The Contenders: Ron Paul
Sure, November 2008 is nearly two years away, but it’s
apparently never too early to declare one’s intention to run for president, and thus it’s never too early to get to know the people who might be the next leader of the free world. This month we’ll be taking a brief look at them.
Status: Has Exploratory Committee
Republican Congressman Ron Paul voted AGAINST the war in Iraq. He also ran as the Libertarian candidate for President in 1988. He regularly votes against the Republican agenda, and has earned the nickname “Dr. No” from his fellow party members. He’s not a liberal dressed in Republican clothing, though. He’s just a very firm believer in “small government.” He votes against government regulation at every opportunity, even if the regulation would limit something he personally disagrees with- like abortion.
Paul was born in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania where he attended Gettysburg College for his bachelor’s degree. He went on to get a medical degree at Duke University, and did his internship and residency at a hospital in Detroit. Paul then served as a flight surgeon in the U.S. Air Force for five years, during which time he also trained in obstetrics and gynecology. He has delivered over 4,000 babies.
In 1968, he and his wife Carol moved to Surfside Beach, Texas, where he began his civilian medical practice. In 1974, Paul served as a delegate to the Texas state republican convention. He unsuccessfully ran for Congress that same year, was elected two years later, then defeated, then elected again. He then went on to earn two further terms.
After an unsuccessful bid for the U.S. Senate, Paul retired from politics in 1985. He was succeeded in his congressional seat by Tom DeLay. Paul returned to his medical practice, only to win the nomination of the Libertarian party for President. He garnered .5% of the vote that year, coming in third after George Bush and Michael Dukakis. He did not run for office again until 1996, when he was elected to Congress in a different district. He has been easily re-elected in the four races since then, despite some grumblings from his fellow Republicans.
Ron Paul supports small government on all issues: He’s anti-death penalty, anti-drug laws, anti-police state, anti-Patriot Act and even anti-United Nations. He’s pro-life, but doesn’t believe the government should be involved in such issues as abortion, marriage, or health care. That means he voted against the Federal Marriage Amendment, too (though he has voted for a law that banned gay couples from adopting children). Paul gets 90% of his campaign contributions from individuals, with the average contribution being less than $50.
He has recently said he fears a “Gulf-of-Tonkin-like” event will be orchestrated by the Bush administration to justify war with Iran.
Posted by Eli’s Intern: Sage Van Wing
Previously: John Edwards, John McCain, Bill Richardson, Mitt Romney, Hillary Clinton, Rudy Giuliani, Barack Obama, Sam Brownback, Christopher J. Dodd, Newt Gingrich, Dennis Kucinich, Mike Huckabee, Tom Vilsack, Joe Biden, Duncan Hunter, and Tommy Thompson.