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Ron Paul and Mitt Romney allied?

Are Ron Paul and MItt Romney allied? Or is a certain leftist blog suggesting that merely to provoke more dissension in the Republican rank and file? The evidence is sketchy at best.

Why Ron Paul and Mitt Romney might be allies

First to suggest that Ron Paul and Mitt Romney are allies was Rick Santorum. On February 23, after the last CNN debate, Santorum complained that Paul and Romney had attacked him in “tag team” fashion. (Source: Toby Harnden of Mail Online.)

Clearly there’s a tag team strategy between Ron Paul and Mitt Romney. For all I know, Mitt Romney might be considering Ron Paul as his running mate. Clearly there is now an alliance between those two and you saw that certainly in the debate.

Santorum returned to that theme the next day, according to The Daily Caller. His evidence? Ron Paul ran attack ads against Santorum in Michigan, one of two States (the other is Arizona) that will have primaries tomorrow (February 28). And yet Ron Paul made no campaign stops in Michigan. More broadly,  Ron Paul and Mitt Romney have each attacked Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich mercilessly. But never once has either candidate directly attacked the other. (At least, not in the last few months. But Ron Paul did attack Mitt Romney in June of last year, over American policy in Afghanistan.)

No less than The New York Times has speculated that Ron Paul and Mitt Romney might be allies. But as Jim Galloway of The Atlantic Journal-Constitution observes, all that the Times has shown is that the two camps are more than usually civil and friendly to one another.

Michael Mernoli of The Charlotte Observer quoted Ron Paul’s son, Rand (the junior Senator from Kentucky), as saying that he “would be honored” to have Mitt Romney consider him as his running mate. So perhaps Ron Paul is looking for a Vice-Presidential spot, not for himself, but for his son.

Catalina Camia of USA Today also believes in a Ron Paul/Mitt Romney partnership. As evidence, she offered a “study” of twenty debates that ThinkProgress.org released today. That organ says again that Ron Paul has never attacked Mitt Romney once. (But what do they call Ron Paul’s performance in the June 14, debate, in a clip they themselves uploaded to their own YouTube channel?) Pat Cunningham of The Rockford Register-Star cited that same “study.” (Ryan Witt, at Examiner.com, “examined” much the same evidence.) But Brian Doherty at Reason disputes ThinkProgress on this and cited two more video clips of Ron Paul specifically criticizing something that Mitt Romney had said.

What Ron Paul and Mitt Romney might hope to gain

Mitt Romney: allied with Ron Paul? Or is that an insubstantial rumor?
Former Governor Mitt Romney at a townhall in Sun Lakes, Arizona. Photo: Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 2.0 Generic License

If Ron Paul and Mitt Romney have formed a “tag team” against the other two, each might have a motive beyond simple friendship. Romney lacks the support of young people and some Tea Party voters that Paul has. Ron Paul wants to “broker” the convention. If Paul can do that, he can demand the right to speak before the delegates and set up a lasting movement in the Republican Party for the principles he holds dear. (Charles Krauthammer suggested this.) He might even be able to demand a Cabinet post, perhaps that of Secretary of the Treasury.

The problem, other than the examples of Ron Paul attacking Mitt Romney that ThinkProgress ignores (or makes light of), is this. For Ron Paul to partner with Mitt Romney in this way would be utterly out of character. It would be the sort of back-room deal that he has always roundly condemned. And Mitt Romney might understand something that a liberal might not: Ron Paul is not a conservative, but a libertarian. So perhaps Romney

Is ThinkProgress lying?

To repeat, ThinkProgress ignores at least three examples in which Ron Paul has attacked Mitt Romney, and in public, since the campaign began. Nor were these oversights; one of those examples comes directly from ThinkProgress’ own channel on YouTube.

Why might they be lying? To try to induce Ron Paul’s followers to:

  1. Form a third party, or
  2. Set up a machine for fifty-one write-in campaigns.

No one in the history of Presidential elections has ever set up a write-in campaign for Presidential electors. A political party always files a slate of elector-candidates in each of the fifty States, and the District of Columbia. No write-in candidate could hope to compel a State Department of State to appoint electors with a pledge to vote for that candidate, no matter how many votes he got. But CNAV has the direct experience of conversing with a few of Ron Paul’s more obstreperous supporters. They insist that if the Republican Party does not nominate Dr. Paul, they will write his name in anyway. And they do not care about any rules that forbid them to elect Presidential electors in Ron Paul’s name. So they say.

Such people are a minority of Dr. Paul’s supporters. And Dr. Paul will never form a third party. He will do nothing to put his son’s career in jeopardy. He can probably count on most of his supporters to understand this.

Both candidates have denied that they are partners in anything. True, Mitt Romney has not attacked Ron Paul in his advertisements. Then again, no one has, so that is inconclusive.

So are Ron Paul and Mitt Romney partners? Probably not. But they might still strike a deal at the Convention in late summer.

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Terry A. Hurlbut has been a student of politics, philosophy, and science for more than 35 years. He is a graduate of Yale College and has served as a physician-level laboratory administrator in a 250-bed community hospital. He also is a serious student of the Bible, is conversant in its two primary original languages, and has followed the creation-science movement closely since 1993.

candidate, constitutional law, politicians, president


Terry A. Hurlbut

Terry A. Hurlbut has been a student of politics, philosophy, and science for more than 35 years. He is a graduate of Yale College and has served as a physician-level laboratory administrator in a 250-bed community hospital. He also is a serious student of the Bible, is conversant in its two primary original languages, and has followed the creation-science movement closely since 1993.

Comments (5)

  • The first person to suggest a partnership between the two was one of the other candidates – I forget which. This was initially dismissed as whining, but then when people started looking, they found that it might be true. It didn’t start with ThinkProgress at all.

    • Maybe it didn’t start with ThinkProgress (and I didn’t actually say that it did, either), but they tried to egg it on. Trouble was, they said that Ron Paul had never attacked Mitt Romney—not once—during the campaign. Three embedded videos say that they’re lying about that.

      I also named the candidate who did start it: Rick Santorum. (He, more than Newt or Mitt, has tangled directly with Ron Paul, and strictly over the war-and-peace angle.)

  • Ron Paul’s character and consistency doesn’t fit this allegation. His following recognizes his consistent moral compass IS his most powerful attribute above politics.

    I think most people are beginning to see through the two party paradigm and seeing that Ron Paul doesn’t fit the statist mold of the others.

    His biggest enemy is fear of change….. many people can’t believe there is no free government lunch, and the lame stream media keeps them nervous about the terror myth.

    The hope and change disaster of Obama makes them wary of ‘change’ and ‘revolution’ is scarier yet.

    The pen is mightier than the sword, so keep up the good work, Terry.

    • Ron Paul needs to give people an education the like of which they’ve never had before. And that is: how to be sure that the world will still be safe enough for Americans to live in, do business in, or travel abroad in, without the kind of American power projection that he insists stands in violation of the Constitution. (Or that he says we can no longer afford.) And he might have to make one thing clear that his opponents might have a motive to muddy up: namely that whether a given act or policy of violence on the part of another country is just or excusable, is a different issue from whether it is our place to set that right.

      Recall that a certain witness accused Dr. Paul of saying, many years ago, that it would have been better had the Republic of Israel never been. If he never said that, he can probably say so and make it stick. If he said it once before and does not stand by it now, I can accept that, too. (The hardest thing for any politician to do, seems to be to admit that what he once stood by and for in the past, was wrong, and he has learned enough since then to know that it was wrong.) And one case that Dr. Paul seems to have made, is that Israel has made a Faustian bargain with previous United States administrations, and that today we ought to let them out of that bargain.

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