why ron paul?

This is just one of several flash-based ads I’ve been working up….

Send a Message

I’ve veered from my planned offering this afternoon to accommodate a little analysis of the breaking news that Romney is suspending his campaign for the republican nomination.


With McCain over halfway to the total delegates needed to lock up the nomination, it’s hard to blame Mitt for pulling the plug on his self-financed campaign. His ‘true conservative’ mantra has failed to rally the troops, and he wants to preserve his chances to make a run in 2012 after the Democrats have had a whack at complete control of the legislative & executive branches of Government. The idea of dumping another $40 million down a hole might have been a concern as well.

McCain’s support in the GOP is extremely shallow among primary voters, and I suspect that he’ll only pick up a small portion of the Romney supporters. In spite of his daunting lead, I remain convinced that McCain could be knocked out by the right dove-tailing of events.

Johnny Rotten

In spite of the gracious welcome he got at the C-PAC speech this afternoon, Conservatives will not sign on to support McCain en masse. Some will support third party candidates, some will vote Democratic, and most will stay home. That is, unless something (or someone) comes along to offer conservatives an alternative to not voting or pulling the Hillary lever.

If you buckle and vote for McCain while holding your nose, there is clear message sent – that the party elite can call anything breathing ‘conservative’ and the great unwashed will fall in line to support the person.

You might be running the calculus in your mind at this very moment. A vote for McCain, you reason, would be a betrayal of your deep held conservative principles. But if you don’t vote for him, we might get Hillary or Obama. What’s a conservative to do?

I’d like to suggest a protest vote. How about a protest vote for the most anti-establishment Republican candidate in any of our lifetimes?

Take that, establishment

At this point, there is little chance that Ron Paul will overtake the front-runner in the GOP race to win the nomination. If your fear is that a protest vote might actually elect someone with whom you disagree (if you do disagree with Paul’s positions) on many issues, is that likely? I’m among the most optimistic historically for Paul’s chances, and I’m resigned that we’ll be making a third party run once the primaries are over. I don’t think there is a thing to worry about.

If you plan to vote for McCain in the fall, the best way to send a message to the power brokers in the GOP is to send a shot across their bow by voting for Paul in the Primary. There is no candidate more hated among those folks, and it may be the only opportunity you have to send a clear message of your disapproval of the anointed candidate. If all you do is hold your nose and vote for McCain in November, you’ve only confirmed for them that you’re willing to do their bidding without any reservations about your own principles.


And what if Paul starts to actually pull more delegates than he already has? Well, Huckabee is still in there too, and will see a bump from Romney’s exit. With the delegates split three ways, we could actually push this thing into the convention without a winner. We could see a nominee not on the slate now, and with the message sent, we might get an authentic conservative through the back door.

For that to happen, conservatives have to send a message. The establishment thinks they’ve won this war, and I’d love to see them repudiated. A vote for McCain in the primary by a conservative is a complete repudiation of our principles. Do the right thing and stand for your principles in the primary, and if we’re lucky, you’ll be rewarded for your principled stand. If McCain still runs away with the nomination, you can always decide to take a principled stand again in November.

Once Again, Paul Runs Away With Military Donations

In the 4th quarter fund-raising race, Ron Paul once again led all candidates in donations from active duty members of the military.

It is worth noting that Paul received three times the amount of the next leading candidate, the odds on favorite for the GOP nod – John McCain.

It seems more people likely to get shot at prefer the humble foreign policy of Paul to the endless commitments to death and destruction exemplified by McCain. Not so amazing. What is amazing is that the rest of the populace apparently doesn’t share that outlook. In reality, I think they do, but it’s sad that most voters vote only based on ephemeral impressions.

Oh well. That cash will come in handy for the third party run that in all probability will be in full swing by the first week of June.

It Was a Grand Ole Party

Last one to leave – turn out the lights.


I’ve voted Republican most of my life, though in the interest of disclosure, I admit that I’ve always been more of a radical constitutionalist. Having been a vote that the GOP could solidly count on for 15 years, I broke with the GOP in 2004, opting to vote for Michael Peroutka for President in the general election. At that point, my exasperation with the party had grown so great, I voted for the socialist Sherrod Brown over Mike DeWine. I wasn’t a Brown supporter by any stretch, but given the massive lead Brown had, I figured it was a way to telegraph my disapproval with the direction in which the party was oriented.

I am, sad to say, ruling out a vote for any GOP candidate in the 2008 election season, excepting for the outside chance that Ron Paul will be at the top of the ticket. If I have to hold my nose and vote for socialist statism of one stripe or another, I’ll select the pure socialists who make no hedges about their intentions, and at least offer a person not interested in invading more sovereign nations an audience. A vote for the Republicans has become a vote for more war and increasingly entrenched fascism.

I’m under no illusions about my decision. I am not deluded to believe that my idealogical home is in the Democratic Party – I know that it is not. I am also not sending a message. I am done with the Republican Party, and hope to see it die an unceremonious death this election season. To me, it is the electoral equivalent of a mercy killing.

I held out great hope as the campaign season started. For the first time in my voting life, there was a candidate who was embracing the historical positions that had caused me to first self-identify as a Republican. But it appears that the GOP voters have rejected conservatism, opting instead to redefine what I understood it to mean to be a Republican.

I say “bring on McCain“. Regardless of the opponent, I predict a bloodbath at the polls, and not just at the top of the ticket. I predict that this election will go down as the closest corollary to the Little Big Horn on record. Not only will the Democratic nominee win an electoral landslide, the coattails will be long enough to hand the Democrats a daunting governing majority.

I’m not anxious to see the days of democratic domination return, but I am even less anxious to see what currently passes for conservatives to control the apparatus of government. While both parties are controlled by the neocons and their world-dominating agenda, there remains a truly restraining populist bent among the rank and file in the Democratic party.

In all likelihood, Dr. Paul will be on the ballot in one way or another in November, allowing me to stave off the lesser of two evils analytics. But if I had to pull a major party lever in November, I’d go with the lesser of those evils. Go Hillary (ouch!), and good riddance GOP.

And Now, What You’ve All Been Waiting For….

As noted in my post from last night, Guiliani is out as of today. His endorsement of McCain is illustrative of the inevitable coalescing of consensus that always comes when the establishment fears losing their grip over the process. They needed a split field long enough for one of the horses to float to the top of the heap, at which time the also-rans are unceremoniously pushed aside, lending their support to the consensus candidate. For today, that candidate is John McCain. I suspect after Super Tuesday, it will once again be Romney.


Tonight at 8, CNN will televise the California debate, live from the Reagan Library. As the field winnows down, expect to hear more from Dr. Paul. While he may not get more time proportionally, he’ll get more time by virtue of the fact that there are fewer candidates to vie for the time. And as we’ve seen, Dr. Paul does well in the debates. His principled, conservative outlook comes through loud and clear. As the field continues to cast off the casualties, he will get more time and exposure. I want to go on record as predicting a serious upswing in his support from here forward.

The next test for Paul is in Maine, which begins a three-day caucus process on Friday. The punditry is expecting him to make a respectable showing there. We should soon have some sort of clarity to the mess in Louisiana as well. Paul needs to go on the stage tonight, and point out to everyone in attendance and watching on TV that he has finished second or better in 3 of the last 4 states to hold primaries or caucuses. He needs to get across the idea that we are right where we expected to be and wanted to be – still standing and in great financial shape while the field around us packs it in. People like to back a winner, and Paul has to make a clear case that he can win. He needs to point out that we’ve had those three second (1 first?) place showings without the help of the mainstream media – but that they can’t ignore us much longer.

I’d love to see him say something metaphorically powerful. Maybe:

“This train is ready to leave the station. Our strategy is working, and this is where we begin to press forward. I invite the American people to join with me in sending a message to Washington: we are not willing to let things continue as they have been. We will not accept lip-service. We want a government responsive to the will of the people and observant of the rule of law – all of the law. We expect our government to operate within the bounds that we the people set for it. We are not wards of the state, but sovereign individuals with inalienable rights. We are the masters of this government, and we are not happy with your performance. We want our government back from the elites who control the media and try to influence the voters to select candidates who represent the interests of the elite corporatists while devastating the working people who are the backbone of this economy. We are winning over the hearts and minds of the American people who are waking up to find out that we’ve been had. Our campaign has finished first or second in three of the last four states to vote, and yet we are ignored. The will of the American people will not be denied. The party elites and the media will not tell the American people for whom they may vote. This train is leaving the station tonight, and we want all freedom loving people on board.”

Giuliani Out; McCain Frontrunner

After a third place showing in his ‘firewall’ state – Florida – Giuliani’s inauspicious exit from the race was hardly a surprise. What might not have been expected was the announcement that Giuliani would in fact drop out of the race tomorrow, and endorse John McCain for the nomination.


McCain’s victory is actually a boon to Paul supporters. By my calculations, Romney is the stronger competitor, in spite of his baggage. McCain is a caricature, and in spite of the Florida numbers, faces a tall climb once we get out of the open primaries.


Most states won’t be overruling the rules to allow independents to cross over. Am I the only one out here having a hard time imagining any scenario where McCain wins a majority of delegates? His only hope is a compromise at the convention, but that would lead to hell splitting wide open in the GOP.

And what of Huckabee? Is there anyone voting for him who thinks he is angling for anything beside McCain’s co-pilot seat?


For the requisite hedge: I am not saying that Paul is the odds-on favorite. He still faces a tough road.


If Paul is to ride his stealth strategy to a win, it is playing out as it has to. McCain’s win baffles most of the party. His presumable lead in delegates is made possible by the diluted field. He cannot ride 30% finishes to the nomination, but cannot win in any two-man field. McCain is in a tough spot. He doesn’t have a line to the nomination without a convention vote in my book. He needs Huckabee in the race. He is getting his high water mark, and only a continuation of the fracturing of the non-McCain vote keeps him viable as a frontrunner. And since I haven’t mentioned it yet – McCain is broke.

Romney is still the man to beat. The longer that McCain edges Romney the better. Romney is there to stay, but McCain has to keep winning.


With Thompson out in recent days, Giuliani out tomorrow, and Huckabee likely to drop out after Super Tuesday, I suspect we’ll see a new dynamic moving towards the half-way point in the race. Does Paul have the strategic plans in place to make his splash in a three way race? Is suspect that he has something in the works. I pray it is something profound.

The competition is weak. The strongest candidates (on paper) have left the field. McCain is demonstrably not a conservative, with huge negatives among the party base. It should be fun to see how the Huckabee voters warm up to the guy who lashed out at the ‘religious right’ in 2000. Romney’s shortcomings are legion and of the bottom shelf variety that can be easily demagogued for the most ignorant of the populace (read that: a majority of voters). Paul is the only conservative left; the closest thing to Ronald Reagan that the party has seen since ‘88. The economy is his strong suit, and has been central to his message all along – and not just since Michigan!

Paul is in position to make a realistic run at the nomination. And if not, he has a credible shot at being a power broker at a convention fight. Any seat at the table offers us an opportunity to educate more people about the promise of a return to liberty. Does he have the organization and plan in place to make a go of it?

go ron go

We shall see. Personally, I’m on the edge of my seat.

An Optimistic View

If you’re a died-in-the-wool Paulite like me, things are looking up.

Off the top, there are the recent coups in Louisiana (first, maybe second – we’re still waiting to see how that shakes out) and Nevada (2nd). In the most recent release from Rasmussen Reports for Georgia, Paul is polling at 12%, and is clearly ascendant in many of the super Tuesday states.

And then there’s the money issue. Paul has more on hand than anyone else, and the only one with prospects to beat Paul in the cash race moving ahead is Mitt Romney. But his access to a personal fortune is also one of his achilles heels. So Paul will not be making the financially driven decisions that many of the candidates will be facing. We are truly poised to join the front-runners through attrition – and that is a great way to do it!

mitts money

But wait – there’s more…. have you read about all of the endorsements and additions to the campaign team in recent days? There was the Barry Goldwater Jr. Endorsement; the Norma McColvey endorsement; the Peter Schiff endorsement (the most meaningful to me); the Tom McClintock hedged endorsement; and the Donald Luskin endorsement.


It’s hard to believe that we’ve been into the primary season for less than a month. While our route to the nomination has not been according to the normal script, we are better off today than at any other point in this campaign. We are making headway, and anything can happen. The field is incredibly weak, and Dr. Paul could be poised to break out and away from the pack. No one knows the future, but I can’t help but be optimistic. We’ve got a lot of reasons to be, and many of our competitors don’t. They’ve got to hope that they can keep the electorate away from the message through ad hominem charges of Paul being ‘unelectable’. It seems that fewer and fewer people are buying that line….. they’re just sitting on the ball and praying. They have used up their arsenal, and are hoping it was enough.

Personally, I don’t think it was. But we will see.