time that some of the Romney people learn that they’re not special, they’re no different from you or me, and they should follow the same rules of class and decency that the rest of us follow. I know that most Romney people aren’t like that of course, but today’s behavior just reminded me of what they did to Governor Palin in 2008, and I suppose Im still a bit peeved about that 🙂 . It really would be much better for everybody though, if they would learn to show the same grace and class that everybody else shows when they don’t get what they want. Its not like the rest of us don’t know what its like to lose at something, it happens to everybody.
The worst part about it for the true Romney fans who are well behaved and are good people (as of course most Romney supporters are), is that not only does this behavior make you look bad, it makes your candidate look bad. Paul won by virtue of a massive vote from young people, a group that voted heavily for Obama, but moved to Paul after they soured on Obama. They’re very much a swing voting group, and one that Romney will want to win if he becomes the nominee. If they see Romney as just another spoiled rich guy because of the actions of his supporters, thats obviously going to hurt him bigtime. Even more importantly than that though, these are people who agree with us as Republicans, whoever you support for President in 2012, on a LOT of issues, and I would MUCH rather us give them a good impression of Republicans in general so that regardless of who we nominate in 2012 and beyond, they will stay with us and be part of a winning Coaltion for years, even decades to come. That is FAR more important than who wins a straw poll, and far FAR more important than somebody’s desire to act out their frustrations on national television.