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Sen. Rand Paul takes first in CPAC presidential straw poll

OXON HILL, Md. — Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul has won the Conservative Political Action Conference’s annual presidential preference straw poll.

Pollsters announced Saturday afternoon that Paul won 26 percent of the votes in the annual survey, giving Paul his third consecutive win in as many years.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker came in second, with 21 percent.

The three-day CPAC conference in suburban Washington draws many libertarian-leaning college students whose views and priorities differ significantly from the Republican party at large.

But it is nonetheless seen as a barometer of certain conservative activists’ early leanings.

Pollsters say just over 3,000 attendees voted. Nearly half were aged 25 or under.

Respondents said economic issues, like jobs and taxes, were most important to them in deciding whom to support as the Republican nominee for president in 2016.

The results are nonbinding and reflect only the views of the registrants who chose to vote during the conference.

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