Saturday, November 17, 2007

Is Ron Paul really such an underdog?

I admit it, I'm a Ron Paul supporter.

And while it's hard to do anything on the Internet recently without seeing mentions of Ron Paul, when I'm sitting around watching television or reading a magazine, sometimes I feel like I'm alone in that support. Journalists on every news program use terms like "underdog", "dark horse", and "third tier" when mentioning Ron Paul, and almost invariably preface any discussion of Paul with a reference to his low percentages in polls.

But today I stumbled across an article entitled "Ron Paul is Not Being Included in Polls". Normally, I approach such articles with a healthy bit of skepticism (assuming I bother reading them at all), which is why I was a bit surprised when I realized that the author provided proof to back up his claims! The article provides links to quite a few recent polls performed by the major news networks, and from what I can tell, the author is justified in his claim. Since the numbers cited on the major news programs are often aggregations of such polls, a guy has to wonder exactly how accurate those statistics really are...

I'm certainly not suggesting that there's some sort of vast conspiracy against Ron Paul, but I do think that the news media might be approaching this Presidential race with a certain bias for the "obvious" candidates. Paul was pegged early on as an "also-ran", and the questions asked on poll questionnaires seem to reflect that bias.

It's no wonder that Ron Paul is showing so poorly on these polls. The surprising thing is that, given the questions asked, that he shows up on the polls at all.

I'm looking forward to December 16th, the day on which Ron Paul supporters have organized another "money bomb" fund raising event. If Paul has a repeat of the record-breaking $4.3 million raised on (remember, remember) the 5th of November, it will be considerably more difficult for the media and political pundits to marginalize his campaign. It would be hard to call a candidate that raises over $12 million from individual donations in a single quarter a "dark horse".

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