Ron Paul fans, Ralph Nader wants your attention
In the wake of the decision by the 72-year-old Paul to, via his website, officially declare an end to his presidential quest, the 74-year-old Nader showed a political agility that has not always marked his many, many runs for the White House. Today, he released the following statement:
"Ron Paul was a lightning rod for millions of Americans against the war in Iraq and for the protection of personal liberties that the two major parties have turned their back on -- by continuing to support the illegal criminal war and the PATRIOT Act.
"Now that Dr. Paul has formally withdrawn his candidacy for the G.O.P. nomination and is no longer seeking the Presidency, there is a clear choice for those who want to support a candidate who will stand up against the war and stand up for personal liberties and privacy that have been trampled by the notorious, misnamed, PATRIOT Act.
"The people want the next President to immediately withdraw our soldiers and corporate mercenaries from Iraq in the safest manner possible.
"I would veto any attempt to extend the so-called PATRIOT Act or anything else that came across my desk that was designed to circumvent the civil liberties of the American People.
The PATRIOT Act grants excessive power to the government to abuse civil liberties through wiretaps, monitoring internet usage, authorized 'sneak and peek' of our homes, and forces libraries to turn over records of the books read by their patrons -- and those abuses of power have been used repeatedly by Bush and his Justice Department.
We need more politicians, like Dr. Paul, who are not afraid to stand up for our civil liberties."
Nader isn't quite as assertive on another of Paul's prime issues, the Federal Reserve Board.
Paul, much to the delight of many of his supporters, has pushed for wiping the board off the face of the earth; Nader's focus has been on prodding it to do its job with greater vigilance and more openly.
-- Don Frederick
Photo: Nick Wass / Associated Press