Politics & Policy

Perry’s Debate Performance May Have Cost Him Straw Poll Win

Orlando, Fla. — Rick Perry has made it clear he’d like to win tomorrow’s Presidency 5 straw poll in Florida. He’s hosting a breakfast for all 3,500 delegates and has a leadership team lead by Florida House speaker Dean Cannon working to get a Perry win.  He’s also sent out direct mail to the delegates who will vote in the poll.

This puts him in direct contrast with Mitt Romney, whose name will be on that ballot, but is not formally participating.

Al Cardenas, a former Florida GOP chair and chairman of the American Conservative Union, predicts that despite his campaign’s efforts, Perry might have just lost his chance at a straw poll win in the past few days.

“If you ask me, I would have said three days ago that Perry’s going to be a runaway winner in this forum.  I’m not so sure anymore,” Cardenas says. “Rick Perry’s probably going to lose a few. He may still have the most, but it’s not as clear cut as I thought a week ago.”

“Ron Paul’s going to have his supporters,” Cardenas adds. “I don’t believe they’ll be a majority, but they’ll be a good number. Romney’s probably getting some folks during this weekend that he didn’t plan to have.”

Cardenas’s prediction is bad news for Perry. It will be a rocky week for his campaign if he both turns in a weak debate performance and loses this straw poll.

Katrina TrinkoKatrina Trinko is a political reporter for National Review. Trinko is also a member of USA TODAY’S Board of Contributors, and her work has been published in various media outlets ...


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