The Romney Advantage: Who Needs Grassroots When You Can Afford Astroturf
By Erick Posted in 2008 — Comments (54) / Email this page » / Leave a comment »
The other candidates running for the GOP nomination have run smack into the Romney money advantage today down in Florida. The Young Republicans are having their national
hedonism convention. Somehow or another, I guess by the Executive Committee (the folks I've talked to aren't too sure), the traditional rule that only delegates can vote in the YR straw poll has been changed.
Now, anyone who goes to tonight's dinner can vote in the YR straw poll, a big deviation from the historic pattern and practice.
The dinner's keynote speaker tonight? Mitt Romney.
The dinner's sponsor? Mitt Romney.
The youth Republicans phone banking today to get people out for tonight's dinner were even supplied by Mitt Romney.
The other candidates can't compete with astroturf like that.
Some delegates are expected to make a motion to return the YR straw poll to the way it's always been, or to at least separate out the delegates' votes. Already rumors are circulating that the YR powers that be intend to rule the motion out of order, thereby setting up a parliamentary dispute and an appeal to the convention.
Romney may or may not have the most support at the YR's, but that's not a gamble he has to take with his money advantage.
[UPDATE:] Several people remind me that this is kind of like what happened at the Cobb County GOP BBQ here in Georgia on the 4th. It is a huge annual event complete with straw poll. Romney volunteers loitered around the straw poll ballot table urging people to refrain from voting for Fred Thompson, who still came in first. Romney came in third, behind Ron Paul.
[UPDATE 2:] This just might explain how the rules were changed -- the Executive Director of the Young Republicans is also the St. Johns County Chair for Romney's campaign.