Frist wins GOP presidential straw poll in Memphis - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Frist wins GOP presidential straw poll in Memphis

The news was met with a wide round of applause. "And the winner for the straw poll: Tennessee Senator Bill Frist." Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee's band took the stage as attendees took in the announcement.

"I know that a lot of people love Senator Frist," said Tipton County delegate Tara Gricco," Tennessee is proud of him. We're proud that he's the leader."

Bill Giannini, the chairman of the Memphis/Shelby County Republican party admitted location was a factor in the results. "Of course that probably had something to do with it," said Giannini Saturday, "but Senator Frist has provided very solid leadership and I think that showed tonight."

Jesse Jane Duff of Americans for Dr. Rice is upset the US Secretary of State's name was not on the ballot.  

<"Of course that probably had something to do with it, but Senator Frist has provided very solid leadership and I think that showed tonight.">

But Jesse Jane Duff of Americans for Dr. Rice is upset Condaleeza Rice did not appear on the ballot. "There's a possibility that the Tennessee chairs encouraged her name not to be on it," claims Duff, "because she's the greatest fear of all the Republicans candidates."

Still, Republican leaders say Frist's win isn't the last straw. Mid-term elections are coming up this year. Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney finished second, with Virginia Senator George Allen tied for third with President Bush, who can not run again. Arizona Senator John McCain, who'd asked for delegates to vote for President Bush in a show of support, finished a distant fifth.

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