These four states alone account for 64 electoral votes and if you were to take 64 away from Obama and give them to any GOP candidate that is the difference right there. Of course, it is not safe to assume that everyone who voted for Paul in the primary would have turned out and voted GOP if another candidate was on the ballot. Nor it is safe to assume that Ron Paul would have won a general election against President Obama or that the Libertarian ideology would sell to the majority of Americans.
Several "Ron Paul Republicans" won close House races, however, including Thomas Massie in Kentucky, and Justin Amash and Kerry Bentivolio in Michigan. Yet Republican "Tea Party" candidates lost across the board -- again. That is an indication that Ron Paul may have fared better against President Obama in the general election than Mitt Romney did.
But that is not the point. The point is that neither party should suppress voters, intimidate delegates and force Americans to vote for establishment candidates picked by party bosses, billionaires and the corporate media. That strategy usually leads to the incumbent party winning, like in 2004, but also leads to lack of new ideas and the potential for real change. The American people should be allowed to make their own choices. Rigged elections are one of the 14 defining characteristics of fascism.
It is safe to assume that many Ron Paul supporters would have turned out and voted had they not been suppressed and alienated by their own party leaders. While all exit polling, post-election assumptions and even the statistics are an inexact science, one thing is clear. The GOP not only turned off large amounts of women and minority voters, but a lot of young people within their own party. Hopefully all parties involved, not only political parties, learned something from what the GOP did to Ron Paul and his supporters.
Here is what one Ron Paul supporter was quoted saying on a Libertarian blog: "I want to make sure that when the Republican Party loses, terribly"I want [them to know] it's because they systematically shut out the most intelligent, most youthful and active voting bloc in American history."
And here is what Joanne Ransing wrote on my blog:
Perhaps GOP leaders should take a closer look at disenfranchising their own voters instead of blaming Mother Nature, the changing demographics in America or candidates that are not conservative enough. Very few Americans seem to care for disenfranchisement, voter suppression and intimidation.
Republicans now have fours years to think about that while they argue among themselves and while President Obama continues to try to fix the mess that their last "winner" left for America.