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Young Americans for Freedom, the conservative student organization organized at the Sharon, CT home of conservative icon William F. Buckley, Jr., has decided to remove Cong. Ron Paul off its advisory board, Politico reports:

The Young Americans for Freedom has voted the Texas congressman off its national advisory board in the aftermath of his straw poll win at CPAC over his positions on national security issues.

“It’s a sad day in American history when a one-time conservative/libertarian stalwart has fallen more out of touch with America’s needs for national security then our current socialist presidential regime,” said the group’s national director Jordan Marks.

Marks actually was disrespectful to Cong. Paul saying that he is “off his meds” and “…he won’t be missed.”

What do I say to this?

YAF is personal.  I was once a member of YAF at Wright State; was its founding vice-chair and ascended to the chairmanship when my chair decided to support Teddy Kennedy for President in 1980 (That’s another story!) and was on the Ohio state board of YAF.  When I was vice chair of WSU YAF, we were asked to sponsor (I think we shared it with the University of Dayton and Sinclair Community College YAF) the regional YAF convention.  The chair and I got all the resolutions passed, had a great speaker (the Lithuanian sailor Simas Kudirka who had in 1970 been handed back to his ship when he tried to defect from the USSR), had a wonderful time meeting conservatives from throughout the Midwest, and met the spirited Badger Herald editor, Robert E. A. P. Ritholz, and his UW Madison delegation.  (I was a subscriber to the BH at the time and got the paper for several years in the mail.)  Ritholz wrote the famous comment in the BH on the death of Mao Tse-Tung:  Top Commie Bites Dust.

Even before I went to college I would read the YAF magazine, The New Guard, on the sly at every chance (I also read National Review and sometimes Human Events, too!) and I was excited to be a part of YAF while an undergraduate.

I cannot believe YAF has done this thing.  Criticized Ron Paul in such terms.  Here are some of the awful things they said on their website:

YAF’s concern with Rep. Paul stems from his delusional and disturbing alliance with the fringe Anti-War movement.

“It is a sad day in American history when a one-time conservative-libertarian stalwart has fallen more out of touch with America’s needs for national security than the current feeble and appeasing administration,” said YAF’s Senior National Director Jordan Marks.

And this:

“Rep. Paul has strayed to the left of Obama and allied himself with the radical anti-war left by laying the blame on America for the unprovoked attacks of Sept. 11th. Additionally, Rep. Paul has not condemned the 9/11 “Truther” conspiracy theorists that support him, and he has repeatedly insisted, that the United States not bring justice to those who have murdered thousands of our civilians and soldiers at home and abroad. This is simply unacceptable. Clearly Rep. Paul cares more about a doomed presidential run than he does our country,” Marks added.

And this offensive comment:

“Rep. Paul’s refusal to support our nation’s military and national security interests border on treason,…”

Treason?  Ron Paul a traitor?  I can hardly believe this at all.  Cong. Paul is a consistent supporter of the Constitution, US sovereignty and both personal and economic liberties.  Because he supports non-intervention and states the obvious – there can be blowback from bad US policies – the YAF wants to condemn him like this?  Why now?  Perhaps YAF decided Paul has a chance to win and they want to pick the scab off an old wound to hurt his chances. Whatever the reason is, YAF has gone over the edge.

Besides, YAF is wrong.  Paul supported the giving of authority to the President to attack Afghanistan.  He also supported a new Constitutional weapon to go after Osama bin Laden – the letter of marque and reprisal.  He has also asked his so-called “Truther” supporters to stop linking both him and their beliefs together in a debate during the last campaign.

Well, I stand with Ron Paul.  I urge YAF members and leaders to defect and join the Young Americans for Liberty (YAL) in protest.  Unlike my former chairman, who left YAF to work for a liberal Democrat, it is YAF that left me.  I also call on YAF to apologize to Cong. Paul.

About Elwood Sanders

Elwood "Sandy" Sanders is a Hanover attorney who is an Appellate Procedure Consultant for Lantagne Legal Printing and has written ten scholarly legal articles. Sandy was also Virginia's first Appellate Defender and also helped bring curling in VA! (None of these titles imply any endorsement of Sanders’ views)


  1. JKR says:

    Since Ron Paul’s foreign policy views haven’t changed in 30 years, and since YAF has previously given him their highest award while yet holding those views, obviously foreign policy isn’t what twisted their knickers.

    This is (the speaker is the president of YAF at CPAC 2010. He is booed early because he has just been booing a guy from Students for Liberty who commended CPAC for inviting GOProud. YAL is Young Americans for Liberty, once Students for Ron Paul.):

    • So this is what YAF has come to? I am glad to be out. YAF was once libertarian – so much so that the Ohio state board voted down my proposal to support mandatory returnable deposits on the ballot in 1979. (I got my YAF chapter to endorse the referendum but it failed!) I suspect most rank and file YAFFers will not go along with this stuff.

      Sandy Sanders

  2. Nick says:

    Clearly YAF is composed of idiots if they still don’t realize 9-11 was an inside job.

  3. Richard Cheatham says:


    I am with you. I was a Virginia State Chairman for YAF during my college years. I graduated from VMI. I thought the recent YAF dismissal of Congressman Paul was not only unwise, it was offensive. If this is what YAF has become, I have no further use for it. The original YAF was actually composed of young Americans for…FREEDOM. The present leadership of YAF has demonstrated ignorance of that basic concept and a juvenile emotionalism that is unworthy of YAF’s original heritage. Thank you for your comments.

    Best wishes,

    Richard Cheatham


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Tom White Says:

Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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