FRANKFORT, Ky. -
Despite that popularity, Ron Paul was expected to take a shellacking from presumed GOP nominee Mitt Romney on Tuesday. The elder Paul hasn't campaigned in Kentucky, and his son hasn't publicly urged Kentucky voters to get behind his father.
"I think Ron Paul did Rand a huge favor by not embarrassing him," said Republican strategist Mike Karem of Louisville. "Ron Paul's chances were nil to none, and none done left town. He had no chance in Kentucky. He would have gotten slaughtered."
Ron Paul still will be on Kentucky's ballot, but he effectively ended his presidential campaign a week ago when he announced he'd no longer be spending money on the race. Republicans Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum also will be on the ballot. Neither withdrew in time to have their names removed.
President Barack Obama, the only Democrat on Kentucky's presidential ballot, faces what could be a prickly position himself because voters will have the option of choosing "uncommitted" on their ballots. Two weeks ago in neighboring West Virginia, a prison inmate received 41 percent of the vote against Obama. The question looms as to whether Obama, who remains largely unpopular in Kentucky, could face another such embarrassment here.
"I just don't see that happening," said University of Louisville political scientist Dewey Clayton. "The turnout is going to be very low, and so I think those who go vote are more than likely going to vote for Obama, because he does have support from die-hard Democrats in this state."
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