Campaigns/Elections

Ron Paul Can Stick Around

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Saul Anuzis of the Michigan GOP, last spotted trying to bar Ron Paul from future presidential debates, has changed his mind:

After consulting with my fellow RNC members, I believe there isn't anything to be gained by advancing a petition aimed solely at removing Congressman Paul from the debates.

Bravo, Saul, for coming around. But I can't agree with your other point:

I do however think we should continue to look at the bigger picture, the problem of how our party is going to adapt to the new realities of this very long primary season….

We have given 10 candidates 3 hours of national TV time. Our many local and state parties have opened our doors to them. And we have certainly invited all them to help us raise money. In short, the so called 3rd tier candidates have had their chance to make an impression and if they cannot poll beyond 1 or 2 percentage points of support, they are simply getting in the way of the real debate of how to move our party and our country forward.

It's 2007. It's spring of 2007. This early in the season, most Americans still can't tell Rudy McRomney from RuPaul Tancredo. It's kind of difficult to make an impression when hardly any real-world voters are paying attention yet. The best argument against those 10-man debates isn't the possibility that the low-rung candidates will get in the audience's way. It's the possibility that the low-rung candidates will make up 70 percent of the audience themselves.

The GOP already has a process for winnowing down the field. It's called the primaries. If you want to speed up the system, either start the voting earlier or start the debates much later.