Ron Paul’s Last Hurrah
Recently by Justin Raimondo: The
‘Cairo 19? Got What They Deserve
At this point it is clear that Rep. Ron Paul is not going to be
the presidential nominee of the Republican Party. Yet it seems likely
that he will outlast all his rivals but for Romney, and that he
will have a substantial bloc of delegates at the convention. Paul
has the money, and the grassroots support, to make it all the way
to Tampa and beyond.
Its when we get to the beyond, however, that
things get interesting.
What, exactly, is Pauls endgame? What does he want? This
is the question the pundits are asking, and the answer is maddeningly
On the one hand, Republican primary voters are increasingly open
to his message of real free markets (as opposed to the crony capitalism
championed by most Republicans), the defense of civil liberties
(against largely Republican antagonists), and a noninterventionist
foreign policy (an idea opposed by the leadership of both parties).
He is regularly getting around 20 percent of the vote in GOP primaries,
and his supporters are mostly (albeit not exclusively) young, independents
inclined to vote Republican, and not that well off (under $50,000
His support grew by the day, in spite of a media blackout
and when simply refusing to report on his campaign didnt put
a dent in his support, the mainstream media turned to smear tactics.
That hasnt worked, either.
On the other hand, Pauls support within the GOP has a definite
ceiling: Id be surprised if his poll numbers exceeded 25 percent
in any states primary. This is a commentary not on Paul, but
on the evolution of the Republicans, whose brand has been sullied
by eight years of George W. Bushs big-government conservatism.
Since many Republican presidential primaries are closed, Pauls
political fortunes are left in the hands of those who are registered
members of a party committed to eternal war, corporate subsidies,
and the cult of the presidency. The political independents and disaffected
Democrats who make up half his base are prevented from voting for
him in closed GOP primaries, which is why we see polls showing him
in a dead heat with Barack Obama in the general election juxtaposed
against other polls showing him in the upper teens in the GOP primary
GOP leaders are living in fear of a Paul third-party candidacy
in the general election: Polls show Paul would garner 18 percent
of the vote as an independent, and as the election draws nearer
and scrutiny of Romney gets more intense, I fully expect that number
the rest of the article
Raimondo [send him mail]
is editorial director of Antiwar.com
and is the author of An
Enemy of the State: The Life of Murray N. Rothbard and Reclaiming
the American Right: The Lost Legacy of the Conservative Movement.
© 2012 Chronicles
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