Top of the Ticket

Political commentary from Andrew Malcolm

« Previous Post | Top of the Ticket Home | Next Post »

Ron Paul, Dr. No-body, beats Rudy and Fred -- again

Well, he's hanging in there. Not only that, but Rep. Ron Paul thumped two reputed Republican heavyweights in the Michigan primary -- former Sen. Fred Thompson of Tennessee and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

Who'd have predicted that a couple of months ago?

Giuliani, you may recall if you can remember anything as distant as last summer, was the longtime GOP national front-runner in polls. He ran strongly against everybody in his party, even former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who won one last night, taking his home state from Sen. John McCain, who won there in 2000. Everybody wondered if anyone had a chance against the hero of 9/11, who defied standard Republican theocracy with his liberal social views.

But guess what? Ron Paul, the 72-year-old Texas congressman and ob-gyn who delivers babies and a strict view of the Constitution, beat Giuliani in Michigan. And beat him good. Not only that ...

he doubled Giuliani's totals of 24,000 votes, or 2.8%, getting more than 52,000 votes, or 6.3%, of the total Republican ballots.

Paul even beat Thompson this time, the real consistent conservative who was supposed to be the next Ronald Reagan until he actually announced his campaign in September. Thompson got about 31,000 votes, or 3.7%, which is more than Rudy but still less than the nobody congressman with the libertarian views whom few people but his passionate partisans took seriously months ago. He's often called Dr. No for his consistent congressional votes against spending.

Paul was so written off that Fox News banned him from its recent debate in New Hampshire. Oops, now the Paulunteers are organizing a boycott of Fox sponsors in return for the snub, a move that Dennis Kucinich's fans are now calling for against MSNBC for barring him from Tuesday's Democratic debate in Las Vegas.

True, Romney killed all his Republican competitors in Michigan, as he had to, with more than 326,000 votes, nearly 39%, with McCain trailing at 29.7%, or 248,000. Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee garnered less than half of Romney's votes, 135,000, or 16%.

And it's also true that Thompson and Giuliani didn't really campaign seriously in Michigan. Or New Hampshire. Or Iowa except for a last-minute Thompson bus tour. Obviously, both Giuliani and Thompson are intentionally laying back, trying to make the rest of the Republican field overconfident. No doubt.

Paul hasn't won anything yet, either, except the continued devotion of his followers and growing national attention, including two national TV appearances on "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno" plus a full hour on "Meet the Press." On Tuesday, Richard Viguerie, the noted conservative author, announced he's launching a website to support Paul. Viguerie called Paul "truly a principled conservative in the grand tradition of Robert Taft, Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan."

Paul just keeps picking up his 6% to 10% each time there's a vote. But Paul also beat Giuliani in Iowa. And he came pretty close to Giuliani in New Hampshire and did, in fact, beat Thompson there. And now in Michigan, Paul beat them both rather handily. He does it by going against virtually all the views of his GOP colleagues, including opposing the Iraq war.

Fueled by the generous donations of Paul believers, the congressman was probably the most successful GOP fundraiser in the fourth quarter, acquiring nearly $20 million then and, according to his website, more than $834,000 more so far this month. He's already launched an eight-state ad blitz and has been campaigning in recent days in South Carolina, where he has three offices and will return later this week, and across Nevada. He got skunked in Wyoming, where Romney won, but imagine if Paul scored big one day in the wild West, where many people believe government got too big about 100 years ago.

Paul's website and new campaign blog claim to have quietly organized more than 7,800 precinct captains around the country. Meantime, Giuliani's top staff is going unpaid this month to save dwindling funds. Is there a pattern here?

So, while the "front-running" Republicans each win one state and no one builds up a head of steam, Paul just keeps hanging around, like a bad cold. Some of the other Republican candidates should be careful, lest they get the sniffles one of these days.

-- Andrew Malcolm

Comments () | Archives (483)

The comments to this entry are closed.

I am 47 years old and find most of the Baby Boomer generation has lost its bite.
It makes me feel good to see the "Youthful" Generation supporting Ron Paul.
I think there are cycles in life, as in generations realize they need to step up and be heard.
This Youthful Crowd following Ron Paul, needs to get their parents up off their potato azzes and energize them.
Tell them to give Ron Paul 1 term, and go from there.
I mean, how much damage can one person do in 4 years?
Surely people can look at the last 5 elections, "Bush, Clinton, Clinton, Bush, Bush, (What now, Clinton, Clinton?), are you kidding me?
Step up, Shake it up, and try something refreshing (Real Change).
Bring our Children back to Their Country...
Let's return THIS country to Greatness and Respectability first.
Then we can lead, by example.
Not everyone in the world wants to be part of OUR way of Life.
When Mr. Putin pulls up to our shores and tells us how we need to live.....
What will our reaction be???
Wake Up America!!!

Ron Paul is a Wacko because he believes in the foundation of what made this country great.
The Foundation is that piece of paper called the Constitution.
The problem with all the "Haters" of Ron Paul, is most probably haven't lived in a foreign country, and have become numb to the "Staus-Quo" Government "Representatives.
See how they are all ears, acting as though they care what we think?
They just want your vote, and they'll probably get it.
Once they're in? Same old, Same Old. You'll see.
If 70% want our troops back, why aren't the people elected to represent us, bringing them back home?
No Excuses, Saddam and his Cronies have been toppled (A few years ago), it's time they stepped up and ran their own Country.
No Excuses people. If you are that lame, that you can't see what has happened to this country, by the "Gradual" dividing of Ourselves, From Fear, it will only get worse.
Remember we used to leave our doors unlocked (Many Years ago) ,then day after day we are bombarded with the ills of the world.
GRADUALLY, we close and lock ourselves in, from fear.
Where was this fear, many many years ago?
Where has this fear Evolved from?
You are right on, the Media has conditioned (Brainwashed) our society.
If you continually bombard someone with negativity, are they going to be a negative or a positive person?
Do we raise our kids with Negativity or Positivity?
Think, and take breaks away from that damn TV.

Where did my Posts Go?
Guess the truth hurts.
Ron Paul for President.
Tell your elders to watch one debate, if Ron Paul ever gets a FAIR shake.

I agree that Fox is very biased and not just against RP.They have had a hit on Huckabee since his surge scared them. They are part of the establishment Repubs and should be boycotted by both Huckabee and Paul supporters. I don't support RP but believe every candidate deserves to not have an organized media campaign against them. Each candidate should be ale to share opinions without fighting against bias media. Fair and balanced is a joke when used in the same sentnce with Foxie News

Ron Paul Save us ALL!

Wow! I just say this article featured on Dr. Paul's website. It is about time Dr. Paul starts calling out the media's (FOX/MSNBC) bias towards him. CNN does a fair job.

Tonight, I introduced Dr. Ron Paul to my parents. We YouTubed his speeches and debates, then YouTube the FOX post debates since May 2007 and noted how often and how much FOX has tried to bury Dr. Paul. FOX will not even believe it's own cell phone surveys (any of them) when Dr. Paul wins.

Thank you for reporting this.

FOX NEWS reportedly deleted Ron Paul's key debate response from the last debate in a LIVE REBROADCAST they recently aired. How is it a LIVE REBROADCAST if you splice out that which you don't want the voting public to hear? Like Ron Paul or not, this should disturb you in my humble opinion.

CAMERON: Congressman Paul, yet another question about electability.
Do you have any, sir? There's always the question as to whether or not...
... you are, in fact, viable. Your differences with the Republicans on the -- with the rest of the Republi-cans on this stage has raised questions about whether or not you can actually win the Republican nomi-nation, sir.
PAUL: Well, we've only had two little primaries so far. So it's pretty premature to decide which one is going to be the candidate.
But, you know, when you think about it, if you measured everything I've ever said, every vote I've ever taken against the Constitution, you know, I'm a strict constitutionalist.
Are you suggesting the Republicans should write me off because I'm a strict constitutionalist? I'm the most conservative member here. I have voted, you know, against more spending and waste in govern-ment than anybody else.
So you're suggesting that I'm not electable and the Republicans don't want me because I'm a strict fiscal conservative, because I believe in civil liberties? Why should we not be defending civil liberties and why should we not be talking about foreign policy that used to be the part of the Republican Party?
PAUL: Mr. Republican Robert Taft didn't even want us to be in NATO and you're saying now that we have to continue to borrow money from China to finance this empire that we can't afford?
Let me see if I get this right. We need to borrow $10 billion from China, and then we give it to Mushar-raf, who is a military dictator, who overthrew an elected government. And then we go to war, we lose all these lives promoting democracy in Iraq. I mean, what's going on here?
And you're saying that this isn't appealing to Republicans? Where did this come about? I think this is the Republican message. I defend the platform. It used to say we'd (inaudible) the Department of Education. It doesn't say that now.
We, as Republicans, went and doubled the size of the Department of Education, so where have we gone? I think we've lost our way. And then the insinuation that I am less Republican because of that?
HUME: Congressman, thank you very much.

In response, the official Ron Paul 2008 Campaign blog asks,

" could any semi-reputable news source cut a presidential candidate's answer in a debate? And how could a network that hundreds of thousands of conservatives trust delete the most forcefully conservative, Constitutionalist, anti-statist answer that any candidate gave that night?"

This is a fantastic article, and I just wanted to say that I'm grateful to the LA Times and Andrew Malcolm for such a refreshingly positive article on Ron Paul in a vicious storm of mainstream media negativity and bias.

Oh, you sly dogs you! Gotta love it; all this Ron Paul bashing and just when you get a huge following of Ron Paul teeth grinders, you start this tribute to the truth! C'mon, you know we are all a bunch of malcontent, mass media haters! Why do you have to make us Ron Paul supporters feel so guilty for all of those bad things we have said about you in the past ;-)

OK, I'm hooked. "Top Of The Ticket" reminds me of a gaper's block on the side of the highway and I just cant stop watching now. Damn you guys!

(Can't help it if I'm irresistible. :) Glad to have you. Our numbers are growing by the day. The more the merrier. Thanks for reading and taking the time to leave such a pleasant note. You made my day--what's left of it. See you soon. Oh, keep checking back. We've got an item in the works on a very special Ron Paul supporter.)

Well, I'm not so sure your article was completely fair and balanced, but then this isn't a Fox News blog.

I think you gave one to Ron Paul this time.

Ron Paul's message does need to get a fair hearing and I thank you for not writing him off, even though he has not yet exceeded anyone's expectations.

I find it strange that I'm starting to think the LA Times might be a better source of fair and balanced commentary than Bill O'Reilly's no spin zone.

(Well, that wouldn't break our hearts. Appreciate your reading and leaving a comment. Hope to see you back here soon--and often.)

Perfect post.

Well done.

Great story! Well-written and intuitive! Is America finally waking up? Hopefully, the rest of the news media will follow suit. "Write on," L.A. Times!

I know for a fact that 99% of my fellow Americans within the top Southern heritage organizations are "Paulers". His message is so right on the mark of what we as loyal Southern Americans have been trying to say for 140 years. Paul has stated that he respects ALL of the Souths history. He doesnt him and haw around the bush when it comes to the straw man issue of the "controversial Confederate flag".

The South was fighting for its own survival and to preserve the Constitution as it was intended and to kepp the government chained down by it. Isnt that what all ron paulers are fighting for?

Ron Paul only solidifies my opinion that the South was right and this time the whole country is at stake..

After several state primaries, the Republican Party has failed to unify party support for one candidate.

Email the National Republican Senatorial Committee and let them know who you think the next President should be -

When a news source does report on the Ron Paul look what happens: Hundreds of responses in just a few hours. Now ask yourself, why is the MSM consistantly ignoring the candidate who could concievably get them the most ratings?
All of the haters who don't do their homework ask yourselves, if Ron Paul really were a racist, why aren't the major medias all over him like they are Obama and Clinton right now? If you live in California you are quite aware that the federal government has been stepping on your states rights for quite awhile now, Just take the medical marijauana(sp?) issue.
The Last few days anything Ron Paul that surfaces on the internet has a nasty habit of disappearing quite quickly so read fast, and save screenshots/web pages. The information you read today might be pulled by tomorrow.

(Well, 1) thanks for visiting us, 2) the Ron Paul items here don't seem to disappear, you can find them by the dozens by clicking on his name in the index to the right here and I hope you'll return often and soon. We have a special story coming on another hard-working Paul supporter who had a unique idea to help.)

Excellent points, sir, but also, don't forget, the two "big front runners" Mitt and McCain will be running out of two things soon: 1) in Mitt's case, early primaries where he's already spent a lot of money and time or where his dad was Governor; 2) in McCain's case, early primaries where he still has an org and some name recognition from 2000. After SC, and especially when Thompson places fourth in SC and drops out, HuckaPaul will be on the rise, while Rudy McRomney will be on the ropes, Mitt and McCain GOING down, Rudy STAYING down.

Nice to know that whether it's Huckabee or Paul, the GOP nominee will be for getting rid of the IRS and thinks US foreign policy is arrogant. YEEEEEEEIIIIIIIHAAAAWWWWWWW!!!!

It takes longer for the public to come to know Ron Paul, because he doesn't speak in sound bytes and empty generalities meant to pander to the group of the day. To understand his positions, you might actually have to think a though! Neurons may have to fire. As we all know, this is a pretty demanding order for the current political media bias....I'm sick of hearing that "he has no chance "while continuing to talk up some of his less successful counterparts as "viable alternatives." Blech.

It's been a VERY long time since I have felt anything but completely disenfranchised with the political system. Ron Paul has changed that, and whether it's considered "crazy" or not by some, it's given me a little hope for our country for the first time in many years.

I don't get it....what IS the argument against a Ron Paul presidency? and is it inline with what we've been taught being an american is? Remember just because you have choices doesn't mean you are free. I would love to hear any valid arguement AGAINST Dr. Paul...not just that he's a wack job or his supporters are conspiracy theorists. What about this guy's ideals has people so afraid they have to bash him the only way they can.....with empty insults of character? Please someone tell me. I'd love to know, so I can consider it when I make my choice.

I am an immigrant from Asia who has lived here for well over 2 decades. I and some of my immigrant friends are seriously thinking about moving back to where we came from because we don't want to live in a socialized America. This great nation has lost her way and has become a country of social programs, government control and regulations (I'm sure the last one explains why there're so many lawyers in this country). Americans are losing their liberty bit by bit. When we return to the US from a trip, we have to tell the government where have we been and for how long. It's really none of their business because we are citizens, not tourists. In a few years, we'll not be allowed to use incandescent lightbulbs (if you do some research, you'll find that most fluorescent lightbulbs use the same amount of energy as incandescent lightbulbs). Soon, the government may be monitoring our internet activiies like in communist China. That's scary! This is no longer a free country. Most Americans are too ignorant to realize what is going on because they can no longer think for themselves. They let the govement to do all the thinking and expect the government to take care of everything. As longer as this kind of mentality prevails, nothing will ever get changed. I am glad to see that at least a honest politician like Ron Paul has come out and tell the truth, and thanks for the internet, his words are being heard. I hope more and more people will wake up from LaLa Land and hear his message. It's unlikely that he can win the nomination without the support of core Republicans but at least this "revolution" is spreading, especially among young people who are the future of this country.

We need Ron Paul to win, these clowns currently in DC just don't get it.

Hello from The Midwest, I guess we can't say it enough.

Thank you!

I'm amazed by the amount of comments on this article.

We need to keep the rEVOLution going. January 21st MONEY BOMB

Donate what you can

I currently support Mike Huckabee, but I am willing to switch to Fred Thompson, if the Giuliani, Romney, and McCain people will do the same. Let's focus on the fight in November!

Ron Paul is a one trick pony with a similar delivery as Ross Perot in a previous generation's maverick political scene. His views are more libertarian than republican. And he doesn't want to take the steps that must be taken to secure our borders. The only candidate with a detailed plan in that regard is Fred Thompson. I hope he does well tomorrow(actually today as I write this). I truly believe that if we try to mitigate the traditional views of the party, we will end up with a platform nobody can support.

I don't get it....what IS the argument against a Ron Paul presidency? and is it inline with what we've been taught being an american is?
(I dont know what you've been taught, that George Washington chopped down a cherry tree? That the native Americans were glad to meet the white man? That the Civil War was about Slavery?)
The argument against a Ron Paul presidency is the fact that his ideals are right out of 1878 and 1850, and that the policies that existed then will no longer work in the world of today. For instance, all this non sense about the "evil" fed and it's policy of taxation through inflation. What many people leave out is that if we instantly returned to the gold standard, the United States would undergo massive deflation-which if you owe any money at all to anyone is a horrible thing. Not to mention that a moderately low rate of inflation is actually good for the economy because of the incentive to invest that it provides. Further, Ron Paul's stance on states rights is extreme to be sure. I'm surprised he doesn't refer to our nation as "these" United States, instead of "the" United States.
Lastly, imagine for a moment that Ron Paul does manage to win the will he implement any of his policies. As president, he has a constitutionally limited ability to change things, and it's doubtful that a largely hostile congress would be willing to adopt his policies. I could easily see RP refusing to sign any new bills that aren't in line with his vision of how America should be. But I can also easily see Congress overriding him time and time again. In short, despite the fact that his ideas on how to run a modern nation are antiquated at best, he would be an ineffective president.

Ellen K -

Here's a thought: Go read Ron Paul's stance on immigration. He has said that the best way to get rid of illegal aliens is to abolish the welfare state. The vast majority of illegal aliens will leave, and a significant number of native-born citizens who bash Ron Paul will also leave the country.

Chris -

Fred Thompson's campaign (as I stated earlier) is on life support, and he will end his campaign depending on how he does in South Carolina. If he falls below his threshhold, then he will throw his support behind John McCain.
Mike Huckabee is incredibly weak. He actually pardoned and commuted the sentences of 1,000+ felons in Arkansas, and pushed for the release of a convicted rapist, Wayne DuMond because DuMond claimed that he found Jesus. DuMond then broke his parole by leaving Arkansas and proceeded to rape and kill two women in Missouri. Furthermore, the DNC (as I stated earlier) is drooling at the possibility of a Huckabee nomination because they view him as the weakest opponent they can face. They have publically stated that "Huckabee is the GOP's glass jaw - and we're waiting to break it". They also referred to him as an easy kill.

I Hereby reject the actions, statements and spiteful criticisms of a small group of individuals that has come out publicly against the Ron Paul 2008 Campaign Committee. We believe that these actions are anti-productive and detrimental to the motivation of every NEW Ron Paul supporter. We also feel that these statements and accusations can effectively push the fence sitters in the opposite direction. A bit of constructive criticism is one thing, however outright demanding people be fired and replaced by, "professionals," is down right insulting and we outright reject these demands.

The Ron Paul 2008 Campaign Committee has done an EXCEPTIONAL job !

With this in mind, remember that there are people waiting in the shadows to fan the flames of any controversy that may develop. United we stand, divided we fall. This REVOLUTION is going to take the combined force of ALL of our efforts, not just one or two factions. We will not at this time name names, or call people out.
Renew our grassroots campaign here and now.

We simply want to put those negative forces within the grass roots on notice. We will not tolerate you speaking in our name any longer.

God bless the LA Times for trying to bring some balance to the Ron Paul story.

This nation is a heartbeat away from an unprecedented economic CRASH--either that, or we will be 'bailed out' by a total inflationary destruction of the US dollar--which is already well under way...

Don't count Dr. Paul out, and keep following him. A financial crash in this country could instantly awaken more people to Dr. Paul's message. Too bad for all of us that it's so 'late in the game'...

Ron Paul has consistently stuck to his constitutional guns for 8 terms in Congress. The fact that we are in a terrible crisis of culture and economics--exacerbated by the Fed and nihilists like Greenspan--may sadly provide a wake-up call to many Americans in the near future.

The vacillations in candidate preferences throughout these early primaries betrays a profound sense of ambivalence in rank-and-file voters. Most of them are not understanding the details of the financial rot in this country, and yet they sense that things are dreadfully wrong.

With the economy, the markets, and the US dollar in such a precarious position as now, we never can know what 'exogenous shock' might suddenly propel Dr. Paul's message to the forefront of political discourse.

We are living in 'strange times'--and stranger things have happened. And so we wait. But we don't wait to strive for victory. We believe that our whole American way of life is at stake, so what have we got to lose?

Thanks so much for your thoughful coverage. Keep up the good work! This is one of the most balanced and thought-provoking pieces that I have seen in the MSM.

I guess from now on the mainstream news media won't be able to leave Ron Paul's pie slice of votes out of their news reporting. It seems they are taking great pains to do the Orwellian stunt of making him an "unperson" by simply leaving all reporting out as if he wasn't even there.
All the mainstream media is doing is accelerating their own deaths. Hopefully in 10 years nobody will remember CNN, ABC, CBS, FOX Jazeera, and MSNBC.

The only media we get out here in East Texas is AP(not more than 10 words of Dr Paul) Then the fox news on cable is mute ,so I was pleased to read your article. The media is so afraid of the truth, as then they will be exposed for who they are, a bunch of liars.I realize that the Bible is true and Jesus Christ is our personal Savior and hope . But we are to be good stewards and occupy till HE comes. The debt is 30,00 dollars for all :including my 5year old, 2 year old and yet to be born (in April) grandchildren. This is a discrace to allow this burden to be placed on our posterity. Ron Paul may be elected or not but we still need to do what is right and preach the truth. I have always supported Dr. Paul, May the Good Lord bless him.

I am Very thank full the owner of this blog. Becouse of this blog is very imformative for me.. And I ask u some thiing You make more this type blog where we can get more knowledge.

(Well, we'll be right here every day doing the same thing. Hope to see you back here often.)

Do you believe in free speech and freedom of the press?

Does the media censorship of the Ron Paul campaign concern you?

Well, if it doesn't - it should.

Think about it...

Ron Paul is looking for a brokered national convention - we need to get some of these basic ideas back....

Congressman Dr. Ron Paul may very well go down in history as a genuine American prophet. His view of the current state of American economics and defective foreign policy are playing out before our eyes. Politicians are to blame and new truths are becoming abundantly clear.

My blog has opened so many doors for me and has helped me land quite a few jobs. By being immersed in writing and showing initiative, having a blog has been a great platform and portfolio. And I would recommend to anyone looking to start or build a portfolio to have a blog.

« | 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...

About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
President Obama
Republican Politics
Democratic Politics



Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: