Ron Paul’s Role at the Republican Convention Now in Romney’s Hands

  • Share
  • Read Later
Fort Worth Star-Telegram / MCT via Getty Images

Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul addresses the opening session of the Texas state Republican convention at the FWCC on Thursday June 7, 2012, in Fort Worth, Texas

After Ron Paul failed to get the plurality of Nebraska delegates at their state convention this past weekend, some in the media declared him “smoked.” His insurgency had ended. Goodbye, good doctor. In one sense, it was a final loss: Nebraska was the Texas congressman’s last chance to qualify for a nomination (however hopeless) and the accompanying limelight at the convention next month. But Paul is still going to Tampa. If he’s sidelined the way he was in 2008, holding his own events outside the GOP’s tent, it’ll be a story. If he and the Ronulans are embraced by the Republican Establishment, that’ll be a story. So either way, the story’s not completely over–though the headline, says a senior Paul adviser, “is totally to be decided by Mitt Romney.”

For months, Paul’s campaign said it had a long-term delegate strategy: ignore the hype that the campaign was tilting at windmills, methodically pick up the unbound delegates at state conventions and turn the Tampa convention into a brokered battle. “We feel good. We’re where we’d hoped we’d be,” campaign manager Jesse Benton told TIME back in March. “We’re very strongly positioned to win multiple state delegations.” He listed states where he thought they would be competitive: Iowa, Maine, Minnesota, Nevada, North Dakota and Washington–maybe Kansas, Missouri, Alaska and Hawaii. In the end, Paul won a plurality of delegates in Iowa, Maine, Minnesota and Louisiana–leaving him one short of the five pluralities required to have his name submitted for nomination.

(MORE: Why Ron Paul May Cut a Deal with Mitt Romney)

“We would have liked to have seen him nominated and have the speech and have that moment,” says senior adviser Doug Wead, but many in the campaign were losing hope long before Nebraska’s delegates marched into line behind Romney. They were out-maneuvered by Romney and the GOP Establishment at prior state conventions, Wead says, as early as North Dakota’s meeting at the beginning of April.

And then there was Paul’s dearth of attacks on Romney, compared to the healthy supply he leveled at Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum. Was this evidence of a deal? If so, what did Paul, who has promised to retire after this campaign, expect to get in return for his gentleness? The answer: Some of his ideas folded into the official party platform and future jobs for some of his staffers, who now work from their homes rather than a campaign HQ. Whatever it was, the implicit threat of running as a third-party candidate was supposed to make the deal sweeter. When asked, repeatedly, about that prospect, Paul always denied it … with the caveat that one never truly knows what the future holds. But that has been an empty threat for the past year, Wead says, and Romney figured that out.

(VIDEO: 10 Questions with Ron Paul)

The question the Romney campaign has in front of them now is whether they need Ron Paul and his supporters in their camp. And that will determine how Romney influences Paul’s role at the convention–either by helping the Congressman onto the stage or by trying to keep him from it. Will Team Romney be insular? Or will it create an all-for-one, one-for-all moment? There are reasons Romney should want Paul on his side. He appeals to young voters and independents, and his supporters generate an enthusiasm rarely matched by Romney’s fans: If the 2012 campaign is a high school, Ron Paul is the wacky teacher that the kids just love, and Romney is the principal.

Then again, Romney only needs to absorb those voters–some of whom will balk at the idea of supporting Romney regardless of what their leader says–if the race with Obama is as close as prognosticators have been suggesting. “He doesn’t need Paul if the unemployment numbers are right,” says Wead. “But if it’s a close one where everything counts, then he needs to co-opt Ron Paul in a big way.”

MORE: Romney Plays The Race Card

65 comments
mitchie124
mitchie124

Oh, B.S.!  The mainstream is a joke!  Even more of a joke are the people who blindly believe these bank run propaganda organizations.

JamsHamilton
JamsHamilton

I don't care I'm still voting for Ron Paul, If Obama wins it's Romney and the Republican party to blame for all their dirty underhanded B.S.

JamsHamilton
JamsHamilton

I don't care I'm still voting for Ron Paul, If Obama wins it's Romney and the Republican party to blame for all their dirty underhanded B.S.

Jen Tipton
Jen Tipton

Katy, will you please explain to all why Nevada and Colorado are not included as wins for RP?  It was clearly reported previously that RP won a majority of those delegates.  You'd help spare a lot of confusion...

Pat Strother
Pat Strother

My prediction: If Paul isn't allowed to speak at the convention, Romney will lose. The race is way too tight to alienate the energy of millions of young Ron Paul supporters. It's also time for the GOP to grow up and accept the power individuals are gaining over the entrenched elite establishment. This is the decision between a big tent party and an establishment, minority party.

filmnoia
filmnoia

Willard is going to lose anyway. Many of Paul's younger, more idealistic voters, weren't ever going to vote for Willard. They reside in an ideological divide where the libertarians overlap with the Green Party. There will be a small part of the populace who will "vote their conscience", still feel good and smug about it, and continue to be on the outside looking in.

rokinsteve
rokinsteve

Pat, The same thing happens here in the swamp if you say you won't vote Dem or Rep for mayor.  It's the Borg or the Hive or they tell you to hit the road.  

AlexanderMAI
AlexanderMAI

It is amazing to see to which lengths the media will go (e.g. Time) to in a snake like fashion discolor the picture and make it seem like Ron Paul has no chance or plurality; which is a baseless lie! Don't you people know how to count to 5! Colorado, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, and Nevada is actually 6!

Here is the actual count:

1.) COLORADO Ron Paul WINS! 18 to 16

2.) IOWA - Ron Paul WINS! 23 to 2

3.) LOUISIANA - Ron Paul WINS! 27 to 19

4.) MAINE - Ron Paul WINS! 21 -3

5.) MINNESOTA - Ron Paul WINS! 32 to 8

6.) NEVADA - Ron Paul WINS! 22 - 3

Ralphizm
Ralphizm

Ron Paul already has the 5 states required - 

Nevada, Maine, Minnesota, Louisana, Iowa... 

Why has the media continued to lie about this? 

Jason Albury
Jason Albury

If the media cant be believed in an election how the hell can we believe them in war, murder amp; finance and if the authorised regulators in the US refrain from stepping in and putting an end to the deceit then how can the word of the US be trusted around the globe? Ron Paul is being shafted from both ends by these acts and it is nothing short of a conspiracy of election terrorism....... this is the where the real war on terror, political terrorism, the US foundations laid by the founding fathers of the republic of America under in the constitution have all but been twisted to a point of near destruction........focus not on the twin towers even as bad as it was as they are a variable an event in time, rather focus on what is being lost the constants underwritten by the constitution that are being ignored and enacted laws stripping rights away from the people with unconstitutional laws..... every time someone gets shafted weather you support them or not your slowly booking yourself into one of the floors in the twin towers and the only way is down....Wake up from your slumber people of America! you are dishonouring you history and destroying your children's futures, from what ive seen if with this election America is the land of media spun propaganda, the process must be honoured and must be adhered to and must reflect the outcome honestly at home or there is no point promoting the American system throughout the world as a model!

Jason Albury
Jason Albury

Dont believe everything you read or hear, it isnt over 

bobell
bobell

Lord, what a fun year this is turning out to be.

sacredh
sacredh

It's even more fun when it looks like the guy we support is going to win.

beadstallcup
beadstallcup

No shortage of media whores trying to snooker everyone into giving up on Ron Paul, who, they claim,  is not really that important, but he is...

Nick Riley
Nick Riley

Ron Paul has earned my vote.  If the  Romney handlers do not respect Dr Paul, many of us will support another candidate on the ballot, some will write in Dr Paul's name in states where write-ins  count.  Some will swing to Robme, but not if they mistreat Ron Paul.  I really want to hear Dr Paul's speech.  That would be 15 minutes of pure teaching from a man who is retiring and looking back at 30 years dealing with Congress and Washington.  I think it would be like some of the speeches from "The Network"   when a retiring reporter gets honest with the listening audience.  It would be a great shift of  gears from a typical boring GOP convention full of empty promises and lame jokes.  Ron Paul 2012

Hans Rubec
Hans Rubec

Apparently, Americas majority likes the status quo. Sure, there are subtle differances between Romney and Obama, but they both have stated that they will continue the implosion on the critical issues. They are arguing over which end of the candle to burn. Dr. Paul offered real change, but the masses just love their sacred cows. Sad, but not surprising. The media certainly played a part in this, but, after all the clear evidence of fraud and manipulation, you have to conclude that people have to be willing to be fooled on that level. Future generations will hate us for our selfishness...and they should.

Rush River Media
Rush River Media

Spot on. The one glimmering bit of hope from all of this is that folks are starting to dig in against status quo and with time on our side, the movement will continue to grow. It will. 

goodfite
goodfite

As far as I can tell, Romney and Obama are arguing over which one is the bigger crook and liar.

coolstyling
coolstyling

The entire GOP caucus/primary system has been disgraceful. Remove the voter fraud which has been extremely well documented, and at the very least we'd have a dogfight. Paul supporters will not cave in, and libertarians will not support either Mittens or BoBo. Either way, the focus should continue to be a libertarian takeover of the sate parties, and 2016 will be vastly different. The r3VOLution will continue until we restore the Constitution and the Republic. Ron Paul remains the most important American statesman since Thomas Jefferson. and the impact of this campaign will be felt for generations. There is a fire in the belly to end the police state, tyrannical oligarchy, and corporatism. No one can defeat an idea, and we will not cave in to our oppressors. RON PAUL 2012

bobell
bobell

Could you please give us some links to the "well documented" voter fraud affecting the GOP nominating process?  Usually it's the Demos that are accused of voter fraud.  I find it both novel and very interesting to see such charges leveled against the Rebublicals.

coolstyling
coolstyling

 Bobell, I'll dig a little bit when I get some free time, but there are plenty of YouTube videos. Just search Republican Party primary voter fraud. One technique actually used was to change the algorithm in the computer based voting machines so that a vote for Paul actually would count for Romney . The algorithm has been programmed to be sneaky, however, only popping up every so many votes, but it did have an impact in several states and cost the Paul campaign dearly. Tough to prove, though, in an election cycle when there is only so much rime and designated dates for elections are established like they are, and the machines are cleared after the votes are counted. Sickening, isn't it?

sacredh
sacredh

Just curious. Did you spell revolution that way because you'd been flagged by homeland security or something? There aren't any other creative spelling examples in your post.

coolstyling
coolstyling

 Oh, who knows if I've been flagged or not. I'm a loud-mouthed libertarian because if we stay silent, we are part and parcel to our descent into fascism. The spelling is based on the Paul's campaign using the word LOVE in reverse  in the middle of the word revolution. It's a very American thing to be a revolutionary. This is our heritage, and when we embrace it , the state loses power over us. There is nothing I want more than to break the power and control o government over our lives and return us to the freedom we were meant to enjoy simply by virtue of being born.

goodfite
goodfite

3VOL spells LOVE backwards. It's done on Ron Paul bumper stickers,etc.

sacredh
sacredh

Thanks goodfite for the information. I'm not a Ron Paul supporter, but I do admire the dedication and tenacity of his base. Those who support him are by far the most loyal.

Zach Zeurcher
Zach Zeurcher

Your either an idiot or you are flat out lying. Paul has Colorado, Iowa. Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, and Nevada. Stop this bull shit

jmholtzapple
jmholtzapple

A comment on the headline alone, because it was so inaccurate I couldn't even start to read the article: 

Ron Paul’s Role at the Republican Convention Now in THE DELEGATES' Hands.  The media is ignorant to not report the true voting process.  They'll feed you estimates and false calculations all summer long, and none of it means anything until delegate votes are counted at the convention itself.  If this is all meant to create drama when Ron Paul is nominated on the convention floor, the media should be ASHAMED of themselves, for it's a horrible disservice to the American (and global) public.

kbanginmotown
kbanginmotown

There's "Sweeps Week" and there's "Shark Week".  

We have "Locust Week". Go figure.

nflfoghorn
nflfoghorn

Yeh.  That HDNCO or whatever his handle is had a case of diarrhea of the keyboard yesterday.

sacredh
sacredh

I had some fun with him last night. I usually try not to get into personal attacks, but that lunatic was just begging for it. I think the chances are high that he was a young one.

bobell
bobell

And today we get another set of initials -- JAIIIIV -- to replace Old Yeller (0r whatever his name was) and post anti-Semitism.  I'm almost embarrassed to be seen in such company.

Blue_Guybrush
Blue_Guybrush

People like him, I can't help but wonder if they're plants to discredit RP, his supporters, and liberty in general. I know I feel really ashamed and weird for being a resolute Paulian when I see the anti-Semitic bullshit..

satta
satta

Paul will not be allowed in the convention center, just like last time.  Republicans would rather purge the Paul faction and run as a minority party than allow genuine small-government advocacy to gain a foothold in their midst.

Asher Jonas
Asher Jonas

I have yet to hear anything close to an unbiased opinion from jewish reporters about Dr. Ron Paul...I wonder why---oh wait. :/

JAIIIIV
JAIIIIV

I've seen a couple who seemed fair with Dr. Paul, but the Zionist ones most definitely are/were out to give him "the treatment."  When they couldn't think of anything else, they'd dust off those old "racist" e-mails from decades back.  Pure desperation.  Most of the non-Jewish American flotsam who've swallowed the anti-Paul propaganda hook, line, and sinker, still believe that endless mantra of Georgie Boy Bush:  "they want to take away our freedom."  But hey, stupidity is as common as dirt.  It's why they are called RAMS.

Jim Aikens
Jim Aikens

Ron Paul already had the plurality of delegates neccessarry without Nebraska. With the plurality of delegates of at least 5 states we're not talking about him just securing a speaking role. He now qualifies to have is name entered into nomination at the RNC to be the Republican nominee and guaranteed a speach prior to the first round of voting. When you couple that with the GOP admitting that no delegates are bound to vote for any one nominee on the first ballot,  this is going to be interesting to say the least.

bobell
bobell

Before Romney "clinched" the nomination, I used to say that no one would win the Republican nomination. In a left-handed sort of way, I may yet be proven right.

sacredh
sacredh

Romney is so inept that he couldn't clinch his butt cheeks.

bobell
bobell

I put "clinch" in quotes because I think there's still a small chance the Republicals may try to dump him.  Unfortunately for them (and fortunately for the country), there's no decent candidate in the wings who will agree to replace him.  Why, for example, should Tim Pawlenty or Rob Portman take over command of Romney's Titanic of a campaign?

This year is kind of a funhouse mirror reflection of 1992.  Back then the incumbent looked unbeatable and several excellent prospective Demo candidates passed on running.  So a relatively obscure and hardly ideal Arkanas governor stepped up and, with a combination of (1) far more political savvy than anyone had given him credit for and (2) bad timing of a recession for Bush, waltzed home in the general.

This time around we have an incumbent who has always looked vulnerable and several people eager to take him on. But most of the best of the prospective candidates either passed (Mitch Daniels) or faded quickly (Tim Pawlenty). So that left Mitt Romney, whose general election prospects still looked fairly rosy (and would have been a lot rosier were it not for the constant pressure on him from the lunatic right).  Then the incumbent figured out a solid line of attack on the challenger and turnewd the race right around even as the challenger proved far more inept than even the pessimists among his supporters had thought. Shades of 1948.

What does all this have to do with Ron Paul, and what does Ron Paul have to do with all this?  Pretty much nothing.  The impulse simply overcame me.

JAIIIIV
JAIIIIV

Do you in the quickly-becoming-irrelevant mainstream Zionist media really think you can squash the Ron Paul movement?  With the media so against his ideas, it will naturally take a while for the masses to get it, but they will.

Raymond Gardner
Raymond Gardner

Not totaly true! Ron Paul already has more than 5 state confirmed as winning. These MsM outlets are trying to kill the US and need to be Lynched!

JAIIIIV
JAIIIIV

Do you in the Zionist media really believe the Ron Paul movement is dead?  Hardly.  Give it some time.

nflfoghorn
nflfoghorn

Anti-Semites for Paul???

nunyabizness71
nunyabizness71

 Nope,  America exists only to be used at Israels whim...

Blue_Guybrush
Blue_Guybrush

There's an unfortunate vocal minority of Paul supporters who conflate his even-handed foreign policy with an anti-Zionist idea, even thought RP has said he supports Israel's independence and autonomy. Most of these strange people aren't even libertarians.

JAIIIIV
JAIIIIV

It depends on what your definition of "anti-Zionist" is.  Ron Paul is clearly against Israel continuing to bleed America--with money and blood--for its own advancement in the world.  But he has to tread very carefully with it of course.  That said, he still is smeared as an anti-Semite in some circles.

JAIIIIV
JAIIIIV

I'm impressed,  fanboy.

bobell
bobell

"The Zionist media"?  Time magazine?

Dammit, sacred, you've gotta pick your nuthouses more carefully.

sacredh
sacredh

Sssshhh! I paid this one. It seemed like a good idea at the TIME.