This Is Ron Paul’s Moment
Ron Paul rides again
The Texas congressman has travelled a lonely path in politics. But now he has a promising platform for another presidential run
The Revolution is here! Searching for leadership, congressional Republicans have finally turned to Ron Paul. Well, to chair the House subcommittee on domestic monetary policy, at least. But that does put Congress’s leading critic of the Federal Reserve in charge of the panel that oversees the central bank.
Ben Bernanke, beware. The 12-term libertarian-leaning congressman from Texas has written a book-length manifesto – titled simply End the Fed – calling for the Federal Reserve’s abolition. He will likely call leading Austrian economists affiliated with the Ludwig von Mises Institute to Capitol Hill to testify alongside staid mainstream economists. Fortune magazine recently asked, “Will the Fed be able to survive Ron Paul?”
For years, Paul laboured in obscurity. He ended his first stint in Congress with an unsuccessful run for US Senate in 1984 (he lost to eventual Senator Phil Gramm in the Republican primary). Before returning to the House 13 years later, in order to join the stalled government-shrinking “Republican Revolution”, Paul was the Libertarian party’s presidential nominee in 1988.
But it was Paul’s first Republican presidential campaign in 2008 that really put him on the map. Debating alongside John McCain, Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney, Paul stood out as a voice for peace and civil liberties. Unlike all the other Republicans on stage, he opposed the Iraq war and the Patriot Act. A strict constitutionalist, he was also more consistent than the rest of them in his rejection of debts, deficits and runaway government spending.