Ron Paul 2012: Key Iowa Bachmann Supporter Switches to Paul Days Before Vote

   on December 29 2011 8:03 AM
Ron Paul
Ron Paul was accused by Rick Santorum in Saturday night's GOP debate of being "caught not telling the truth." Reuters

The momentum for Ron Paul 2012 continues. In Iowa, the state chairman for presidential candidate Michele Bachmann, who previously won the Iowa straw poll, has decided to endorse Ron Paul.

Iowa state senator Kent Sorenson made the surprising, about-face move less than a week before Iowa's important caucuses, the nation's first that will set the tone for the homestretch of the Republican presidential nomination race.

Sorenson had championed Bachmann, and had attended an event for her as recent as Wednesday afternoon. Hours later, according to the Des Moines Register, Sorenson appeared at a Ron Paul rally announcing his endorsement. Sorenson was first elected to Iowa's state senate in 2010, in part due to support from Paul. Announcing his Paul endorsement at the rally Wednesday before a crowd estimated at 500, the news was greeted with robust applause.

I believe we're at a turning point in this campaign, Sorenson said in his announcement at the Paul rally, accordign to the Register. ... I thought it was my duty to come to his aid, just like he came to my aid during my Senate race, which was a very nasty race.

According to the Iowa newspaper, Sorenson had been contemplating switching his support from Bachmann to Paul for days. He said it didn't happen until he was heading to the event Wednesday evening. He called a Paul staffer on the way to the 7 p.m. event, the report said.

Do you guys want me on board? Sorenson said.

In explaining the move, he talked about Paul's attributes rather than addressing issues with Bachmann.

The fact of the matter is that I believe we have a clear, top-tier race between Romney and Ron Paul, Sorsenson said. We have a choice where we can elect more of the same ... or we can elect someone who's going to transform this country to get it back to what our founding fathers wanted, and I believe that's Ron Paul.

Bachmann called a press conference upon the news, saying that Kent Sorenson personally told her he was offered a large sum of money to work for the Paul campaign.

Kent campaigned with us earlier this afternoon and went immediately afterward to a Ron Paul event and announced he is changing teams, Bachmann continued. Kent said to me yesterday that 'Everyone sells out in Iowa, why shouldn't I?' then he told me he would stay with our campaign.

Despite a win earlier this year in the Iowa straw poll, Bachmann has been stuck in single digits in polls. Paul, however, has been surging as of late and some polls have him in the lead in the final days before the Iowa vote.

Join the Discussion