Marc Ambinder has the results:

  1. Romney 31.5%
  2. Huckabee 18.1%
  3. Brownback 15%
  4. Tancredo in 13.7%
  5. Ron Paul with 9%

The rest were single digits.

My read is that social conservatives are split, and immigration is really important. The fact that Huckabee + Brownback is greater than Romney will be noticed. At best, you can argue that conservatives are leaning Romney. Thompson will get in and take votes from Romney, whose support is soft.

We are moving in to a weird situation with the conservative votes getting split many different ways. At the same time, Cox, Hunter, Thompson, etc. all need to get out. Ron Paul doesn’t really get a bump.

The interesting dynamic going forward will be whether Brownback and Huckabee go after each other or they go after Romney. Or Fred Thompson…

Giuliani (and to a lesser extent McCain) has got to be thrilled. With no clear opponent coming out of this, although Romney is the strongest, he can go forward, while the conservatives in the race still have to figure out how to cut up the field for themselves.

In other news, the Dems are pointing out that the Romney campaign was soliciting Democratic campaign staffers to vote for Romney.

UPDATE: A reader compares Romney to Bush 1999 and finds that Bush had 50 fewer buses but 4k more votes. One way to read this is is that Romney’s votes were all machine votes, not undecideds coming. The argument against is that the turnout is low, so the only people who showed up were delivered on buses, etc.

UPDATE II: Patrick Ruffini points out how disappointing this was for Romney:

Mitt Romney wins, but by just a shade more than George W. Bush did in 1999 when facing Steve Forbes, who threw millions at the straw poll, and against a far more formidable Ames field overall.

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8 Comments

sampo · August 11, 2007 at 11:42 PM

Fun with numbers:

Romney gets 2900 fewer votes than Bush in 2000.
The occupants of at least 1,750 of Romney’s bus seats that showed up at Ames either voted for another candidate, or were empty.
Romney would have lost by 400 votes to runner up Steve Forbes in 2000.
Romney was unable to deliver a mortal wound to Sam Brownback who is sure to question Romney’s integrity for many weeks to come.

One wonders, would Ames more aptly compare to Romney’s management of the olympics in Utah or the Big Dig disaster in his own state.

Rachel · August 12, 2007 at 2:27 PM

Mitt always wins when he can buy/pay for the votes.

Thats about it.

goodwyne · August 12, 2007 at 3:06 PM

I think your read is a little off. The Iowa straw poll is about buying votes. That’s how the party raises money there. Romney spent like mad. He had almost every bus in the state. He was favored to win big but he didn’t! Romney claims to be happy but he has to be pretty disappointed that he didn’t run away with it. He gets very little out of this.

Huckabee, on the other hand, gets a BIG bump! Fred Thompson has to be looking at this and thinking maybe he’s waited too long.

I’ve been a Thompson supporter but I like Huckabee a lot and he looks like he could break through to the top tier. I may be rethinking my Thompson support.

Iowa Ames Straw Poll: Like Mike? | MY Vast Right Wing Conspiracy · August 12, 2007 at 12:51 AM

[…] More at the candidates’ blogs (Huckabee, Romney), Patrick Ruffini at Hugh Hewitt’s, Eye on ‘08, Marc Ambinder, and Hot Air. […]

Spinning Ames « Cadillac Tight · August 12, 2007 at 9:20 AM

[…] 12th, 2007 · No Comments Liz Mair: My friend Soren Dayton rightly notes that if you combine Huckabee’s votes andBrownback’s votes, you more than equal Romney’s votes– which can’t be a great sign for Romney. Of course, then again, that would have been true for Bush in 1999, too– but then as I’ve alluded to, that wouldn’t be such a surprising result in a year when all the big dogs played at Ames, which this year, they did not. […]

Iowa Voice · August 12, 2007 at 9:29 AM

Straw Poll Round-Up…

As promised, here is round-up of blogosphere reactions to yesterday’s straw poll.
You already …
……

Straw Poll Round-Up at Conservative Times--Republican GOP news source. · August 12, 2007 at 9:35 AM

[…] Eye on ‘08 points out that Mitt used 50 more buses than Bush, but got 4,000 less votes. […]

Ft. Hard Knox » links for 2007-08-12 · August 12, 2007 at 10:20 AM

[…] eyeon08.com ” Romney wins; conservatives split We are moving in to a weird situation with the conservative votes getting split many different ways. At the same time, Cox, Hunter, Thompson, etc. all need to get out. Ron Paul doesn’t really get a bump. (tags: Romney Huckabee MittRomney IowaStrawGOP2007 2008 elections) […]

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