Draft Ron Paul movement

Congressman Ron Paul.

The Draft Ron Paul movement refers to any of several grassroots efforts to convince United States Congressman Ron Paul of Texas to run for particular office, often president of the United States, as in the 2008 and 2012 elections.


Early draft movements

Paul was originally drafted[dubious ] to run for Congress as a nonincumbent in elections in 1974, April 1976, and 1978.[citation needed] Democrat Robert Gammage, who lost to Paul in 1978 by some 300 votes, stated he had underestimated Paul's support, particularly among local mothers: "I had real difficulty down in Brazoria County, where he practiced, because he'd delivered half the babies in the county. There were only two obstetricians in the county, and the other one was his partner."[1]

After four terms in Congress, Paul was drafted in 1987 to run for U.S. president with the Libertarian Party.[2] On the ballot in 46 states and the District of Columbia in 1988,[3] Paul's campaign placed third in the popular vote with 432,179 votes (0.5%),[4] behind Republican winner George H. W. Bush and Democrat Michael Dukakis.[5]

In 1995-6, Paul was drafted[dubious ] to run for Congress again, with support from baseball pitcher, constituent, and friend Nolan Ryan (as honorary campaign chair and ad spokesman), as well as tax activist Steve Forbes[6] and conservative commentator Pat Buchanan (both of whom had run presidential campaigns that year).[citation needed] Paul went on to win the election in a close margin. It became the third time Paul had been elected to Congress as a nonincumbent.[6]

2001 draft movement

An online grassroots petition to draft Paul for the 2004 presidential election, circulated by Independent Citizens and Parties for Congressman Ron Paul for President 2004, garnered several thousand signatures,[7] including appeals to petition Paul made by Murray Sabrin,[8] Dennis P. Slatton of the United America Party–North Carolina, and Constitution Party candidate Mark Dankof.[9] He was also endorsed by Chuck Baldwin[10] and LewRockwell.com economist David R. Henderson,[11] and the movement cited endorsements from the Independent American Party of Minnesota, the Constitution Party of New York, and the Constitution Party of Ohio.[12] On December 11, 2001, Paul told the independent movement that he was encouraged by the fact that the petition had spread the message of Constitutionalism, but did not expect a White House win at that time.[13] Nevertheless, the movement continued through the election cycle and was cited by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee for supporting Paul's dissent from George W. Bush's foreign policy.[14]

2008 elections

Further prompting in 2006-07 led Paul to enter the 2008 presidential race, officially declaring his candidacy on March 12, 2007, after much convincing by a congressional campaign aide, Kent Snyder, as well as a small grassroots effort. Simultaneous Libertarian Party draft efforts were hampered by Paul's run as a Republican.[15] Those publicly calling for Paul to be drafted by the grassroots included political cartoonist Kevin Tuma.[16] After SuperTuesday 2008 and with John McCain the presumptive nominee, economist Edwin Vieira, Jr., called for the Constitutionalist movement to draft Paul for a third-party run for president.[17] Paul's 2008 campaign for the Republican nomination ran until June 12, 2008;[18] declining a third-party run, Paul eventually endorsed Constitution Party candidate Chuck Baldwin for president.

2012 elections

Interelection efforts

The Rally for the Republic, held on September 2, 2008.

Since his run for president in 2008, Paul has become the subject of a significant political following among voters disillusioned by the current political system[citation needed].

In September 2008, Paul also hosted and participated in an event in Minneapolis—St. Paul, Minnesota that coincided with the nearby 2008 Republican National Convention, titled the Rally for the Republic, to protest the Republican convention's refusal to let Paul speak. The rally drew over 10,000 of his presidential campaign supporters, and hosted several speakers, including former Governors Jesse Ventura and Gary Johnson, political commentator Tucker Carlson, Barry Goldwater, Jr., and music artist Aimee Allen.[19]

2010 CPAC Straw Poll

Ron Paul speaking at the 2010 CPAC.

Paul won the 2010 CPAC straw poll with the largest percentage ever by any candidate[citation needed], placing well ahead of other speculated candidates, including Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin and Tim Pawlenty.[citation needed]

Heavily speculated as a possible Republican candidate in the 2012 presidential election, Paul again appeared on the 2010 CPAC Straw Poll. With his organization, Campaign for Liberty, forming a grassroots effort to "take over" the conference by sending as many supporters as possible to the Conservative Political Action Conference, Paul easily won the straw poll.[20] Paul defeated Mitt Romney, who had won the straw poll the previous three years.[20]

2011 Straw Polls

Paul won the major 2011 CPAC Straw Poll on February 12, 2011 with 30 percent of the vote. Following that, Ron Paul won the paid, online Arizona Tea Party Patriots straw poll on February 28, 2011 with 49% of the vote.[21]

Liberty PAC

Ron Paul in February 2011 asked supporters to donate to his Liberty PAC, to fund trips to Iowa and elsewhere to explore a possible 2012 presidential candidacy. On February 21, a Presidents' Day money bomb raised around $400,000 in 24 hours. Liberty PAC has raised more than $700,000 overall since its February relaunch.[22]

See also


  1. ^ Goodwyn, Wade (2007-10-07). "Paul Has Long Drawn Support from Unlikely Places". the '08 Candidates' First Campaign (National Public Radio). http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=15016924. Retrieved 2007-10-23. 
  2. ^ Toth, John (February 17, 1987), "Ron Paul seeks to be Libertarian Party presidential nominee", Houston Chronicle (Houston, Texas): 11, http://www.chron.com/CDA/archives/archive.mpl?id=1987_442777 
  3. ^ Rosenthal, Andrew (1988-10-17). "Now for a Real Underdog: Ron Paul, Libertarian, for President". New York Times. http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=FB0712FB3E5C0C748DDDA90994D0484D81. Retrieved 2008-03-21. 
  4. ^ Will, George F (2007-02-18). "A Cheerful Anachronism". Newsweek. http://www.libertypost.org/cgi-bin/readart.cgi?ArtNum=177422&Disp=41&Trace=on. Retrieved 2008-03-17. 
  5. ^ "1988 VOTE: The Final Word". New York Times. 1988-12-29. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=940DEEDB103AF93AA15751C1A96E948260&n=Top%2fReference%2fTimes%20Topics%2fPeople%2fP%2fPaul%2c%20Ron. Retrieved 2008-03-21. 
  6. ^ a b Caldwell, Christopher (2007-07-22). "The Antiwar, Anti-Abortion, Anti-Drug-Enforcement-Administration, Anti-Medicare Candidacy of Dr. Ron Paul". New York Times Magazine. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/22/magazine/22Paul-t.html?ei=5124&en=22ee37525a9fc4f5&ex=1343016000&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink&pagewanted=all. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  7. ^ Allan, Sterling D. "Ron Paul for President 2004". Petition Online. http://www.google.com/search?q=cache:kzoMbojcmoAJ:www.petitiononline.com/mod_perl/signed.cgi%3FPaul2004. 
  8. ^ Sabrin, Murray (2003-03-25). "Ron Paul for President". USA Daily. Archived from the original on 2003-08-11. http://web.archive.org/web/20030811215001/http://www.usadaily.com/Commentary/Sabrin/030325_ron_paul_for_president.htm. Retrieved 2011-02-02. 
  9. ^ "DRAFT Ron Paul for United States President 2004". Independent Citizens and Parties for Congressman Ron Paul for President 2004. 2004. Archived from the original on 2004-04-06. http://web.archive.org/web/20040406125315/http://paul2004.com/. Retrieved 2011-02-02. 
  10. ^ Baldwin, Chuck (2002-01-11). "Ron Paul for President in 2004?". Chuck Baldwin Live (Covenant News). http://covenantnews.com/baldwin020111.htm. Retrieved 2011-02-02. 
  11. ^ Henderson, David R. (2003-05-22). "A Modest Proposal: Ron Paul for President". LewRockwell.com. http://lewrockwell.com/orig2/henderson2.html. Retrieved 2011-02-02. 
  12. ^ "Organizations Officially Endorsing "Ron Paul for President 2004"". Independent Citizens and Parties for Congressman Ron Paul for President 2004. 2003-08-22. Archived from the original on 2003-10-08. http://web.archive.org/web/20031008075405/http://paul2004.com/SupportingOrganizations/index.html. Retrieved 2011-02-02. 
  13. ^ Allan, Sterling D. (2001-12-11). "Ron Paul's Response to "Ron Paul for President 2004" Petition". Draft Ron Paul for United States President 2004. Archived from the original on 2004-07-22. http://web.archive.org/web/20040722093715/http://www.paul2004.com/RonsResponse/index.html. Retrieved 2008-03-21. 
  14. ^ Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (2004-04-16). "Draft Ron Paul!". dccc.org. http://dccc.org/blog/entry/draft_ron_paul/. Retrieved 2011-02-02. 
  15. ^ Whitaker, Richard (2008-10-10). "The Libertarians: Democrats and Libertarians find common ground in their grudge against Republicans". The Austin Chronicle. http://www.austinchronicle.com/news/2008-10-10/686253/. Retrieved 2011-02-04. 
  16. ^ Tuma, Kevin (2007). "Why the Libertarians Must Draft Ron Paul". Christian Butterbach. http://www.butterbach.net/kev/kev6.htm. Retrieved 2011-02-02. 
  17. ^ Vieira, Jr., Edwin (2008-02-13). To the Point (NewsWithViews.com). http://edwinvieira.com/edwin75.htm. Retrieved 2011-02-02. 
  18. ^ Wolf, Z. Byron (2008-03-04). "Revolution Revived! Ron Paul Survives Challenge". ABC News. http://www.abcnews.go.com/Politics/Vote2008/story?id=4389616&page=1. Retrieved 2008-03-10. 
  19. ^ Suzanne Gamboa (2008-08-29). "Ron Paul followers gathering for own convention". Associated Press. http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5hx2FpPC_FhKjPbaHrFdnNHtq0uZAD92SSP700. 
  20. ^ a b "Rep. Ron Paul surprise winner of CPAC presidential straw poll". CNN. 2010-02-21. http://www.cnn.com/2010/POLITICS/02/20/conservatives.meeting/index.html. Retrieved 2010-03-06. 
  21. ^ "Ron Paul and Herman Cain lead the pack in Tea Party Patriots straw poll". CBS News. 2011-02-28. http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-20037196-503544.html. Retrieved 2011-03-03. 
  22. ^ "Dr. Paul Thanks Grassroots for President’s Day Money Bomb". Press Release. 2011-02-22. http://www.libertypac.com/2011/02/23/dr-paul-thanks-grassroots-for-president%E2%80%99s-day-money-bomb/. Retrieved 2011-03-03. 

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