Ron Paul Playing GOP Puppetmaster —But Why?

GOP gadfly is gaming the delegate game, but no one's sure what he wants
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 10, 2012 8:04 AM CDT
Ron Paul Playing GOP Puppetmaster —But Why?
In this Feb. 11, 2012 file photo, Republican presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul, speaks to his supporters following his loss in the Maine caucus to Mitt Romney, in Portland, Maine.   (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty, File)

Ron Paul's campaign has been expertly gaming the GOP primary system, taking advantage of just how boring its behind-the-scenes machinations are to collect more delegates than his vote totals would indicate. Paul's fans have been flooding the otherwise sleepy meetings where state delegates are chosen and electing themselves, the Washington Post explains. So even though Romney won the Maine caucus, for example, Paul took 21 Maine delegates; Romney got one. The question is: Why? What does Paul want?

"By at least holding the threat of embarrassing [Romney] at the convention … they can hope to leverage something," says one professor specializing in convention minutiae. "What that is, I have no earthly idea." Paul has shown little interest in disrupting the convention, but might demand changes to the party platform, or a major speaking spot. And that spot might not be for him. Asked what Paul's push was about, a senior adviser said, "The future. The sun also rises. I'll put it that way. It means the congressman has a son who's a US senator. That's what it means." (More Ron Paul stories.)

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