Wednesday, March 14, 2012


We've heard for a while that Ron Paul is in cahoots with Mitt Romney, but now Time's Alex Altman claims to have an idea of what's about to transpire:

...Paul's campaign has sent discreet signals to Camp Romney that the keys to Paul's shop can be had for the right price.

... four legislative priorities would top the Texas Representative's wish list: deep spending cuts that lead to a balanced budget; the restoration of civil liberties; a commitment to reclaim the legislative branch's right to declare war, which it abdicated to the executive branch in recent decades; and reforms that shore up the U.S. monetary system, such an audit of the Federal Reserve or competing-currency legislation. The Texas Representative might also be enticed, says campaign chairman Jesse Benton, by the prospect of serving as a presidential adviser, a Cabinet position for someone in his orbit or "perhaps a vice presidency."

Not for himself, but rather his son. Rand Paul, the junior senator from Kentucky and a Tea Party icon, is expected to launch his own White House bid in 2016. Being on the ticket now -- or even being mentioned for it -- would be a helpful step. Says one Paul adviser: "If you're talking about putting Rand on the ticket, of course that would be worth delivering our people to Romney." ...

The reason I'm having trouble imagining this happening, or at least imagining it working if it does happen, is that, yes, Romney wants Paul's voters, but the aspects of Paul's platform that most appeal to the Paulbots are precisely the ones Romney either won't accept or can't endorse with any credibility.

Oh, sure, Romney can promise to cut gazillions of dollars from the budget -- he's going to say that anyway. He can promise to audit the Fed -- he might promise that no matter what. But the Paulbots care mostly about anti-interventionism and legal dope -- and there's no way in hell I can imagine Romney signing on to either of those. In which case Paul can talk Romney up all he wants, but the Paulbots won't follow. In fact, Paul himself will lose credibility with them.

And, um, is the younger Paul really "a Tea Party icon"? He ran as a teabagger in 2010, but he's not a pulse-quickening guy in that movement the way, say, Sarah Palin is, or even Scott Walker. (Maybe that's because we liberals don't hate him enough -- that always helps if you want to be a teabagger hero.)

But everything gets murky here. The article suggests that the voting bloc Ron Paul can deliver is the tea party, but Ron Paul's fans aren't teabaggers at all -- they want war against Muslims and social conservatism on the domestic front. So either Time's reporter is confused or Romney's people are -- or maybe the Paul people, who are clearly the major sources for this story, are claiming a level of clout they don't have. In any case, don't expect this to be Romney's magic bullet, if it happens at all.

(X-posted at Booman Tribune.)


Danp said...

The mere fact that people are speculating about cooperation between Paul and Romney is killing Paul's campaign. He's supposed to be a giant killer, not a parasite.

Ten Bears said...

Let's see, throwing Paul's delegates to Romney effectively throws the election to Obama. Why, as with ought-eight, are the Republics throwing the election?

Steve M. said...

Romney's within shouting distance of Obama in just abnout every poll, except the ones that show him beating Obama. Just because we think Romney is pathetic doesn't mean the country does.