Ron Paul's Long, Continuing March Through the Nevada GOP

Betsy Woodruff at National Review last week revisited how Ron Paul people are continuing to shape the Republican Party, focused on Nevada.

The article is largely based on the perspective of one Nevada activist, former party state vice chair James Smack, but worth a read. After summing up how Party apparatchiks pissed off Paul people by prematurely shutting down the state convention in 2008, here's the nub:

what [Smack] describes as “a conservative alliance” came together. It was about 30 people, most of whom had been 2008 state-convention delegates. They didn’t all love Ron Paul, but they all wanted more conservative candidates at the state and national levels. Some came and went; some entered the group only after its initial establishment. If one member found a project to work on, he or she would call a meeting to rally the others.

It was like a conservative steering committee, adds Smack. People pushed for the passage of resolutions and the election of state party officers. After a couple of years, members of the group had spread throughout party leadership in the state. The Nevada Republican central committee started to skew conservative. Smack himself rose to vice chairman of the state party and national committeeman. Jim Wheeler, another member, won a spot as a state assemblyman, and members of the group have grabbed county chairmanships and the chairmanship of the state budget committee. Diana Orrock, a Ron Paul supporter, became the national committeewoman. And at the Republican National Committee’s winter meeting last month, she introduced the anti-NSA resolution that made national headlines as a significant change for the GOP.

The state central committee and the Nevada party are leaning much more libertarian these days, she tells NRO. But she doesn’t feel that’s the case for the party’s national officials. So there’s an appetite for the kinds of primary challenges that make national party leaders cringe.

And there’s not a lot of love among the new Nevada Republican leadership for some of the GOP’s brightest stars.

The Nevada GOP will welcome “any and all presidential candidates,” Smack says. But it will lean toward folks such as Senators Rand Paul, Mike Lee, and Ted Cruz and Congressman Justin Amash. “It’ll be a little bit cooler reception for, say, Governor Chris Christie or somebody of that nature.”

Past blogging by me on Paulites in Nevada, from January 2013 and July 2013.

For the beginnings of this zany saga, see my book Ron Paul's Revolution: The Man and the Movement He Inspired.

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    All Free State Projectarians, swarm on Nevada!

  • Cytotoxic||

    This is great. We are seizing control. Does their love of freedom extend to immigration?

  • DJF||

    Yes they believe that citizens of a country have the freedom to determine who comes into their country.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Psst. That's not freedom.

  • The Original Jason||

    I wonder if anyone's doing that in California...

  • Almanian!||

    Seems like the Nev GOP could use help. They couldn't unseat Harry Reid, which you'd think woulda been fairly easy.

    Of course, the GOP couldn't unseat The President™ (PBUH), so it's likely they're hopeless.

    Declaration of Independents Types, Assemble! Or not.

  • RishJoMo||

    Dude does not seem to ahve a clue man.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Considering Ron Paul's ultra-conservative positions on abortion and gay marriage (including DOMA) ... how can anyone seriously consider him libertarian? He's like Rick Santorum with spending cuts -- even supported Pat Buchanan after his Libertarian Party presidential campaign.

    Barry Goldwater said the Moral Majority was a serious threat to his party, but even Goldwater never envisioned this level of infiltration by the American Taliban.


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