Ron Paul has consistently and pointedly denied that he has any plans to run as a third-party candidate in 2012.
Though some pundits had suggested that if he were not nominated by the Republicans, and Ron Paul did run with a third-party, it would potentially cause problems for the establishment's eventual pick for the nomination. And possibly allow a very unpopular President to be re-elected.
Since the national campaign is about to open a much anticipated headquarters in Denver this Sunday, I thought I would talk with some Ron Paul supporters here in Colorado about the candidate's chances in the Republican primary.
Assuming the national polling is accurate that 11%-15% of registered Republicans support him, with a much broader base among independents, Libertarians, and "blue-dog" Democrats; it's obvious that Principle trumps Party among the Paulites.
Local activist, and Ron Paul supporter, Angela Ripple says "I like Ron Paul a lot more than I may hate Barack Obama's policies. My own goal is not just to get Barack Obama out of office, but to get Ron Paul elected."
She added; "We will spoil their election if he doesn't get the nomination."
CSU student, and Young Americans for Liberty member, Kristian Morey summed it up by saying, "He's definitely got my vote, that's not a question...We know that he's been honest, we can all safely say he's been consistently honest. And I'll take minarchy where I can get it."
"The climate is just right."
Jeffrey Schitter, owner of Healing Glow Studio and former Congressional candidate, said that "My vote will go to a candidate who understands the Constitution and is principled enough to stand up for it...there are no other candidates running for President who understand the Constitution, much less have the principle to defend it against all enemies".
He continued, "If I cannot find a candidate on the ballot who fulfills my requirements, I will write-in Ron Paul, and I will not lose a minute of sleep because of it."
Robbie Van Winkle, a first-year student at Metro, said that "I would not vote for anyone else because they are either [too] far right, or they don't really support a Constitutional government. That is what I believe in and that's how this country was founded."
This is just a small cross-section of the very vocal support that Ron Paul is receiving in Colorado, and a big reason that the campaign is opening a rallying point in Denver's Stapleton neighborhood.
“Let it not be said that no one cared, that no one objected once it’s realized that our liberties and wealth are in jeopardy.”
― Ron Paul
Supporting a candidate who was pitching for the Iraq war, the Patriot Act, or the bail-outs seems to not be an option to those supporting Ron Paul, a man who vehemently opposed these usurpations of the Constitution on the floor of the House in speech and in vote.
To think that these people will make the leap from preferring a Constitutionally limited government to a government that makes arbitrary rules enforced with the threat of violence is a big stretch, even for the typically out-of-touch RNC.
The establishment within the GOP seem to foolishly underestimate the citizenry's disillusionment with the entire system, ignoring the fact that many are now seeing past the puppet in the White House, to a candidate that rejects the status quo.
It seems, at the moment, that the RNC is willing to cut its nose off in spite of its face, by all but rejecting a large and unwavering segment of their own Party.
They might be doing so at their own peril. You know, assuming that a win for the GOP is even their goal.
DISCLAIMER: I cover Ron Paul and his supporters' voices in this manner because a large majority of individuals in the media cannot seem to grasp the ideas of liberty, the rejection of force, and individual sovereignty that Dr. Paul represents to a great number of Americans. And subsequently ignore or marginalize them.