Monday, 01 September 2008

Ron Paul Will Be Heard in Minneapolis

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Ron PaulA number of former GOP presidential candidates — Sam Brownback, Rudy Giuliani, Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, and Fred Thompson — are scheduled to speak at the Republican National Convention, where they will be expected to display party unity and support John McCain, the GOP’s presumptive standard-bearer. Ron Paul will not be among them.

Nor was he wanted. “I didn't expect much and I didn't get much, because they don't want somebody there who will emphasize where they're coming short,” Reuters news service quoted Paul as saying. The Grand Old Party is not what it used to be, according to Paul. As the Texas congressman made clear on the campaign trail, the GOP is coming up short by abandoning traditional Republican positions in favor of big government at home and foreign interventionism — including the Iraq War — abroad. That message garnered Paul more than one million votes during this year’s Republican primaries and caucuses, but it’s a message the McCain wing of the GOP does not want heard in Minneapolis-St. Paul.

Nevertheless, the message will still be heard while the convention is taking place, though not at the convention itself. Paul has organized his own gathering, called “Rally for the Republic,” in Minneapolis, where he will continue saying what he said on the campaign trail and also launch his new “Campaign for Liberty” movement. He does not intend to crash the GOP Convention at the Xcel Energy Center in neighboring St. Paul, but he does intend that his message of liberty be heard.

Events associated with Ron Paul’s “Rally for the Republic” include a “real politics” training school on Sunday, August 31, and a leadership summit on Monday, September 1, the day the GOP Convention opens. But the big Ron Paul event is the rally itself, which will be held at the Target Center on September 2. About 10,000 tickets have been sold for the event, which will feature not only Ron Paul but other speakers including former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura, former Arizona Congressman Barry Goldwater, Jr. (son of the 1964 GOP presidential nominee), Ludwig von Mises Institute president Lew Rockwell, and John Birch Society president John F. McManus.

The Republicans at Excel Energy Center will surely take notice, regardless of whether or not they acknowledge it. But according to the Rocky Mountain News, at least one member of the Colorado GOP delegation is planning to skip the Republican Convention in order to attend the Ron Paul rally. “I’m going to be with Ron Paul and the people who love freedom and liberty,” GOP alternate delegate Joby Weeks told the paper.

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