For at least a year, Ron Paul has been ignored by the media and has been dealing with that resoundingly well. In a move that will give him a little attention in the media – since it fits the message that is often echoed of Mitt Romney being the GOP nominee – Ron Paul announced today in a letter to supporters that he will not campaign for the popular vote in states that have yet to held their primaries.
In his under-reported IDD strategy (“It’s the Delegates, Dummy”), Paul has focused on the fact that presidential nominees are chosen by delegates, not by popular vote. Paul’s campaign has focused to date especially on states that allow committed Republican Party members to have a greater voice in the process. States like Iowa, Nevada, Maine, Louisiana, Washington, and Colorado have been states where Paul supporters have made tremendous inroads in winning party leadership positions and being influential in the national delegate selection process. While many states have yet to finish the delegate selection process, it increasingly looks like Paul could dominate the nationwide delegate process called long ago in Romney’s favor.
Paul’s announcement today fits that same vein, but will no doubt surprise many of his supporters. Not only is Paul saying “It’s the Delegates Dummy” to Mitt Romney and the national media, he is taking it a step further and saying that spending his supporters’ money on winning the popular vote is of such little importance to the campaign that they aren’t going to waste time or money on that any longer.
Does that mean Paul has dropped out? Quit the race? Suspended his campaign? Packed his bags? Returned home to lil ole Lake Jackson, Texas? No, it means quite the opposite. It means that Paul will have more ability to focus on delegate selection instead of the many upcoming winner take all states.
As has been the case from January 3 – the night of the Iowa Caucus – this is a two man race. It’s Mitt Romney v. Ron Paul. Paul, the seasoned campaigner, will be on Romney’s heels through to the RNC in August. If Romney makes 1,144 delegates on the first ballot, Romney becomes the Republican nominee. If Romney slips, the man on his heels will gladly take his place. That’s been the story since Iowa and remains the story today. The decision remains in the hands of 2,286 Republican delegates, many of whom have yet to be chosen. Will it be more of the same or will it be the man who’s spent some 40 years standing on his principle against the GOP establishment both inside DC and out?