Ha! Looks like Ron Paul has raised his profile considerably. As before, here – pending the official transcript – are my summaries of Paul’s answers in tonight’s GOP debate. Once again, these are paraphrases, not direct quotes:
1. You voted against the war initially and now want to withdraw; 70% of Republicans disagree with you. Are you running for the nomination of the wrong party? Answer: the Republican base has shrunk thanks to the war, so that 70% represents a smaller group of people. The important 70% is the 70% of the American people who oppose the war. In 2002 I introduced a resolution to vote yes or no on a declaration of war and Congress wouldn’t do it. I opposed the initial war because I knew it would be a quagmire. When Reagan sent the Marines into Lebanon he said he wouldn’t be intimidated into leaving but a few months ago, after the terrorist attacks, he did pull them out,. In his memoirs he explained that he’d changed his mind and come to realise he’d underestimated the irrationality of Middle East politics; we need the courage of a Ronald Reagan.
2. Name three programs you would eliminate? Answer: All these departments – Education, Energy, Homeland Security. The Republicans put in Homeland Security, a monstrous bureaucracy as inefficient as FEMA. But in order to cut taxes we have to change our philosophy about what government should do. We can’t cut taxes effectively so long as we still want to spend trillions of dollars on a massive welfare state, on policing the world, etc. Follow-up: You’d abolish the Department of Homeland Security in the middle of a war? Answer: We were already spending billions of dollars on homeland security prior to 9/11 and it didn’t prevent the attacks; inefficiency was the problem. Adding another huge, expensive, inefficient level of bureaucracy makes things worse.
3. You’re the only one on this stage who opposes the war. Are you out of step with your party, and why are you seeking its nomination? Answer: The Republican Party has lost its way. The conservative wing was always anti-interventionist: Taft was against NATO; Bush ran on a promise of a humble foreign policy, anti-nation-building, anti-global-policing; Republicans were elected to end the Korean and Vietnam wars; it’s the Constitutional position; the founders’ advice was to pursue friendship with other nations but avoid entangling alliances. We should negotiate, talk, trade with other countries; we lost 60,000 soldiers in Vietnam and lost the war, and now we invest there. We shouldn’t go to war so carelessly. Follow-up: Is noninterventionism still a viable position after 9/11? Answer: 9/11 was a response to our previous interventions. We’d been bombing Iraq for a decade; we’re now building 14 permanent bases there and an embassy bigger than the Vatican. If China were doing this in the Gulf of Mexico we’d be upset. Follow-up: Are you suggesting we invited the 9/11 attacks? Answer: I suggest we believe their reasons are what they say they are; also bin Laden says he’s delighted our soldiers are over there where they can be targeted more easily. Giuliani intervenes: As NYC mayor during 9/11, I’ve never before heard such a shocking claim that we invited 9/11 and I ask Ron Paul to withdraw it or clarify whether he believes it. Paul’s reply: I believe the CIA is correct when it warns us about blowback. We overthrew the Iranian government in 1953 and their taking the hostages was the reaction. This dynamic persists and we ignore it at our risk. They’re not attacking us because we’re rich and free, they’re attacking us because we’re over there. (Later on Tancredo also attacked Paul, saying that regardless of what our foreign policy was or whether Isarel existed, the terrorirsts would still attack us because they view it as a religious imperative. Paul did not have a chance to respond.)
4. President Bush says his tax cuts helped the economy stay strong after 9/11; in such-and-such a hypothetical terrorist scenario, would you do likewise? Answer: It’s definitely good to cut taxes, but we also need to cut spending because deficits are harmful. As for all this talk about torture as “enhanced interrogation,” it sounds like Newspeak. The President already has the authority to deal with terrorist attacks. In the wake of 9/11 we gave the President authority top go into Afghanistan; now bin Laden is sitting in Pakistan, our supposed ally, and we’re in Iraq instead. I don’t know why we’re discussing a hypothetical crisis instead of the actual one.
References to Paul in candidate interviews by Hannity & Colmes after the debate:
Warmonger Giuliani: Paul’s comment reminded me of the Saudi prince who accused us of inviting 9/11, and I returned his contribution. They’re not attacking us because of our foreign policy, they’re attacking us because of our freedom of religion and freedom for women; the recent Fort Dix incident proves it. I never expected to hear this from a Republican. If you’re confused about this, if you can’t face reality, you can’t lead.
Warmonger McCain: I thought Giuliani’s intercession against Paul was appropriate and excellent; we should never believe we brought on this conflict.
In the interests of timeliness I’m posting this now, while coverage is still running. If there are more references to Paul, or if Paul himself gets interviewed, I’ll post the info in the comments section.
Update 1: One pundit said Paul torpedoed his campaign via his exchange with Giuliani. But another pundit said Paul is now the one all the reporters are interested in. Hannity said he was surprised (I wasn’t) that Paul won the first text-message poll, at 30%; another pundit said Paul must have done a good job of organising his supporters (these guys just don’t get it libertarians are self-organising!) Lots of people making little anti-Paul jabs; that’s a good thing in my book, it gives Paul visibility.
Hannity keeps saying they’re going to interview all the candidates tonight; I’m waiting to see if Paul gets on.
One interesting question: will the attention Paul got tonight win him an appearance on The Daily Show?
Typical of the MSM and their loaded questions to Dr. Paul…still, I think the exchange with Giuliani was good…dr. Paul did not take back his comment and rightfully so; rather he tried to explain the concept of “blowback” which the other candidates did not understand-nor did they address, and rightfully so, we do face consequences for our foreign policy decisions and 911 was most certainly directly related to the foreign policy of 20 plus years of meddling in the middle east and doing so in a biased manner.
Sadly, it seems some Americans do not understand the concept of blowback and how one action will create an equally opposing and sometimes greater reaction…as has our foreign policy in the middle east…
Update 2: After 20,000 votes Paul is still the front runner in the text-message poll (send R7 to 36988), though hes fallen from 30% to 29%.
Warmonger Duncan Hunter also took a jab at Paul, saying we go into the Middle East to save Muslim countries and our reward is to get attacked.
Which poll are you talking about? I can’t seem to find one on fox that even lists Ron.
FOX and MSNBC…also there is a wiki that lists all the polls but those are the best two.
On MSNBC be sure to push the sliders DOWN for all the others.
ronpaulpresshub.com slash wiki slash index dot php?title=Polls
Update 3: Ron Paul gets interviewed by Hannity and Colmes. Colmes: The biggest moment was the exchange between you and Giuliani. Paul: I would be delighted to debate Giuliani on foreign policy. Colmes: Why are you running as a Republican when your policies are so unpopular with your party, and if you dont win the nomination would you run as an independent? Paul: The majority of the country agrees with me on the war. I want to be the president of the country, not of the party; the GOP lost the last election on the issue of the war and needs to change. I have no plans to run as an independent. Colmes: Youre pro-life yet most libertarians are pro-choice. Where does the Constitution give the government the right to restrict abortion? Given your views shouldnt you want government out of the question entirely. Paul: Under the Constitution the federal government has no place in the abortion issue and should leave it to the states. Its the statess responsibility to protect life; if you dont protect life how can you protect liberty? As a libertarian I see abortion as a violation of the prohibition on agfgression.
Hannity: Are you suggesting that we caused 9/11? Paul: No, thats a copout, to suggest Im anti-American because I disagree with your foreign policy. U. S. policies contributed significantly to 9/11. Thats what the CIA tells us Hannity: Which policies, how? Paul: Policies like our military occupation of Saudi Arabia, or our killing tens of thousands of people in a Muslim country via bombing and killing, cause hatred. Hannity: So the world has no obligation to intervene to stop horrors? We should just stand by? Paul: We have on numerous occasions. Colmes: Reagan stood by while the Kurds were gassed. Paul: We didnt intervene against Moscow or Pol Pot. Would you have the courtesy to ask Congress to declare war? Hannity: Congresss authorisation vote was a declaration of war.
It then trailed off into Hannity shouting Paul down.
I found the one on MSNBC, but the foxnews one still is a mystery to me.
To be clear, I found the poll, I just can’t find the results.
Update 4: Paul has slipped to second place but is still holding strong at 27%. This forced Hannity to downplay the importance of text-message polls which is fair enough, except that it was Hannity who kept urging us to participate in the poll in the first place.
Colmes asked some talking head from GOPAC (whod dismissed Paul as an unserious candidate whod hurt himself in tonights debate) to explain Pauls success. The GOPAC head said he could only go by his own personal reaction.
The Fox poll is a text-message poll, not an online poll; see the info above. The poll results were on Hannity & Colmes.
Ron Paul is more conservative than those other candidates could dream of. Do your home work. Most intellectual conservatives were against this war before it started in 2003. Did you know that? Pat Buchanan is against this war, Charley Reese, conservative columnist, [War with Iraq] “is a prescription for the decline and fall of the American empire. Overextension – urged on by a bunch of rabid intellectuals who wouldn’t know one end of a gun from another” Paul Craig Roberts, who was one of the highest-ranking Treasury Department officials under President Reagan and now a nationally-syndicated conservative columnist, wrote: “an invasion of Iraq is likely the most thoughtless action in modern history.” On and on and these quotes are from 2002! This war was Undeclared, un-provoked, liberal “nation building” I know it is hard, but we, as conservatives, have got to do some deep thinking about this issue and wake up! Share this article with people: http://www.antiwar.com/orig/duncan1.html
Ron wins again. There is no such thing as the ‘libertarian left’. If you are left, you ain’t no libertarian..
Aaron: Ron Paul is more conservative than those other candidates could dream of. Do your home work.
Is that addressed to me? If so, to what specifically is it a response? I said nothing in the above post about Paul’s being or not being a conservative.
NH: There is no such thing as the ‘libertarian left’. If you are left, you ain’t no libertarian..
So, please explain to me in what respect I fall short of being a libertarian.
I think that Aaron may have been directing that to Colmes, perhaps?
The fact is, Ron Paul was right and anyone who says he wasn’t is completely wrong. The 9/11 Commission Report spoke about this, and Osama himself said it in his 1996 fatwa against the US.
The CIA’s former official in charge of investigating bin Laden testified to the 9/11 Committee that 9/11 happened because of American’s Middle Eastern policies.
Giuliani has lost any respect I had for him before. I would never vote for him after this. McCain keeps getting worse and worse with his warmongering.
Fox poll here: http://tinyurl.com/2bltzb
Rod, I don’t think that guy fully understands what “libertarian left” means. I’ve had similar comments to me about being libertarian and “liberal”. Not that they fully understand what the word “liberal” actually means…
On The View yesterday morning, Joy (one of the hosts) said that Ron Paul was
a Republican she could vote for and that he was right on the money
about US foreign policy. She and Rosie also seemed to think that
Giuliani intentionally misinterpreted Paul’s remarks in order to
grandstand. Joy also mentioned that Ron Paul won a Fox News poll after
the debates. Naturally, the resident neocon on The View, Elizabeth,
made the usual obligatory objections: what is his plan to protect us?
they’re irrational terrorists! blah blah blah.
Did you see who they caught in the Dix terror attempt? Albanians.
When Clinton was bombing the Serbs, Giuliani corralled a bunch of
Albanians to protest at midnight resurrection services outside of
the Manhattan Serb Cathedral. TO their credit, even the Albanians were reluctant. What you get is the politicians who won’t tow the Vatican line on one issue have to toe it even more on other issues to make up for it. Giuliani was tied into the muslims because Saladjic lived near Molinari. But McCain had the soldiers write “Happy Easter” on the bombs. THe Catholics love the muslims, because they vote like them and hate democracy, commerce and Jews.
This is why 9/11 was definitely Rudy’s Yugo Blow Back.
Maybe Guiliani organized these Albanians too, to keep the War on Terror facade going? LOL