Rand Paul Wins CPAC Straw Poll By a Mile Takes 31% of vote to Ted Cruz's 11% By Matt Cantor, Newser User Posted Mar 8, 2014 6:10 PM CST 135 comments Comments Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., speaks at the Conservative Political Action Committee annual conference in National Harbor, Md., Friday, March 7, 2014. Friday marks the second day of the annual Conservative Political... (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) (Newser) – For the second time in as many years, Rand Paul has won the presidential straw poll at the Conservative Political Action Conference. This year, he took 31% of the vote, far ahead of second-place Ted Cruz, who received 11%, the Washington Post reports. Behind Cruz were ex-neurosurgeon Ben Carson, with 9%, and Chris Christie, who scored a standing ovation at the conference, with 8%. The Post notes that the poll may not hold a lot of weight, since CPAC attendees make up just a small portion of the GOP. But the 2,500 who voted "typically hold outsized influence in the GOP's presidential selection process," notes the AP.