Herman Cain Might Actually Deliver

Are straw polls that different from primaries?
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 28, 2011 10:22 AM CDT
Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain speaks prior to Florida's President 5 straw poll at the Orange County Convention Center on September 24, 2011 in Orlando, Florida.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – It’s getting tough to “separate fact from farce” in the GOP presidential debate, writes Dana Milbank of the Washington Post. Former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain, for instance, recently said he might actually use the goofy “I will deliver” motto SNL made up for him. So the question is, was Cain’s Florida straw poll win the real deal? Most experts are betting farce, since Cain’s only polling at 7% nationally—some have even called it “the end of straw polls.” But Milbank isn’t so sure.

“Straw polls are tilted by a small and unrepresentative sample of voters choosing the most ideological candidates,” he writes. In other words, they’re “a close approximation of the Republican primary electorate.” Heck, the Iowa caucus, which attracted just 120,000 voters in 2008, essentially is a straw poll. And Cain is capitalizing on his momentum, putting out a book and meeting with people like Donald Trump and Ed Koch. “At this pace, Cain’s ultimate triumph—a guest-hosting gig on SNL—is just a matter of time," Milbank writes.

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