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GOP hopeful Mitt Romney’s sup­porters rallied in Michigan on Tuesday, barely giving him the victory over former Penn­syl­vania Sen. Rick San­torum.

Rep. Ron Paul and former Speaker of the House Newt Gin­grich trailed in third and fourth.

Not so at Hillsdale College.

Over 50 percent of the 184 stu­dents polled at Hillsdale College said they sup­ported Ron Paul, while he received less than 12 percent of the vote in Michigan’s primary.

Sophomore Spencer Amaral said he believes that so many stu­dents support Paul because he under­stands and expresses the prin­ciples taught at Hillsdale.

“We should under­stand why he’s the best can­didate and the best statesman,” Amaral said.

“He is the only one we should support now that we know what we know.”

Romney sup­porter sophomore Michael Koziara, however, believes saying Hillsdale stu­dents should support a par­ticular can­didate is “pre­sump­tuous” and that all of the Repub­lican can­di­dates are pro­po­nents of a limited, Con­sti­tu­tional gov­ernment.

“Keep in mind,” Koziara said, “that Hillsdale’s own Dr. Wolfram has voiced support for Gov. Romney because of Mitt’s strong under­standing of free-market eco­nomics and business.”

Some stu­dents are con­cerned that Paul sup­porters will hamper the Repub­lican party. Koziara worries that, if Paul loses the primary, some staunch Paul sup­porters will detract from the support of the GOP pres­i­dential can­didate in the fall.

“I’m fearful of a repeat of history,” Koziara said. “The general election in 2000 was so close that — had liberal votes for third parties like the Green Party gone to Gore as they oth­erwise would [have] — Gore would have won Florida and the pres­i­dency.”

Second to Paul, San­torum received about one-fourth of the support from stu­dents. Sopho- mores Melika Willoughby and Brianna Walden actively support San­torum because of what they con­sider his proven lead­ership with social issues and strong under­standing of eco­nomics.

“I was a San­torum fan back before it was cool,” Walden said with a laugh.

“San­torum is the only can­didate that artic­u­lates prin­cipled beliefs without simply slamming Obama or toeing the party line. He made me sit up and listen,” Willoughby said. “San­torum is able to artic­ulate the political phi­losophy and reasons why behind the policies he pur­ports.”

Walden chalked up Michigan as a victory for San­torum — though Romney tech­ni­cally won — since he received so much of the vote despite Romney’s close ties here.

“It would have been nice if  he had won,” Walden said. “But San­torum was out­spent six to one. It’s amazing he did so well in a state [Romney] grew up in.”

Junior Katy Bachelder dis­agreed because she believes Romney won the media.

“The headline is that Mitt won. The del­egate tech­ni­cality is not as important because San­torum lost the news cycle,” Bachelder said.

In stark con­trast to Romney’s 41 percent of Michigan voters, only nine of the 184 stu­dents expressed support for the former gov­ernor of Mass­a­chu­setts. But student sup­porters Koziara and Bachelder believe that Romney could beat Obama in the general election.

“There is no other can­didate with as much business expe­rience,” Koziara said. “I think he has the ability to turn the economy around with a win in November.”

Bachelder said that Romney’s increasing con­ser­vatism is pos­itive in response to the accu­sation that Romney “flip-flops.”

“When someone comes closer to what I believe, I con­sider it a victory, not some­thing worth assailing,” she said. “That Mitt moved to the right is an asset, not a lia­bility.”

Walden, though, remains uncon­vinced that Romney truly upholds con­ser­v­ative values.

“If we want to elect a can­didate to beat Obama, why would we nom­inate someone like Obama? We should go with someone who has a com­plete con­trast to Obama,” Walden said.

Romney sup­porters expressed concern with Santorum’s attempts to attract Democrats.

“I was con­cerned with San­torum and his last-minute tactics,” Koziara said. “San­torum is trying to run as the ‘true’ con­ser­v­ative, and his move to attract liberal votes may bite him in the long run.”

Bachelder said that Repub­licans should take the Democrats voting for San­torum as warning signs.

“The Democrats that are voting for San­torum demon­strate that they are scared of Romney. The Democrats are trying to get the Repub­lican party to play into the hands of chaos,” Bachelder said. “San­torum sup­porters shouldn’t be thrilled about it.”

Walden con­siders both can­di­dates viable oppo­nents to Obama, though.

Hillsdale stu­dents remained con­sistent with Michigan trends towards Newt Gin­grich. Only four of those polled expressed support for Gin­grich.

Unlike the more political stu­dents on campus, 31 stu­dents responded as either non-political or unde­cided. A few wrote in names, from Gary Johnson to John F. Kennedy to Louis the XIV.

“I’m sup­porting Eliz­abeth II,” junior Richard Norris said.

  • David Heath

    “I’m fearful of a repeat of history,” Koziara said. “The general election in 2000 was so close that — had liberal votes for third parties like the Green Party gone to Gore as they oth­erwise would [have] — Gore would have won Florida and the pres­i­dency.”

    That is right, Koziara, you are fearful along with many others and that is why our republic is becoming a tyranical state. As long as you remain fearful and vote for the lesser of two evils like a good little lemming, the estab­lishment will be able to con­tinue scamming us out of our liberty and they will be able to keep picking our pres­i­dents. For the love of God(and liberty), wake up before its too late! I am so sick of watching my coun­trymen give into this.

  • Time2Leave

    Well said David!

    • I would like to see Mitt remind Newt and Rick in uimocpng debates that they also once sup­ported the indi­vidual mandate. Rick really pushed Mitt on it in the last debate, while com­pletely ignoring Mitt’s promise that he would, as pres­ident, repeal Oba­maCare. Rick used the term top-down gov­ernment man­dated system, several times, but that’s exactly what he sup­ported in 1994. If it’s man­dated, it’s gov­ernment. Newt has announced that he’s in the race all the way to the GOP primary. I have to wonder: if he loses, will he throw his support behind Romney, or will he pout and just sit this one out?

  • A.J.

    “San­torum is the only can­didate that artic­u­lates prin­cipled beliefs without simply slamming Obama or toeing the party line.”

    Nope. You meant to say “Ron Paul”.

  • Crazy — To do the same thing over and over and expect to get a dif­ferant result.
    Why is it that people keep voting for the Repub­lican party favorets and say Ron paul is crazy? Has voting for the gov­ernment favorets been doing well for us through out history? Why try and fix a problem by doing more of what cause the problem in the first place?
    Ron Paul 2012 or nothing else!!!

  • Liberty100

    Could either Ron Paul or Gary Johnson become the Franken­stein Can­didate (a can­didate who speaks truth to power; one who would rather be forth­right than Pres­ident) for 2012?

    • I think he’ll pout and sit it out. He has to be one of the most arrogant and eupdifrl politi­cians out there. He’s calling himself the Raegan Heir these days! Gin­grich has yet to handle a loss with class. When Romney lost S.C., there was no whining; only a new deter­mi­nation to work harder. When Newt loses, we hear whining and excuses ad nauseum. The audience was too quiet, the audience was too loud, Romney is lying, yadaya­dayada I don’t think he will support Romney. I just hope he doesn’t take too many poor innocent folks down with him.

  • Jeff King

    Too bad these stu­dents don’t vote. Seri­ously. Paul easily could have won Hillsdale county.

    • ThatLib­er­tyGuy

      You are, of course assuming that their votes are accu­rately counted. There is much work yet to be done in this R3volution. I hope that I am wrong, but in a grass­roots intel­lectual r3volution, often the last thing to change are the insti­tu­tions. That is no reason to setback the needed awak­ening by vio­lating your con­science and silencing your true voice in the voting booth.

  • Hmmm…I heard of that last week. It seems plau­sible bascuee the reality is that only Dr. Ron Paul and Gov­ernor Mitt Romney have actual del­egate counts. What the news sites show in the way of del­egate counts is utterly false. The real del­egate counts show that the Romney camp have a concern that Dr. Paul might be a thorn in their side…and so, they might be trying to broker with him before it gets nasty at the con­vention. The truth of the matter is that the Romney camp rigged this year’s system with the GOP offi­cials so that he would have an easier sweep of the del­e­gates – even if he lost states. Well, Dr. Ron Paul got news of this and is now beating Gov­ernor Romney at his game and alerted his sup­porters across the country to pay attention and to not leave the voting areas after the announcement of the caucus or primary winners bascuee that’s when they pick del­e­gates. If you don’t have people who sign up to be del­e­gates then, it’s game over – even if you won the state primary. It’s slightly com­pli­cated, but Rachel Maddow inter­viewed Doug Wead about all of this non­sense in the wake of the phony Maine results. Sorry I cannot include it here, but if you do a youtube search or go to ronpaulflix.com, you’ll find all of it cat­a­loged there. In Christo Rege,Philleoxiii@me.com

  • ThatLib­er­tyGuy

    Just a shout-out to my liberty-lovin’ brothers and sisters at Hillsdale. I am thrilled that your gen­er­ation is embracing what mine has let slip away. The gospel of liberty is truly a lost per­spective in public America. It’s revival is a most welcome devel­opment.

    May I humbly offer my per­spective on this election. I have watched these political parties manip­ulate us for 40+ years now. They love to box us in with the choice of two hor­ribly flawed can­di­dates and then con­vince us it is ‘urgent’ that we defeat the opponent. Well, I am done post­poning the ‘vital’ in order to service the ‘urgent’.

    I want a man or woman in the oval office who takes the oath of office with the utmost seri­ousness. One who under­stands and is com­mitted to the Con­sti­tution. One who knows that the federal gov­ernment and the exec­utive branch in par­ticular are STRICTLY LIMITED in their actions both foreign and domestic. THIS IS VITAL!

    I hope the time is now; I hope the man is Ron Paul. Whether now or later, the Con­sti­tu­tional message of liberty and inherent rights of all indi­viduals is out of the bottle once again in America. Dr. Paul has said that ‘elec­tions are short-term efforts; r3volutions are long-term projects.’ How many liberty-lovers across America sold-out to the ‘urgent’ in 2008 to waste their vote on a political party. My young friends, don’t sell out now, ’cause it just keeps getting easier after the first time.