CNN Debate Reveals: Romney / Paul 2012?
The Tag Team
This was the 20th debate thus far in the 2012 GOP primary. The rollercoaster that has been this primary season isn’t over as former Sen. Rick Santorum now holds a tenuous lead in national polls by 5.3% on average. But he is decidedly vulnerable considering 3 previous leaders have held leads higher than 10% and he polls behind Mitt Romney in both Arizona and Michigan.
While the debate itself was classic boredom punctuated by deft remarks by Gingrich, who no doubt has already packaged many of his quips years ago as Speaker, and by Ron Paul’s brutal honesty. CNN’s John King asked Ron Paul: “You have a new television ad that labels [Rick Santorum] a fake [fiscal conservative]. Why?” Ron Paul directly replied: “Because he is a fake!” a bomb which caused the debate crowd to thunder in laughter and applause.
There is something, however, even more interesting about Ron Paul’s ad lambasting Rick Santorum’s profligate spending habits as the Senator from Pennsylvania. Out of the gate Mitt Romney used the same argument, almost a carbon copy of Paul’s ad, to blast Rick Santorum over funding planned parenthood, doubling the size of the Department of Education (no doubt after No Child Left Behind) and raising the debt ceiling among other votes for big government.
While the debate delved into the regular minutia, namely Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney who spent 20 minutes quibbling over the philosophy and particulars of earmarks, which account for a mere sliver of government spending amidst a mountain of debt something very interesting came to light.
Ron Paul has always been characterized as the austere ideologue rarely honing his political tactics, however, considering the “Delegate Hunter” claims to be in 2nd place in the delegate race without having won a state yet (this idea backed up recently by the National Review and in John King’s post debate interview with Paul) one has to wonder if the other candidates are also taking notice. Mitt Romney may have.
About a week ago the New York Times reported that “Amid Rivalry, Friendship Blossoms on the Campaign Trail” between Paul and Romney. Evidently things are so friendly that when Ron Paul’s campaign jet broke down last year in New Hampshire Romney not only offered his jet but his summer home on Lake Winnipesaukee. Paul declined both offers.
Could it be that Mitt Romney, recently stunted in his quest for a majority of the 1,144 delegates now sees Dr. Paul as a potential ally? If you ask Rick Santorum, his staff and or Newt Gingrich after last night’s debate they all seem to think so. Santorum’s chief stategist, John Brabender, for instance claims: “Clearly there is a tag-team strategy between Ron Paul and Mitt Romney.”
Is it that Bizarre?
MSNBC’s host Joe Scarborough may think: “for all the people for Ron Paul to form an alliance with in the Republican Party, to pick out Mitt Romney is really bizarre.” But why? There are only 3 choices!
Newt Gingrich would more likely eat Ron Paul for lunch than implement any of his plans. His bellicosity alone in foreign policy would remain in stark contrast to Ron Paul’s plans for a more restrained diplomacy.
Rick Santorum’s emphasis on social issues is a non starter in Paul’s mind. Santorum has openly slighted the libertarian ideology and his rhetoric is the antithesis of Paul’s social libertarian ideals regardless of Santorum’s claim last night that while he advocates social reform he doesn’t necessarily advocate a government program to carry it out. His legislation and votes for government funding of abstinence education testify to his duplicity.
Romney, while remaining in stark contrast to Ron Paul is the most amenable, just ask Ann Coulter who has been backing Romney for months on this premise. The idea that with the right push Romney the weathervane may point in Ron Paul’s direction is potentially a good thing. The pulpit of vice president isn’t bad either. Who knows, maybe even Rand Paul might be able to wet his beak in a Romney administration with some help from dad.
In the end, take a look at the polls. Romney is almost as consistent as Paul while the rest of the GOP field have been flavors of the week. Moreover, Romney sorely lacks the enthusiasm of the Ron Paul campaign, but who’s to say if the Paulistas will come along for the ride? Maybe they should.
Ron Paul as Mitt Romney’s Thomas Jefferson
This idea of rivals in the White House is not without precedent, but the most interesting parallel would be the first instance it occurred, in the administration of John Adams and his vice president Thomas Jefferson. The two couldn’t be more dissimilar at the time, John Adams pro central government and Thomas Jefferson’s emphasis on state’s rights were sure to clash. Scott Ledd of Scuttledd.com wrote a wildly interesting article about “How Ron Paul CANNOT Lose in 2012.”
In the early Republic the vice president was determined by number of electoral votes. If you had the most you were declared president, if you were second you were vice president simple as that.
While presiding over the Senate Thomas Jefferson attempted to strengthen state’s rights with the help of James Madison in an effort to help states protect their citizens from unconstitutional federal laws, sound familiar? In 1798 it was the Alien and Sedition Acts, which gave the federal government power to detain and/or deport anyone including U.S. citizens for opposing the government. Today we call it the NDAA.
More importantly Ron Paul and Thomas Jefferson have opposed increased federal taxes and most of all private central banks manipulating the dollar. Thomas Jefferson’s successes in these areas lead to the “Revolution of 1800” where his efforts catapulted him into the presidency.
For those Paulistas, Joe Scarboroughs, and nay sayers who will no doubt be disgruntled for a perceived capitulation to globalists or banksters I leave you with this from Scott Ledd’s article:
“No doubt, there will be some who meet the scenario I have detailed herein with derision; who say that Ron Paul, in accepting a VP nomination, would have just sold out all that he has worked so hard and long to defeat. To these people I ask, was Thomas Jefferson a sell-out when he became Vice-President in 1796? Did he alter his views in any way to accept that position, or after taking office? No. As a matter of fact, he only strengthened and expanded upon them, magnifying them through the “bully pulpit” of his office. For Ron Paul, how would this be any different?”