Go to HHH home page.
Smart Politics
 


Ron Paul: Don't Pin Me Down!

Bookmark and Share

The Texas Congressman is the only major 2012 Republican presidential candidate to take the debate stage without once wearing a lapel pin

ronpaul11.jpgWhile many prominent politicians (and broadcasters) don't think twice about wrapping themselves around the symbols of patriotism ever since the attacks on 9/11 more than a decade ago, there is one 2012 Republican presidential candidate who has opted not to wear his patriotism...on his suit lapel.

A Smart Politics analysis of the 2012 Republican primary election campaign finds that Ron Paul is the only major GOP White House hopeful who has yet to wear a lapel pin during a debate.

Congressman Paul has participated in 18 debates thus far and has never worn a lapel pin once - in stark contrast to the rest of the GOP field, which has donned a pin more than 75 percent of the time (81 of 107 debate participants to date).

While Paul - the only remaining GOP candidate left in the race who served in the military - chooses not to adorn American symbols on his attire, every other major candidate who has participated in the debates has done so at least half of the time.

Herman Cain wore a lapel pin 100 percent of the time he took the debate stage, followed by Rick Perry at 92 percent, Rick Santorum at 90 percent, Michele Bachmann at 83 percent, Mitt Romney at 78 percent, Tim Pawlenty at 67 percent, Jon Huntsman at 55 percent, and Newt Gingrich at 50 percent.

After sporting a naked lapel during his first three debates through the gathering at the Reagan Library in California, Mitt Romney has worn a flag pin in every debate since - with one exception.

The former Massachusetts governor neglected to wear a pin during the fourth South Carolina debate in Charleston.

Two days later, Newt Gingrich crushed Romney in the Palmetto State's primary and Romney made sure to wear his flag pin during the next two debates in Florida.

Coincidence?

Overall, Romney has worn a pin of the U.S. flag in 14 of 18 debates.

Rick Santorum has likewise generally been steadfast in wearing a label pin - failing to do so in only the first debate in Iowa and the fourth debate in Florida, sporting traditional flag pins in 14 of the 17 occasions in which he has decorated his left lapel.

Newt Gingrich, meanwhile, did not wear a pin throughout the first nine debates in which he participated from the first New Hampshire debate through the second South Carolina debate).

However, in the subsequent nine debates from D.C. onwards, the former House Speaker has worn a blue flag pin on his suits without fail.

Frequent pin-wearing candidates from those who have exited the GOP race were Rick Perry (in 12 of 13 debates), Michele Bachmann (in 10 of 12), and Herman Cain (in 11 of 11). Bachmann and Cain usually wore traditional U.S. flag pins, while Perry exclusively wore a "Silver Antelope" pin - an award given for outstanding longtime service to the Boy Scouts of America.

Jon Huntsman wore pins in six of his 11 debates with Tim Pawlenty doing so in two of the three debates in which he participated.

Note: Minor (and former) Republican presidential candidate Gary Johnson - who is now seeking the Libertarian nomination - did not wear a lapel pin in either of his two debate appearances in South Carolina (last May) and Florida (last September).

Republican Presidential Candidates Wearing Lapel Pins in the Debates

Candidate
Wore pin
No pin
Percent
Herman Cain
11
0
100.0
Rick Perry
12
1
92.3
Rick Santorum
17
2
89.5
Michele Bachmann
10
2
83.3
Mitt Romney
14
4
77.8
Tim Pawlenty
2
1
66.7
Jon Huntsman
6
5
54.5
Newt Gingrich
9
9
50.0
Ron Paul
0
18
0.0
Gary Johnson*
0
2
0.0
* Currently seeking Libertarian Party nomination. Data compiled by Smart Politics.

Follow Smart Politics on Twitter.

Previous post: Candidate Code Names: Fun with Anagrams and the 2012 Republican Field
Next post: Media Overload on Mitt Romney's "Poor" Comment Comes Nearly Four Months Late

Leave a comment


Remains of the Data

Plurality-Winning Governors Elected At Century-Long High Water Mark

The rate of gubernatorial candidates elected without the support of a majority of voters is at its highest level since the 1910s.

Political Crumbs

Seeing Red

Congressman Nick Rahall's failed bid for a 20th term in West Virginia this cycle, combined with a narrow loss by Nick Casey to Alex Mooney in Shelley Moore Capito's open seat, means that West Virginia Democrats will be shut out of the state's U.S. House delegation for the first time in over 90 years. The Republican sweep by two-term incumbent David McKinley in the 1st CD, Mooney in the 2nd, and Evan Jenkins over Rahall in the 3rd marks the first time the GOP has held all seats in the chamber from West Virginia since the Election of 1920. During the 67th Congress (1921-1923) all six seats from the state were controlled by the GOP. Since the Election of 1922, Democrats have won 76 percent of all U.S. House elections in the Mountain State - capturing 172 seats compared to 54 for the GOP.


Home Field Advantage?

When the 114th Congress convenes in a few days, Maine will be represented by one home-grown U.S. Representative: Waterville-born Republican Bruce Poliquin. With the departure of Millinocket-born Mike Michaud, who launched a failed gubernatorial bid, the Pine Tree State was poised to send a House delegation to D.C. without any Maine-born members for the first time since 1821. Three-term U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree (born in Minnesota) coasted to reelection as expected, however Poliquin edged Kentucky-born Emily Cain by 5.3 points to keep the streak alive. Since 1876, a total of 208 of the 222 candidates elected to the nation's lower legislative chamber from the state have been born in Maine, or 94 percent.


more POLITICAL CRUMBS

Humphrey School Sites
CSPG
Humphrey New Media Hub

Issues />

<div id=
Abortion
Afghanistan
Budget and taxes
Campaign finances
Crime and punishment
Economy and jobs
Education
Energy
Environment
Foreign affairs
Gender
Health
Housing
Ideology
Immigration
Iraq
Media
Military
Partisanship
Race and ethnicity
Reapportionment
Redistricting
Religion
Sexuality
Sports
Terrorism
Third parties
Transportation
Voting