Republican Congressman Ron Paul of Texas has long been a problem to the Republican party.
A member of the House for more than two decades, and a Presidential nominee of the Libertarian Party in the past, as well as having been a candidate for the GOP nomination for President in 2008, Paul is much admired by many libertarians and young people of college age who find his views fascinating.
Paul has been a strong critic of many federal government agencies, and would love to wipe out the Federal Reserve System.
Paul is also a critic of any violations of civil liberties, and was opposed to the Patriot Act, passed after September 11 in a fit of patriotism and hysteria.
He also is a critic of our military interventions overseas, and calls for bringing home our troops from all of the many nations we have military and naval bases, arguing that we should not be an “Empire”.
All this is very appealing to many, even though at times, Ron Paul comes across as a bit weird and whacky on a personal level. 🙂
The problem for the GOP is that Ron Paul appeals to many in the base, but not to the leadership of the party, who try to ignore him. He was ridiculed by both Rudy Guiliani and Mitt Romney during the Presidential debate season in 2007-2008.
But Ron Paul won the Conservative Political Action Conference straw poll recently, and now has ended up just one vote behind Mitt Romney in a similar straw poll at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference this past week.
So what does the GOP do about Ron Paul? He is totally against the typical Republican attitude toward big business, civil liberties, and foreign policy. He is a mosquito who bites the Republican body politic, and is seen as a pest.
So one wonders if Ron Paul has any chance to be a serious factor in the Presidential Election of 2012. It would have to be said that is highly doubtful, and the fact that Ron Paul will be 77 years old in 2012 also rules against any influence, other than being an annoyance.
The one hope that Ron Paul could have an influence on the future of the GOP is the fact that his son, Rand Paul, is running in the GOP primary for the Senate in Kentucky. Were Rand Paul, who sounds very much like his father, to win the nomination and triumph in the Senate race in November, we might very well have not heard the last of the Paul “dynasty”! 🙂