Ron Paul moves into Minnesota this weekend on his continued quest to come into Tampa with as many Paul delegates as possible.
*How Ron Paul people are shaking up the state GOP in Minnesota, where Paul may well walk out after this weekend's state convention controlling its delegation to the national convention in Tampa in August. You are wondering: what does T-Paw think?
Former Gov. Tim Pawlenty, a Republican, said this week that he thinks the GOP establishment should welcome Paul supporters with open arms and embrace their energy instead of view it as a negative.
"You have to tip your cap to them. They show up. They're working hard," Pawlenty said of the Paul faction after delivering a policy speech Monday at the University of Minnesota Humphrey School of Public Affairs. "So we want them to be part of the Republican team."
*The Star-Tribune focuses on the conflict between Paulites and other Republicans in Minnesota:
Paul supporters have already flexed their might in the state's Republican Party. They claim 20 of the 24 national delegates already selected at local Republican gatherings. They ousted a GOP insider from the party's ruling body and thwarted some sitting lawmakers' attempts at party positions….The 12-term Texas congressman will address the convention Friday night. It's a privilege he was denied four years ago and supporters have stewed about the slight ever since.
"Starting with the Minnesota State Convention this weekend, our movement has an opportunity to secure more delegates, take control of more local and state parties … to achieve lasting victory in the years to come," said John Tate, Paul's campaign manager.
That promise to "take control" is making some longtime Republicans queasy. Republicans who have labored in the party trenches for years consider the Paul supporters upstarts who refuse to see the difference between Democratic President Obama and Romney.
"The hideous Ron Paul invasion of the Minnesota Republican Party is not quite over … but enough evidence is in hand to draw some grim conclusions for those who are not enamored of a … fringe cult political figure who speaks to alienated, fairly ignorant and frequently unwashed lost souls," said longtime Republican activist John Gilmore on his blog this week.
Gilmore said he has no doubt that Paul's support will overflow during this year's Republican state convention.
On Saturday, state delegates are scheduled to select delegates to the party's national convention in August in Tampa, Fla.
Behind the scenes, party officials have worked frantically to keep the antipathy between the pro-Romney folks and Paul supporters at bay during the two-day state convention.
State Republican Party Chairman Pat Shortridge said he hopes that in exchange for Paul being welcomed, his supporters will allow the convention to proceed without conflict.
"Everybody is happy as far as I can tell," said Shortridge, who was picked as a state delegate by the Paul-friendly "Liberty Caucus."
Paul will be allowed to speak at the convention only after delegates finish endorsing a U.S. Senate candidate, but his voice may be heard even before he appears. In the three-way Senate contest, Paul and many of his Minnesota supporters are backing the bid of first-term state Rep. Kurt Bills.
*NPR on Paul in Minnesota, which points out it seems near certain he'll come out of it controlling the delegation--that is, having "won Minnesota."
*The Paul folks efforts to win delegates in the Michigan convention also this weekend, from Detroit News.
*With Paul people controlling the state Party in Nevada, Atlantic reports on Romney's people starting their own "shadow party" to do the pro-Romney things they fear the real Party won't.
*Ed Morrissey says that in his long game of Party influence, Ron Paul has already won.
*Talking Points Memo on fear of Paul-fan generated tumult in Tampa, inside and outside.
*New Paulite SuperPAC Liberty For All, spending over half a million to promote Kentucky federal congressional candidate Thomas Massie.
*Although the campaign itself says it has no problem with apparent efforts on the part of the party openly supporting the candidate who is not yet its official nominee, Paul partisans in Clark County, Nevada, called for the resignation of RNC chief Reince Priebus for that.
*Mark Hendrickson at Forbes with the wild idea that Romney might be able to appeal to Paul people by promising an actual hard halt to spending no more than $3 trillion a year.
*He still says he has "no plans" to make a third party run. Deadlines to get on the presidential ballot in most states is looming, though they stretch from June to August depending on the state in question.
*W. James Antle on the Paul strategy post "no more active campaigning in primary states" announcement, from American Conservative.
*Time with a history of online comments from Paul fans.
*Business Insider on my new book, Ron Paul's Revolution: The Man and the Movement He Inspired.