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Did Bachmann chair's marijuana conviction prompt Ron Paul switch?

Anissa Ford's picture

Kent Sorenson, Michele Bachmann's former Iowa chair, told Time he switched to Ron Paul's camp because Ron Paul is in the lead. But it could be his legal history that prompted the switch.

In 2010, the Des Moines Iowa Register took a deep look into the histories of candidates in Iowa's 37th District race. Kent Sorenson's history returned with a drug conviction and failure to pay back child support.

Sorenson and his wife Shawnee have six children and Sorenson's websites paints the picture of a family values man. But in 1992, when their oldest child was 17 months, his wife petitioned the court to garnish Sorenson's wages. $50 a month was taken from Sorenson's pay to cover more than $2000 he reportedly owed in child support.

In addition to the back child support charge, Sorenson was 20-years-old when he was convicted on a marijuana charge. Sorenson was caught in an undercover sting operation where he purchased and delivered an eighth of an ounce of marijuana for $30 with intent to deliver. Sorenson was given a 6 month suspended sentence. In total he was ordered to spend three to five days in jail for the misdemeanor and pay a $300 fine. Sorenson pled guilty in the case against him, but told the Des Moines Register that he "was not a drug dealer." He said the "person he was with" dealt drugs.

Those are all viable reasons for Sorenson to support a candidate like Ron Paul over Michele Bachmann. For many Republicans Ron Paul is a redemption candidate who will save them from strict government regulations that many feel are hindrances to successful capitalist ventures.

Sorenson, who owned a cleaning company before his successful Congressional run, told TIME magazine that because Ron Paul has taken a commanding lead in the Iowa polls, it is important to stand behind Ron Paul now in the effort to block a Romney nomination. Sorenson also told TIME that had Paul entered the nomination race earlier, Sorenson likely would have supported Paul.

Sorenson's interview with TIME is brief, but his brief words paint Romney as the absolute opposition. Sorenson said he wants to make sure that Iowa does not elect "someone like Romney" in next week's election.

Sorenson says that he is not the same person that he was back in the 90s when he and his wife were separated and when he was involved with marijuana circles.

Back in August of this year, when Michelle Bachmann was on top of the heap (before Rick Perry entered the race'), Sorenson was all about Bachmann. He followed her during GOP debates and kept his Tweets going straight through to Herman Cain's departure. Sorenson's commentary was hardest on Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich and drop out Tim Pawlenty.

But he never mentioned Ron Paul directly except for a retweet that gave Paul and "F" for his debate performance on November 22.

When the Iowa Congressional session started, Sorenson tweeted a lot less. He left a message on his official page that he'd be taking a break from the blogs while in session.

His announcement that he switched to the Paul campaign shocked the Bachmann camp who accused him of taking money from the Paul campaign for he endorsement.

Sorenson denies the charge. But nothing in Sorenson's past indicates that he had a strong distaste for Romney or even a passing interest in Ron Paul.

If Sorenson is an astute judge of the GOPs 2012 hopes, then perhaps his support for Paul is the beginning of a trend of the changing face of the GOP and the effect the Tea Party has had rearranging the conservative ticket.

And although Michele Bachmann claims her campaign is gaining momentum, the fact is she's in 5th or 6th place. She's losing to Rick Santorum's brand new flow and despite Newt Gingrich's fall from the sun, Bachmann trails Gingrich.

It is expected that when (and if) Michele Bachmann drops out of the 2012 race that she too will endorse Ron Paul. She's already been captured supporting and praising Paul as well as agreeing with his policies. On Facebook, she's linked as one of the many celebrities who support or endorse Ron Paul. Check out the video of Bachmann's high praises for Paul early this summer.

If Bachmann were to drop out today and endorse Ron Paul, she would virtually seal Paul's lead and leverage over Mitt Romney. Right now, the GOP race has Romney and Paul vying for leads in the race to the GOP candidacy.

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