Policy positions aside, what follows are characteristics in a person that would serve us very, very well in a President.
1. He tells the truth.
It is not fun to hear that our country is going bankrupt, or that our government is out of control, or that we are losing our liberties at a dizzying rate. It is scary and upsetting. But if we are to regain the country that we like to think we live in, the truth must be heard. Dr. Paul discusses with great frankness the actual reasons for troublesome conditions we now face, and while this may be bitter medicine, it does point the way to reversing the spiral and regaining our footing as a peaceful, free, and prosperous nation.
2. He is unflappable.
When others are in an uproar, Congressman Paul demonstrates a remarkable level of equanimity. On the Tonight Show with Jay Leno (Jan 7th), for example, he discussed FOX's shameless decision to exclude him from their "Republican debate" without the slightest hint of rancor or hostility; he even showed a sense of humor. When he has been scoffed at in debates, he has ignored the jeers and gone on to explain his positions in a mild and deliberate manner. This calm demeanor would be a great asset in dealing with the myriad clamorings that make their way into the Oval Office.
3. His story does not change with the political winds.
For many long years, Dr. Paul has been talking about the same crucial topics: sound money; honoring the Constitution; protecting life, liberty and property; friendly relations with other nations and entangling alliances with none; maintaining a strong national defense; honoring our veterans, etc. It doesn't seem to matter where he goes or who is listening — the story remains the same. Wouldn't it be nice to know that the President of the United States had an unswerving commitment to principles of freedom that you could depend upon, once he was in office?
4. He is polite.
If you notice how Dr. Paul behaves in debates, you will see that any annoyance he demonstrates is strictly on policy matters. No matter how much pressure he is under, he is unfailingly polite and respectful, and does not join the game of tossing out rude barbs to trip up or embarrass other candidates. Consider how important might be the simple fact of Presidential good manners in dealing with testy foreign nations.
5. He obeys his oath of office.
When Congressmen (and Presidents) take office, they take the following oath: I, loyal citizen of the Republic, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.” In ten terms in Congress, Dr. Paul has an untarnished record of adhering to this oath. Who else can say that? Nobody. It is, sad to say, practically unheard of. And if we ever needed it in anybody, surely it is in the head of the Executive branch.
6. He is open about what he is doing.
An example of this can be found on Dr. Paul's campaign website, where in prominent display are the totals, minute by minute, of money flowing into his coffers from campaign contributors. I've seen no other candidate do this. It is a small example, perhaps, but it is telling.
7. He is neither owned nor cowed by special interests.
In his years in the House of Representatives, Congressman Paul has proven beyond doubt that he cannot be bought. Lobbyists, I am told, don't even bother trying to get in to see him, since they know that if government funding of their pet projects would be unconstitutional, they are wasting their time. The pressures on a President to bow to powerful interests are sure to be tremendous, and a man who can stand up to them is a very great man indeed.
8. He believes in the America of our Founders.
It has been a slow and painful awakening for some of us to realize that the America in which we now live is not the one our Founders gave us. Sadly, our peace, prosperity and freedom are all under assault. We still have a lot to be thankful for, there is no doubt of that, but we cannot afford to let our freedom keep slipping away, and I want the guy who remembers where we came from and wants to make good the original Revolution.
9. He is modest.
When Congressman Paul talks about his success, he attributes it to the popularity of the ideas he espouses. It is the ideas, not the man, that are carrying this movement, as he has repeatedly said. But the truth is that in the world today, it takes a giant of a man to carry this torch, and he, who is such a man, carries it with grace and modesty. This suggests to me that he cares more for the ideas and for the freedom of his countrymen than he does for his own ambition, and who wouldn't want a President like that?
10. He addresses the issues that matter.
There is always political noise about something, but Dr. Paul cuts under the fray to get at what is causing situations to occur. This sort of approach lends itself to solutions. It is interesting to consider that under a Paul administration, the tide might be reversed, and we might actually regain some of our freedom and prosperity and peace.
11. He is courageous.
If we ever needed a brave man in office, it is now. The pressures that threaten freedom in our land are formidable, and a mere politician, I think, could not stem the tide. Only a statesman could do that, and in Dr. Paul, by the grace of God, we have such a man. Even he could not do it alone, though, and it is heart-warming to see the great numbers of people who are rising up to rally around this cause. This is a movement of historic proportions, and may give us the best chance we'll ever have to restore the foundations of our Republic.
12. He is a nice person.
The President is the first and most public Ambassador of the United States of America. Dr. Paul shows in many ways that he would uphold this responsibility admirably. He demonstrates through example the tenets of his faith (like wanting to treat other nations the way we would like other nations to treat us); he demonstrates professionalism and honesty, scholarship and humor, compassion and integrity. By example alone, he would improve America's standing in the world.
Elizabeth Cameron [send her mail] is a writer and farmer who lives and works on a small, diversified homestead in Illinois.