Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) will no longer be actively campaigning in forthcoming primaries for the Republican presidential nomination. But the libertarian politician's legacy—including controversial yet popular stands on everything from auditing the Federal Reserve to withdrawing troops from abroad to radically cutting government borrowing and spending—is just getting started.
Paul, says Brian Doherty, a Reason senior editor and author of the new Ron Paul's Revolution: The Man and the Movement He Inspired, "is leaving in his wake a set of institutions, and a set of hundreds of thousands of energized intelligent youngsters who are unquestionably going to shape American politics moving down the line."
Doherty argues Paul's long-term effect on the GOP will be similar to that of Barry Goldwater, the Arizona senator who, despite a crushing electoral loss to Lyndon Johnson in 1964, energized and transformed the Republican Party into the limited-government force that elected Ronald Reagan in 1980.
"His fans understand that Ron Paul is not just out to win an election," says Doherty. "Even if the [party bosses] shut the door in his face at the Republican convention as they did in 2008,…the ideas he injected into the party [and politics] are not going away anytime soon."
About 4:40 minutes. Produced by Sharif Matar, with camera by Matar and Tracy Oppenheimer.