Ron Paul Is Trying To Steal The GOP Nomination
May 2, 2012 99 Comments
The Ron Paul supporters, known affectionately around here as Ronulans, are an interesting bunch. You’ll never meet people more committed to a candidate or case, you’ll also never meet people more delusional about their chances of winning. It is true Paul was able to fill a lot of college gyms for campaign events and it’s true that Paul’s passionate supporters will turn out in droves for every single internet poll. But that doesn’t translate into actual votes, something Paul’s largely young following doesn’t seem to understand. Unable to get more than 15% of the Republican vote, now the Ronulans believes he can out maneuver everyone and win the delegate count at the GOP Convention. It is the height of lunacy.
Ron Paul isn’t going to be able to pull off a stunning delegate victory, no matter how much his supports fantasize about it. Mitt Romney is the nominee. While a good 60% of the party didn’t vote for him, 90% or more are prepared to vote for him in the November election. Moreover 90% of the party views him as the legitimate GOP nominee. He won fair and square.That the Ronulans want to pretend like there’s any shot at winning in Tampa is the height of absurdity. That they think Paul can win with an underhanded and illegitimate stealth delegate campaign shows where these people are coming from.
Let’s go into Ronulan fantasy land and pretend that Paul pulls off the stealth delegate maneuver and walks out of Tampa with the nomination. He will not be viewed as the legitimate GOP nominee. It won’t just be the establishment that views matters this way, the rank and file will as well. None of Romney’s primary voters will vote for Paul, ensuring his absolute defeat to Obama. A good portion of non-Romney primary voters will also be turned off by Paul’s underhanded steal of the nomination. At this point a Ron Paul stealth victory ensures that Obama is re-elected. Romney has at least a 33% chance of winning, Paul has a 0% chance.
A Paul stealth victory would be a disaster for the conservative cause. Right now conservatives are in the middle of the GOP, with the establishment to their left and the libertarians to their right. The establishment and the libertarians tend to balance one another, particularly when it comes to Congressional and other local campaigns and issues such as the GOP platform. If Paul pulls off the stealth win, the balance of power in the GOP will be fundamentally and forever altered. The establishment will purge the libertarians from the GOP, this shifting the balance of power left. Make no mistake this will happen. The end result is bad for conservatives and it’s bad for libertarians as well. Whether the libertarians want to admit it or not, their only hope of advancing their cause is in the GOP. Simply put, the overwhelming majority of the country will not vote for the libertarians should they be relegated exclusively to meaningless third parties.
Most of us aren’t particularly happy about Romney’s nomination. He’s a Massachusetts moderate, the worst kind of establishment Republican. Like it or not, he’s the nominee. He’s won most of the state primaries and caucuses. He earned his victory. Libertarians will do nothing for their cause by trying to create a convention battle. They’ll turn most Republicans, who at their base have a sense of fairness about them, against the libertarians. Nothing will bother the rank and file more than Ron Paul seemingly trying to cheat his way into the nomination. Such a move will reflect poorly not only on Paul but on libertarians as well. They will never be trusted again by the very people libertarians need to recruit if they should ever want to make a serious run at the Republican nomination in the future.