Gary Johnson Tests Role Of Ames Straw PollAugust 15, 2011Posted in Blog, Event, Gov. Gary Johnson, Small Government, Twitter
By Meghan Malloy from The Washington Independent
Several 2012 GOP candidates have released official statements following Sunday’s announcement by former Gov. Tim Pawlenty that his campaign would be ending following its third place finish at the Ames Straw Poll — including Gary Johnson, who questioned the role of the GOP poll.
Former New Mexico Gov. Johnson, who did not actively participate in the poll (he went mountain-biking instead), said the decision was Pawlenty’s to make and that he respects the decision. He also applauded the effort of Pawlenty’s staff and supporters, but had few nice things to say about Saturday’s straw poll.
“As Republicans survey a new list of candidates today, including the departure of a candidate who is credible, experienced and who has a real record to run on, it is appropriate to question the inflated role of an event like the Ames Straw Poll in the process. That a pay-to-play gathering in Iowa six months before the first real ballots are cast can be such a qualifying — or disqualifying — event is something the media and tens of millions of Republican voters need to think about. A lot of voices have not been heard yet, and it is far too early for the ‘system’ to be picking winners and losers,” Johnson said.
“If there is a message from Ames, it is that this race is wide open and that the vast majority of Republicans and Independents are still looking for the candidate who can win the White House in 2012.”
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