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Ames Straw Poll

September 7, 2011 | By James Oliphant
While all eyes are expected to be on Rick Perry on Wednesday evening as he makes his debating debut on the national stage, it might be Michele Bachmann who has the most to prove. For weeks, Bachmann and her camp have watched as Perry has swallowed up media coverage and vaulted to the front of the presidential pack. And he has done so by stealing much of Bachmann's thunder. It was less than a month ago that Bachmann prevailed in the Ames Straw Poll, and then appeared an all of the Sunday morning talk shows the following day in a victory lap. Her political star appeared to be in its ascension.
September 7, 2011 | By Michael A. Memoli
Michele Bachmann made her big splash at a New Hampshire debate in June. When the candidates gathered again to spar in Iowa last month, she had sufficiently risen to top-tier status that she drew repeated fire from Tim Pawlenty. So it was remarkable to see the Minnesota congresswoman relegated to an afterthought Wednesday, getting barely as much face time as Herman Cain, Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich. It can all be traced to the entrance of Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who emerged as an official candidate just as Bachmann was crowned the winner of the Ames Straw Poll.
August 19, 2011 | By James Oliphant
For Michele Bachmann, the hits keep coming. While on the campaign trail earlier this week, she mixed up Elvis Presley's birthday with the day he died. Now, she has apparently brought an Elvis-era menace back from the dead, citing in an interview the growing might of - the Soviet Union. According to the liberal website Think Progress, Bachmann, whose grasp of history on the trail at times has been somewhat shaky, said during a radio interview Thursday that Americans today are mindful of the threat posed by a rising U.S.S.R., which, like Elvis, left the building a long, long time ago. ( Listen below.
August 16, 2011 | By Melanie Mason
Fomer Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is now off the presidential campaign trail, following a lackluster showing in last weekend's Ames straw poll. But if he wants to hit the road again, he can fall back on the fruitful paid speaking circuit. Pawlenty made more than $250,000 from speaking engagements this year, according to his personal financial disclosure report released today by the Federal Election Commission. He also made $342,000 in royalty payments for his book, "Courage to Stand," which was published last January.
August 14, 2011 | By Maeve Reston and Robin Abcarian
After finishing a distant third place in the crucial Ames Straw Poll, Tim Pawlenty withdrew from the presidential race Sunday, telling supporters and friends that after much prayer with his wife, he did not see a way forward. Pawlenty, who announced his decision to donors and supporters on a conference call Sunday morning, had centered his campaign on his neighboring state of Iowa, hoping that his credentials as a social and fiscal conservative would give him broad appeal to first-in-the-nation caucus-goers.
August 14, 2011 | By Michael A. Memoli
President Obama's summer woes have dragged his approval rating to an all-time low, sinking below 40% for the first time in Gallup's daily tracking poll. New data posted Sunday shows that 39% of Americans approve of Obama's job performance, while 54% disapprove. Both are the worst numbers of his presidency. Obama's approval rating has hovered in the 40% range for much of 2011, peaking at 53% in the weeks following the death of Osama bin Laden. But Americans' view of his job performance continued to tick downward as the debt-ceiling debate heated up. By the time he signed legislation averting a federal default, he was mired in the low-40% range.
August 13, 2011 | By James Oliphant
Thousands of Iowans streamed onto the campus of Iowa State University to vote in the traditional Straw Poll, a contest that could, for the first time, shine some light on the 2012 Republican presidential field. They came by bus, by car, from all over the state, escorted by volunteers for the competing candidates. Orange-clad Michele Bachmann volunteers were legion, as were green-clad Tim Pawlenty supporters. Bachmann and Pawlenty are expected to compete with Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas)
August 13, 2011 | By Paul West, Seema Mehta and Maeve Reston, Los Angeles Times
On a day that Michele Bachmann scored an early victory in Iowa, Rick Perry scrambled the Republican presidential race by jumping in with a "tea-party"-themed attack on Washington and what he termed President Obama's "rudderless leadership. " Perry's announcement Saturday stepped on Bachmann's triumph in the Ames straw poll, the biggest moment yet in her presidential campaign and a further sign of her appeal in this early-voting state. "It's your victory! You did it!" Bachmann told supporters crowded outside her bus on the Iowa State University campus, the scene of the daylong GOP event.
August 13, 2011 | By James Oliphant and Tom Hamburger
Six contenders for the Republican presidential nomination made their pitches to die-hard conservative voters Saturday, and while the messages may have been different, they shared a common theme. “Get the government off our backs!” Tim Pawlenty told a packed arena on the campus of Iowa State University. Pawlenty was fighting to keep his campaign afloat - and needed a strong showing in the traditional Ames straw poll. As he and the other candidates spoke, thousands of voters lined up to vote, with the results expected late Saturday afternoon.
August 13, 2011
Some quick thoughts on the numbers. . . Michele Bachmann's campaign had been hoping for 6,000-plus votes, so the thin margin over Ron Paul was a bit of a surprise. Tim Pawlenty's campaign talked about finishing near the front of the pack, and he did, but they can't be happy with how far he trailed both Bachmann and Paul. Rick Santorum's finish can be viewed as a sort of a moral victory; he's campaigned hard in Iowa. And as a write-in Rick Perry beat Mitt Romney, who was on the ballot, which can't have pleased Romney's supporters.
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