I do not flatter myself enough to believe that Gov. Romney reads this blog (although he ought to!) but his people better ponder this posting and heed it. Or else not even Rep. Paul Ryan (who I am glad to see on the ticket!) can save it: What to do with the Paul delegates? Or the millions they represent. And the wrong answer will doom the election before it starts. For if President Obama wins this time, I might have to apply to be the Olympic Committee Vice Chairman for Botswana!
If it looks like that Romney is trying to silence the Paul delegates, or shut them out as is reported in Maine, or was done in Louisiana and maybe other states, there will be as Paul puts it: Blowback. They will walk out or otherwise disrupt the convention. And that could be fatal. The GOP does not have the luxury of having the last word. The Democrats will have a media-repeated and endorsed propaganda orgy in Charlotte and it FOLLOWS the GOP one!
So what to do? Three things:
Have a great prime-time debate on the issues important to the Paul supporters: NDAA, liberty and national security, the Fed, legalizing drugs at the federal level, non-intervention, and what cuts to make in spending and entitlements. Have Romney and Paul select solid speakers to cover these issues. The media may well cover it because it will be a solid, wonky debate worthy of our new VP choice.
Let Paul’s name be placed in nomination. Have him make the 15 min speech and reward the supporters with a demonstration. It’ll be great theater. It should make it easier for Gov. Romney to be a gracious winner. Mitt knows Ron Paul is not about to endorse him. But he’s not there to do that. He’s there to place his credo into the mainstream of American politics. Millions voted for Ron Paul’s vision.
Finally, Romney should publicly ask state parties not to tamper with rightly won delegates wherever they might be. The Paul side already is suspicious of Romney’s intentions. Let’s not put gasoline on the fire.
Some might say: Screw ‘em! We won and their ideas are dangerous. But if the Paul delegates walk out, it will disrupt the convention, destroy unity, be a horrible media show that will be played again and again. And they (and the millions they represent) have places to go: The LP, with former NM Governor Gary Johnson as their standard-bearer or the Constitution Party, with former VA Congressman Virgil Goode as its Presidential candidate. Both are unusually solid candidates for a third party. (Some might write-in Paul!) Many Paul followers believe there is not a dime’s difference between Romney and Obama. I do not believe that but I understand their frustration. It might only take two or three percent in battleground states to tilt it to the President and he wins again. To place liberals on the Supreme Court. To implement Obamacare. To give up more of our sovereignty to the UN. To raise taxes on small businesses. To apologize to more nations (other than Serbia who ought to be apologized to for our attack on them for no reason!) and to embolden our enemies and discourage our friends like Israel.
So, Governor Romney, I plead with you: Do not disrespect the Paul forces within or without the convention. We cannot afford to lose this time. Or I might have to see if Estonia needs a curling coach…or Botswana an appellate defender!
UPDATE: NBC news is reporting that former Fifth District Congressman Virgil H. Goode is drawing 9% in one Virginia poll!
VIRGINIA: Not so Goode for Romney… “Goode is running for president on the Constitution Party ticket, and his candidacy has Republicans sweating: Goode is pulling fully 9% of Virginia’s vote, according to a mid-July Public Policy Polling survey, leaving Obama ahead of Romney 49% to 35%,”
It is critical for Romney to treat Paul and his people right. Or, how does that Swiss national anthem go…