Ron Paul

Ron Paul and the GOP Convention


"What [Ron Paul supporters] need to do is prove to the Republican Party that they are not just a radical fringe that can be completely ignored, like in 2008, but that they are the loyal opposition, the other big wing of the party," says Reason Senior Editor Brian Doherty, author of Ron Paul's Revolution

Doherty says that even though Paul didn't win Nebraska and will not have a prime speaking slot at the GOP Convention, Paul and his supporters will still be there in full force.

"His fans are unstoppable…There will be hundreds of them on the convention floor."

Paul has influenced the GOP unequivocally in terms on monetary policy, "an issue that had no traction whatsoever until five years ago," says Doherty, "and now he can get every Republican in the House and plenty of Democrats to vote for 'Audit the Fed' bills." 

ReasonTV's Nick Gillespie caught up with Doherty at FreedomFest to discuss what can be expected from Ron Paul and his supporters heading into the convention and the future of the GOP.

Shot by Tracy Oppenhiemer and Alex Manning. Edited by Oppenheimer. About 4 minutes.

Held each July in Las Vegas, FreedomFest is attended by over 2,000 limited-government enthusiasts and libertarians a year. ReasonTV spoke with over two dozen speakers and attendees and will be releasing interviews over the coming weeks.

Go to for downloadable versions and subscribe to ReasonTV's YouTube Channel to receive notifications when new material goes live.

NEXT: Don't Give Government Too Much Credit

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. lol, gotta jsut love them bought and paid for politicians.

    1. And spammers. LOL.

  2. Holy christ Brian. You are in desperate need of a good night’s sleep, a haircut, and a shave. Not necessarily in that order. You’ve gone from “Marxist Professor” to “Bum in a tie”.

    1. Did you hear? He wrote a book.

  3. “What [Ron Paul supporters] need to do is prove… that they are the loyal opposition…

    Said it before, I’ll say it again. If the Republicans were serious about economic conservatism, they would use libertarian economic views as the ‘bad cop’ argument, and then compromise by only cutting, say, 10-15% of the budget.

    But that would mean giving up power.

    1. The Republicans are mercantilists. Mercantilism has always been incompatible with free-markets. The Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations was written in an attempt to convince mercantilists to adopt free markets and abandon their corporatist ways.

      1. The Dems are mercantilists too. TEAM RED and TEAM BLUE are exactly the same, it’s just that TEAM BLUE has branded itself more with guild support (unions) while TEAM RED has branded itself more with mercantilist support (corporations). In practice, though, they are essentially the same thing. They both are fueled by vested interests with heavy lobbying presences and an intense interest in hobbling competition.

        1. Mercantilism serves the state in far more obvious ways than free markets.

          1. Of course, so it makes sense for them to embrace it. Statism, unfortunately, is very logical from certain perspectives. And one of those perspectives is politicians.

      2. It’s amazing how much Smith got right, but then 1776 was a pretty good year for political economic thought.

        1. Except for the Labor Theory of Value. He promoted the heck out of that turkey of an idea.

          1. Agreed. To be fair, though, labor was a much larger component of value in the 18th century than it is today.

            1. No it wasn’t

              1. If you want to be prickly about it; value is subjective so you are right. But if you want to say that labor made up a larger component of the cost of the item, that is also correct as the industrial revolution started around the mid-18th century.

                1. Labor is the only “cost” of any item.

  4. “What [Ron Paul supporters] need to do is prove to the Republican Party that they are not just a radical fringe that can be completely ignored, like in 2008, but that they are the loyal opposition, the other big wing of the party,”

    The fundementalists and neo-conservatives will brook no opposition, loyal or otherwise.

    1. If so, then the GOP is dead. The Paul people are young. They are going to be here when the neo-cons and theo-cons are long gone. The real question is will they be with the Gop or will they be with some other party.

      1. “neo-cons” and “theo-cons” were once young, too.

  5. “Paul has influenced the GOP unequivocally in terms on monetary policy…”
    Maybe…too bad he has had no influence on the profligate spending on the military and unfunded wars. On that he has been a dismal failure.
    But I give him credit…he tries.

    1. I know you quoted but exactly HOW did Ron Paul influence the GOP on monetary policy. His only contribution, the absurdly misnamed Audit the Fed, was ignored by Republicans when it was voted on. The Dems put that little trick in Dodd-Frank.

      (question is for any RP fan)

      1. I agree…I am not sure he has had that much influence. Has he influenced Republican willingness to cut programs like social security, education, medicare, etc.? They have harped on that for a long time.
        They just want to spend money on their agenda, which is always the military, and they still want to do that.
        But like I said, he tries.

        1. There are not that many Ron Paul fans on this board.

          Dumbya fans? Lots of those.

          1. That does surprise me. If you could pick one President who is anti-libertarian, it would be Bush. Taking away personal freedoms, never balancing a budget, managing with little regard for the bottom line, never vetoing a spending bill, invading other countries,and then when times got tough, turning to big government for the solution.
            But yeah, he gets defended here.

            1. Yeah, but Bush had a fake ranch and a flightsuit.

              Carter was the real libertarian with all his deregulation and non-intervention but the peanut gallery here thinks otherwise.

              Carter even appointed a dollar hawk at the Fed who killed the 70s inflation.

              1. But back to the original point in the article, I do give Ron Paul some credit for being consistent. Libertarians like the guy, Republicans do not. The attempts at trying to link the two are at times funny.
                I think many here are not libertarian, but really Republican apologists. To me, that is also the Tea Party.

            2. I don’t see Bush getting defended here except (non libertarian) John’s approval of Bush’s WoT and invasion of ME countries.

              Or do you guys think saying “Obama is worse” is somehow a defense of Bush?

              Seriously, where does Bush get defended here? (other than the one exception I noted above)

              1. Well, Obama is worse than Bush is enough. Bush was the worst President in our lifetime, and I will tell you the simple reason why.
                9/11 changed everything about this country forever. Less freedom, changes in our lifestyle, and near financial ruin, which the money spent on homeland security, the military, and wars played a large part.
                And 9/11 happened under Bush’s watch, not Obama. You can’t point to one thing Obama did, or has presided over, that has had a worse effect on this country. And to prove how inept Bush was, he ignored the warnings from people like Richard Clarke, as well as a briefing 5 weeks before.
                To me, saying Bush was better than Obama is a defense of him, and laughable.

                1. And one more thing. 9/11 was in Bush’s first year, and in his last year, he presided over the near financial ruin of the US, and a worldwide recession.
                  That, my friend, is that man’s bookends: 9/11 and financial ruin.
                  But hey, Bono liked him because he was really good with aid to Africa.

            3. But yeah, he gets defended here.
              Show me a partisan defense of Bush by any libertarian here.

          2. You never fail to amaze me, shrek. How can a person put together sentences with decent spelling and grammar, totally semantically coherent, and yet have the IQ of a sea cucumber? You’re a fucking miracle of science.

          3. There are not that many Ron Paul fans on this board. Dumbya fans? Lots of those.

            Kill yourself and make the world a little less retarded.

    2. On that he has been a dismal failure.

      A bit harsh. He’s done just about everything that one man can be expected to do to bring attention to the destructive course the federal government has taken. And if you think of it in terms of the rather large movement he’s started, it could reasonably be argued that he’s done more than any man could be expected to do.

      1. Yeah, he did a lot for one man. And he set the stage for a movement that may one day substantively change these things for the better.

      2. Maybe, Karl. I like the guy. He has courage. Lets face it, it is not easy time and again calling out Republicans for knee-jerk military responses, and excess spending. And he did it in every debate, when everyone else disagreed with him

        I was just thinking…in the Republican primary, Ron Paul was continually ridiculed and made fun of, particularly by John McCain. Not so this time, so you may be right…maybe he has had some influence. But not enough for me.

        But I love it when he speaks. Most Republicans begin to cringe. They just hope he goes away quietly.

        1. I meant in the 2008 Republican primary.

        2. Most Republicans begin to cringe. They just hope he goes away quietly.

          Let’s hope he doesn’t.

          While this is the last time he’ll actually run for president, he will obviously remain a powerful voice with the pro-freedom movement for (hopefully!) some time to come. At some point he’ll have to have a successor; and while logic might dictate that his son will take up that mantle, I believe Rand may have shot himself in the foot by endorsing Romney.

          1. Rand is not Ron. Far from it.
            But I am with you…I hope he speaks at the Republican Convention. I told some friends a long time ago that he is like a thorn in the Republican side, always reminding them of what a true fiscal conservative looks like. Today’s Republicans don’t like that image.

  6. The GOP has announced that Ron Paul will be on the first ballot nomination at the convention in Tampa. How are you missing this. Nebraska was irrelevant. Get up to speed please. You are passing out the media line of false information. Check out Ben Swann and Rachael Maddow. It is my understanding that Ron Paul WILL be granted a 15 minute speech because he IS in nomination. This Nebraska hokum is getting old. RON PAUL 2012~!

  7. Ron Paul is NOT a Republican. He’s a bizarre old kook. I wish he would re-register as a Democrat and suck votes from Obama. He would serve us all better were he to do so.

  8. Libertarians are the only real Republicans left (as in those who advocate a limited minarchist republic as the ideal form of government).

    The future of the GOP lies with Libertarian Republicans. And it was Ron Paul who introduced libertarianism to an entire generation of young people who sure as hell would never have been exposed to these ideas in government schools, subsidized ivory towers OR churches.

  9. Superb information, incredible webpage style, carry on the great work.
    ED Hardy Sunglasses
    cheap sunglasses

  10. Some people may not want to admit it or realize it but the GOP party is changing. Politics in general are changing really. These days there are more people aware of what is going on in politics and wanting to make a change then ever before. I think the Libertarian party will play a role but so will Ron Paul. Ron Paul supporters have been in full force since 2008 and will play a big role in shaping the party. I blogged about it on my own blog over at http://www.politicalfreedomblo…..-politics/ to give full details on this.

  11. The only way the old guard of the GOP is really going to “get” this message is if the Tea Party movement does a “Ross Perot” this election. That is, give 12% to Gary Johnson even though it will win the election for Obama — and then tell the GOP we’ll repeat it until the GOP goes back to nominating small-government candidates.

    Don’t worry about Obama putting more people on the Supreme Court — the new Senate will be ours and won’t confirm them.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.