Skip to comments.Herman Cain wins Florida straw poll in stunning victory; Rick Perry in deep trouble
Posted on 09/24/2011 5:24:39 PM PDT by iowamark
From the bottom of the polls to the top of the pack, businessman Herman Cain won the Republican Party of Floridas nationally watched presidential straw poll Saturday in a sign that frontrunner Rick Perry is in deep trouble.
Cains victory with 37 percent of the vote was a major defeat for Perry, the frontrunner in Florida and national polls, who garnered only 15 percent after wooing the nearly 3,000 party faithful with a free breakfast and mailers.
The vote also showed how soft Republican support is for Mitt Romney, who came in third with 14 percent. Unlike Perry, though, he avoided schmoozing the GOP voters, called delegates.
"Folks, this is what you call momentum," Cain, the former CEO of Godfathers Pizza, said in a video message from his campaign bus. "The Herman Cain train is picking up steam."
That means more national media attention, heightened standing in the race and access to more fundraisers.
The straw poll is a mock election and doesnt necessarily reflect the sentiment of the voters at large. In past years, it has predicted the partys national nominee, but that streak could be in jeopardy because even some Cain voters had doubts about whether he was ready to be the partys nominee.
Still, the vote is a major indication of how badly damaged Perry was by a poor debate performance Thursday when he fumbled answers and failed to give specifics.
Many straw poll voters were especially dissatisfied by the answers Perry gave over his moderate immigration position, the Ponzi scheme of Social Security and his plan to inoculate girls from human papillomavirus.
I came in thinking Rick Perry, said Tommy Langford,a Gilchrist County commissioner who voted for Cain. I didnt like the debate at all. I really thought Perry lost it. Mitt Romney called him on immigration. He said we have to take care of them. Not if theyre illegal, we dont.
Another big loser: Michele Bachmann, who came in last place. Once a top-tier candidate who won the Iowa straw poll, she has fallen from sight in the debates where she, too, fails to give specifics, excite delegates here or even reach out to them.
Perry issued a written statement congratulating Cain, saying the vote underscored the fact that the conservative message of job creation, fiscal responsibility and limited government is gaining momentum.
Floridians and voters nationally want a candidate who is clear on the issues and talks honestly about the future, Perry said, not someone who takes multiple sides of an issue and changes views every election season. Todays vote demonstrates that Floridians are energized and ready to help get America working again.
Pinellas County delegate Rachelle Warmouth said that, if Perry lost, it wouldnt be the end of his campaign. But when or lose, the debate performance and the effect its having on party loyalists are a call to step up his game.
Hell have to have a strong recovery, she said. He needs to focus on his message.
Warmouths friend, Eileen Blackmer, agreed: He needs to work on the three Cs: Be clear, be concise, be complete.
Lee County delegate Dane Eagle said hes for Romney. He likes the candidates message and polish on stage. And he fears that President Obama would walk all over Perry in debates.
Thats what Obama does, Eagle said. He debates.
St. Johns County delegate Randy Covington said he arrived in Orlando ready to vote for Perry, but the debate "shattered" that plan. Covington decided to support Cain after the businessman"s rousing speech on Saturday at the Conservative Political Action Conference. That event was wedged in between the partys Presidency 5 Thursday debate and Saturday straw poll.
But Convington said he wasnt sure if Cain would or should be the nominee. He said the primary shouldnt be a two-man race.
"We need this process to go on," Covington said.
Gov. Rick Scott, who announced the results from the Orange County Convention Center stage, said the candidates need to take very seriously whatever the results are.
"It shows you something. Florida is important," Scott said from the Orange County Convention Center stage. "It pays to be here."
In a stunning upset Saturday, Herman Cain won Floridas Presidency 5 straw poll, a vote of 2,657 Republican activists that in past years has predicted the party nominee. Here are the results:
Herman Cain: 37 percent
Rick Perry: 15 percent
Mitt Romney: 14 percent
Rick Santorum: 10.9 percent
Ron Paul: 10.4 percent
Newt Gingrich: 8 percent
Jon Huntsman: 2.3 percent
Michelle Bachmann: 1.5 percent""
37-15 Cain over Perry? That’s not just a win, that’s a butt-kicking.
I don’t know if I would stick a fork in Perry quite yet. The bigger story here is that the heir apparent Milty couldn’t even get in second place in a very important state.
That was classy! Notice they didn't say Romney was done despite the fact that the man has been running for years and still got beat by Perry even after the debate.
Sarah’s my #1, Cain #2. If Sarah doesn’t jump in I’m on the Cain Train.
Mitt wouldn’t be trying to muddy the RINO Cowboy’s water by conducting a little Operation Chaos action, would he?
He led the big government RINO and leading candidate from MA by one point more than he led Perry, but Perry is the one in trouble? The media have an interesting perspective on events.
Why does this mean Perry is in trouble and not Romney?
Worth repeating: If Sarah doesnt jump in Im on the Cain Train!
Herman Cain wins Florida straw poll in stunning victory;
Rick Perry in deep trouble
Williard Mitt Romney in deep doodoo
And Cain kicked Romney’s butt even more! :)
“Many straw poll voters were especially dissatisfied by the answers Perry gave over his moderate immigration position”
It was not a moderate answer. It was a classic liberal answer. Amazing that Perry isn’t even conservative enough to even pretend to speak like one.
Still is time for Perry to right his ship. Question remains whether I WANT him to. (I guess I just have no heart. /sarc)
This is certainly a concern. Liberal blood runs in his veins and I would not put it past him.
I would like nothing better than both of them announcing they are leaving the race.
Romney didn’t contest the straw poll, he conceded it to Perry.
The voters had other ideas!
If neither works out I'm focusing on local and state elections.
This just may be the kick Cain needs to get ahead from here on. He’s my man, above all others. I love Sarah, I love Michelle, but I honestly believe in this day and hour, we need a man at the helm (flame away that I’m sexist - not so - it’s just that neither S nor M are a Margaret Thatcher...)
Taking another risk, I’ll post what I said in another thread:
Cain is the one for me: Straight shooter with solutions that can out-debate almost anyone; true blue conservative & Christian; proven executive with turn-around expertise; brilliant, articulate, counters with between-the-eyes strikes, ALWAYS directly answers the question asked of him, and he’d get at least 40% of the black vote. His answers always #1. Identify the problem; #2. Explains the solutions. Lastly he disarms the liberal claims that to oppose Obama is racist.
He’d clobber Obama in any debates because O would have his TOTUS.
I don’t like his 9% national sales tax (all libs have to do is later double it), but it’s better than what we have now and does solve a LOT of problems.
I do believe Cain is the MAN of the hour above all others...