The series is almost over, but I want to thank all of you Ron Paul supporters who have contributed constructive feedback to the discussion and I hope you can use the feedback to help inform and aid your cause.
I’ll be doing two more posts to wrap this whole series up. The first post will collect what I believe are the best answers to the 7 questions, while the second post will uncover some comments that didn’t directly answer any of my seven questions but are good thoughts nonetheless. Be on the look out for those soon.
Now…question 7, and the one that could change the face of American politics: Have you taken a look at Unity 08? Theyâ€™re offering any candidate who can get enough people behind them the ability to run on the Unity 08 ticket. What that means is Unity will make sure that the candidate will be on the ballot in all 50 states, so the candidate doesnâ€™t have to worry about it. Still think a 3rd party run doesnâ€™t make sense?
- Dary: Ron said that he wouldnâ€™t run as a third party candidate.
- Michael: A 3rd party does make sense. What makes more sense is to dissolve the â€œPartyâ€ lines and let people vote based on their message and not via party lines. The words Republican and Democrat have become â€œfoulâ€ language for so many. The reality is they are two halves of the SAME coin.
- Tony Lambiris: I absolutely think a third party not only makes sense, but I feel it is absolutely necessary. Two parties to represent a country as big as ours doesnâ€™t stack up anymore. We are more connected and aware at a global level, so to say that there are only two parties that blankets the majoritiesâ€™ interests is fâ€™d to me.
- coainley: No, I havenâ€™t. I voted third party last year, but Iâ€™d rather Ron Paul be on the ballot as a Republican. Iâ€™m going to vote for him no matter what.
- Tim: I have not, but thanks for the suggestion. Ultimately, Paul is the one weâ€™ll have to convince about running.
- Ward Ciac: Makes sense.
- Lex: Unity 08? I have looked into it. They are vastly overstating their organizational abilities and membership so far. Ron Paulâ€™s Meetup.com groups could take over Unity 08 in about a week, which might not be such a bad backup plan. Personally, I donâ€™t want to see a Ron Paul third party or independent run, unless the worst case scenario unfolds and it is Hillary vs. Rudy. I think he could win in that matchup. For now, Iâ€™m keeping the faith and doing everything in my power to help Ron Paul win the Republican nomination. I believe that can happen, if only because the Republican front-runners are so weak: the pro-choice, anti-Second Amendment Giuliani, the former lobbyist Thompson, the pro-surge, pro-amnesty McCain, and the Massachusetts flip-flopper Romney.
- Scott: That is amazing, however trully feel he is Republican! Lets look at this, extremly fiscally conservitive, check, lower (or axe) income tax, to expand personal choices, check, morally sound, check, non intervention foreign pol, and if you think that 9/11 changed all this, why have simply 20 â€œâ€”â€terroristsâ€”â€” crossed over the mexican-american border and blown themselves up? (check) â€¦ whats non republican about him?
- Corky: Dr. Paul is running for the Republican nomination and although itâ€™s an uphill battle, heâ€™s in it to win. Itâ€™s premature to discuss a third party slate.
- Doofus: Unity â€™08?
- John Campbell: Unity 08 works for centrists like Bloomberg, but I canâ€™t see it working Ron Paul. Heâ€™s better off running on the ticket of a party that matches his ideology. Besides, Iâ€™m counting on Bloomberg running as the U08 candidate. Assuming he doesnâ€™t get the Republican nomination, Ron Paul canâ€™t win a 3 way race. The best he could hope for is to promote the message and increase LP visibility. But I think he could possibly win a 5 way race with Bloomberg and Nader diluting the Liberal vote while Ron Paul builds a coalition of anti-war Dems, anti-War Repubs, Libs and Paleo-conservatives.
- Aaron: I donâ€™t think heâ€™ll do it. This campaign will exhaust him as it is and heâ€™s been down that road. Third party candidates face many institutional obstacles beyond ballot access. I wouldnâ€™t blame him if he said, â€œscrew it I did my bit for Liberty I met the people more than half way.â€ It comes down to this Justin. Paul is a unique messenger for liberty because he is so unassuming and matter of fact. His quiet Gandhi style approach is the only hope to rise above the din. You see how quickly those starving for this message rally behind him. Thank goodness we know this guy is trustworthyâ€“we could easily fall prey to some pied piper because we are so hungry and so desperate to see a serious treatment of liberty. This is why he is a unique opportunity which we must exhaust every amount of effort we can in getting him as far as we can get him. There is no final destination in this campaign and to consume oneself with the end is to distract oneself from the purpose.
- NH: Screw that! These are communist quislings who want to dilute the GOP message. They are pro-UN ACTORSâ€¦ Same Waterston? You must be kidding. UN lackeys. Iâ€™m shocked James Maynard would suggest Gravel, but then again you canâ€™t trust libertarians.
- Jonathan Bennett: Iâ€™m voting for Ron Paul no matter what â€œticketâ€ he is on.
- Buckwheat: 3rd party run not necessary, Paul is going to win the Republican nomination.
- Dan Warner: I donâ€™t think Ron Paul wants to be a â€™spoilerâ€™. I truly think he is in this to win. He is not just running for president, he is starting a true revival of the republican party, he is starting a â€˜revolutionâ€™ that will last far beyond any presidency could. I think this is more important than anything else. He has lit a fire under our collective butts and itâ€™s not going to go out if he looses. We will continue to â€˜vote the bums outâ€™ who donâ€™t represent us untill we finally have candidates who emulate his values.
- Corey Cagle: For reasons explained above, I have a sort of automatic reaction against any party called â€œUnity.â€ Maybe this is just knee-jerking, but I think itâ€™s clear that when liberals and conservatives unify, we get the worst, not the best, of both worlds. If Ron Paul doesnâ€™t win the Republican nomination, I hope the Libertarian Party will nominate him again.
- Jeanette Doney: Unity08 has named Ron Paul and Mike Gravel as their leading choices. Unity08 cannot make any promise on ballot access. How will they get on the Oklahoma ballot? How will they do better than Nader with Democrats employing attorneys to file bogus lawsuits to drain money from the campaign? The state of Pennsylvania has threatened to â€œfreeze Naderâ€™s bank account if he tried to run as an independent, even though the real reason Nader wants ballot access is that as a consumer advocate who wants to research election laws, being elections are bought, the federal elections Commission insists , to challenge an election or vote, one MUST be on the ballot. The GOP only threw gas on the Democratsâ€™ fire to burn Nader, and Media gave them the logs to keep it going forevermore. Unity08 does not have a chance in hell, anymore than Nader or Perot.
- meinaz: Unity08 will get as much media coverage as the Constitution or Reform parties (none). Itâ€™s a bad idea. Now, at least, the media is â€“begrudginglyâ€“ forced to acknowledge Paulâ€™s presence in the debates.
- Edward Keithly: Why would I go and do that? Weâ€™re going to win the GOP nomination for Dr. Ron Paul.
- Vicky: Third party run is unnecessary. Unity 08 has LAME writen all over it.
- Matt C: I read something about Unity 08 awhile back. I think Waterston vs. Fred Thompson would be a great matchup in the general election.
- Patrick: If the unity candidate is allowed in the debates. That might be nice. But Unity 08 has no real ideals. Theyâ€™ll probably take anybody. Sounds like people who donâ€™t know what they believe in.
- meatwad: I havenâ€™t read much about Unity â€˜08, but I certainly will. I totally agree with you that RP stands very little chance against the corporate spin machine. If we donâ€™t break this cycle of voting for rich, corporate sponsored a**hats that could care less about the average citizen, then this country is doomed.
- James Aragon: All though the Unity08 concept is intriguing, their platform falls out of step with Ron Paulâ€™s principles. And as you know by now, principles are what matter to this campaign.
- Ellis_Wyatt: As per my response on #1, weâ€™re going to push him to make the run no matter what. At some point one has to understand that we will not be disenfranchised any more. We are buying guns, storing food, and â€œhoardingâ€ gold. We are not f*cking around, ya hear? Iâ€™ve studied history, and I WILL have my freedom, so Iâ€™m ready for a hot war, whether the idiots who think Obamaâ€™s â€œcuteâ€ are or not. We donâ€™t care all that much about those folks – they are largely inconsequential, Iâ€™m sad to say. This really is for all the marbles, bro. Itâ€™s Germany 1932 in America right now, and WE KNOW IT. Itâ€™s fight or flight, and thereâ€™s nowhere to run to. Backed into the corner, we have turned to face the assailant. Now, either help us turn back the tide of tyranny, or get the hell out of my way. If you CHOOSE to help them, one way or another, I would not expect too much mercy from us when we win. Or: the traitors in DC are going to see some jail time (if theyâ€™re lucky!), and it ainâ€™t gonna be Club Fed.
- Jordan: Nope. Havenâ€™t even heard of Unity 08.
- bbartlog: Iâ€™ll take a look at the Unity site. But see my answer to 4); I donâ€™t exactly see why unity by itself is such a great thing. I certainly wouldnâ€™t be against Ron Paul running on a Unity ticket if it seemed to make sense.
- chad: No, that would be political suicide, how many independent debates have been televised on cnn,abc,cbs,fox or any other major media outlet? who cares if their name is on the ballot when people walking in the booth already know who they are going to vote for and have no who idea who John Cox is?
- Tannim: Not that a 3rd party doesnâ€™t make sense, but Unity08 has no ballot access and has little clue on how to get it. Ask Richard Winger about that. The LP does have that nationwide ballot access, but is running uphill against an unequal system designed to malevolently slam the door on third parties until the GOP goes the way of the Whigs in twelve years if Paul doesnâ€™t get the nomination.
- Spirit of ’76: I havenâ€™t heard of them, but Iâ€™ll look into it. For a while there have been rumors that both the Constitution Party and the Libertarian Party were also toying with the notion of nominating Paul, which would ensure him ballot access in all 50 states even if he doesnâ€™t get the Republican nomination, but Iâ€™m not sure that will actually pan out.
- James Maynard: Iâ€™ve looked at their site a couple times – Interesting – Like I said, if Hillary gets the D nominatin and the Rs nominate anyone but Paul, then yes, a unified R/P anti-war ticket could take it all. I wonder though if they actually DO have what it takes to get someone on the ballot in all 50 states. Lastly – Remember that RP is now polling at or above the numbers at this point in the election for Carter, Reagan, Dukakis (won nomination) and Clinton. Clinton was a dark horse even until AFTER the Iowa caucus – It was only then that Gennifer Flowers steped up accusing him of an affair and he went on 60 minutes to explain himself. He took 2nd in NH after that. Those who say it canâ€™t be done are ignoring recent history.
- Jim: What about the Unity Party? A 3rd party does make sense. Paul is a Republican though, and will push for the nomination first. SHould he not get it, he might run on a Libertarian/ Constitution ticket.
- mike: i think paul will run independently if he does not receive the nomination, because the people will demand it of him!
And there you have it.
Most of you had heard about Unity ’08 and are intrigued. Sure, some of you may think it’s a bad idea, but since when is free ballot access in 50 states a bad idea?
And while Unity ’08 does have a platform, I can only imagine that they’re going to be flexible enough to accommodate a candidate whose platform falls outside of the traditional left/right politics. That could be Michael Bloomberg. That could be Ron Paul. Who knows…
One thing that does puzzle me is why any of you would want to win the GOP nomination when it is patently pro-war. Ron Paul isn’t going to change his opinion on this and neither are a lot of primary voters. Sure, you’ll have a symbolic vote, but the faithful come out to vote in the primaries, not the regular voter, and the faithful believe in the Bush Doctrine. That’s why all the GOP candidates are essentially saying their foreign policy strategy would be the Bush Doctrine but done right…whatever that means.
If Paul breaks off from the GOP now and says that the party doesn’t represent real conservative values anymore, which is doesn’t, then he can mount a credible 3rd party run. If he gets to the primaries and doesn’t win and then starts a 3rd party bid…his credibility is DOA.
Just food for thought people. I know you’re passionate, and I’d hate to see all that go to waste. Especially since pretty much all of you are going to vote for Ron Paul for president no matter what. Wouldn’t you rather have more company at the polls?