"The Presidency 5 Straw Poll finished a great week for the Republican Party of Florida. Congratulations to Herman Cain for his victory. Today's results reinforce the crucial role Florida's primary will play in the selection of our nominee and show that no candidate can take Florida for granted. Clearly, communicating a strong conservative message directly to Florida and its grassroots voters made a difference today. I believe that as we saw in 2010, a challenging primary between our Republican candidates will serve our party, state and nation well in preparing to defeat President Obama in 2012."
Obviously, the results of the straw poll are significant in that it will be portrayed as a major loss to Rick Perry, who unlike Mitt Romney, seriously competed to win the event.
The Perry camp was spinning furiously to put a happy face on the unhappy result, with a campaign spokesman instead dumping on Mitt Romney for finishing third.
“Whether it’s his flip-flops, whether it’s his liberal views — whatever the ultimate reason, the people of Florida rejected Mitt Romney once again,” Politico report spokesman Mark Miner said.
Herman Cain released a statement after his big win:
"Thank you to the Republican voters for this incredible honor of being named the winner of the Presidency 5 straw poll in Florida today," Cain said. "This is a sign of our growing momentum and my candidacy that cannot be ignored. I will continue to share my message of 'common sense solutions' across this country and look forward to spending more time in Florida, a critical state for both the nomination and the general election"
An interesting and amusing storyline coming up from some Republicans in Florida uphappy about Cain's win was that the Tea Party "hijacked" P5, as if that if just now they are realizing what's been going on their party over the past year?
When CL mentioned to GOP political consultant Chris Ingram on WMNF radio recently that the Tea Party had effectively taken over the RPOF, he disagreed. Chris, any thoughts now? (Ingram makes his thoughts known in his Irreverent View blog).
Here's the official tally of P-5
1. Herman Cain, 37.1%
2. Rick Perry, 15.4%
3. Mitt Romney, 14.0%
4. Rick Santorum, 10.9%
5. Ron Paul, 10.4%
6. Newt Gingrich, 8.4%
7. Jon Huntsman, 2.3%
8. Michele Bachmann, 1.5%