Despite finishing fourth in the South Carolina primary, Ron Paul was upbeat during his speech Saturday night, giving one of his finest presentations as a presidential candidate. Ron hit all the high notes about his campaign and reminded his supporters that the cause of liberty will not be won overnight; it is a multifaceted process. Educating people about crony capitalism, the FED, the federal budget and entitlements, civil liberties, and our interventionist foreign policy so they will vote for the liberty presidential candidate may take more time than just this presidential campaign.
After only three contests, won by three different candidates, there is no clear front runner. Ron Paul will remain in the race to win as many delegates to the 2012 GOP presidential convention in Tampa. If Ron does not have enough delegates to win the nomination and neither does anyone else, my prediction a year ago will come true, a brokered convention. With several hundred delegates, Ron could force many issues, including putting Rand Paul on the ticket as either the presidential nominee or VP nominee. Wouldn’t that be juicy?
Nevertheless, given the results of the Iowa caucuses and the two primaries, Ron’s supporters and organization will make him competitive in every state after Florida, where only 50 delegates are at stake in the winner take all contest.
The take away from the South Carolina primary is clear. If Ron Paul looked like Cary Grant he would have gotten more of the women vote. If Ron was as articulate as say former New Yorkgovernor Mario Cuomo, who spoke at a talk radio convention in California more than 15 years ago give the best defense of the First Amendment I ever heard, he would be winning every primary because his message is the right one. If Ron could give a noninterventionist response that even the most die hard warmonger could embrace, then Ron would be the odds on favorite to win the nomination. This is the reality of the primary season. Nevertheless, Ron’s SC vote in 2008 was 15,000, last night it was nearly 80,000. That was a spectacular improvement in a state where the GOP voters love the military-industrial complex, unlimited war, d apparently the welfare state as well and a libertine candidate. (Yes, Newt Gingrich is the GOP’s Bill Clinton, articulate, brash, and ethically challenged.)
However, there is still time to tweak Ron’s message so more “mainstream” Republicans vote for him in upcoming primaries. He received only 10% of the Republican vote last night and more than double that of Independents who voted.
In the next two debates in Florida, Ron should point out as many times as possible that he voted against every unbalanced budget in his twelve terms in the House, while both Gingrich and Santorum (G&S) voted for more spending, higher deficits, and did not criticize the Federal Reserve’s inflationary policies. Ron should just rattle off all the spending that G&S voted for. They will come back and say they made mistakes. Ron should then say when fiscal conservatism was up for a vote, you voted for big spending. Now you claim you are born again fiscal conservatives. Where were you when you the country needed you to stand up for taxpayers? Ron should also say that both G&S are asking for voters to forgive their past support for big government. That’s like serial rapists saying they should not go to jail because they have taken a vow of chastity.
Both G&S would explode being compared to serial rapists who want forgiveness. But that’s exactly what they are selling to the voters. Now they we are running for president, they promise to be for limited government. Hogwash.
Ron Paul single-handedly created the modern liberty movement, but at age 76 he is perceived by some (especially the 65 and over crowd,) as too old, not photogenic enough and not electable president. However, a recent poll has Ron Paul in a statistical dead heat with Barack Obama in the general election. So why do people think Ron is unelectable? The mainstream media have marginalized Ron’s candidacy from day one and generally ignoring him in their news reports throughout the primary season.
The Internet, as Ron mentioned last night, is playing an important role in getting his message out. The liberty movement will expand because of the Internet and bring down the welfare-warfare state just as fax machines helped bring down the Iron Curtain and the Soviet Union. The truth cannot be hidden from the people.
Finally, in 2004 I had hoped Ron would have challenged George Bush in the GOP presidential primary. Ron would have made the case that the Iraq invasion was wrong, the Patriot Act was a threat to our civil liberties and that the FED was fueling a housing bubble. Although Ron probably would not have won the GOP presidential nomination, he would have been in a position to win the 2008 presidential nomination. I keep on thinking what if. But it does not matter.
Ron Paul deserves our unequivocal support and admiration for leading another chapter in the liberty movement at age 76. While most individuals his age are retired and spending a lot of time on the golf course, Ron Paul’s love of liberty and country has made him one of the most important figures in American political history. Future generations will remember the humble doctor from Texas as the man who said no to statism and stood up for everyone’s God given rights to life, liberty and property throughout the early years of the 21st century Revolution.