Only one GOP candidate can defeat Obama: Ron Paul

By | April 27, 2011 | Opinion, Top Opinion Story

Earlier this month, President Barack Obama, unsurprisingly, announced his bid to keep the same job for four more years. Though the president hasn’t had exactly what you could call a smooth first term, he will be a formidable foe to the Republican nominee.

And just who might that Republican be?

Answer: nobody knows.

Many fringe candidates have either thrown their hat into the ring or have been talked about as potential candidates. The list is as long as it is yawn-worthy: Gary Johnson, the pro-choice, pot smoking former governor of New Mexico; Jon Huntsman, the U.S. ambassador to China under the Obama administration.

There’s Rick Santorum, who the last time we heard from him was busy losing a Senate seat in Pennsylvania by 18 points; Herman Cain, the Tea Party phenomenon that no Tea Partier has heard of; Tim Pawlenty, the former governor of Minnesota, whose campaign strategy has been to emulate George W. Bush’s policy positions.

There’s Mitch Daniels, the Indiana governor who would fit better in a classroom than in a political campaign; and John Bolton, the ultra-hawk Bush-era ambassador to the United Nations.

These candidates, frankly, do not have a chance.

There are a few who have legitimate opportunities to win the nomination, but every potential candidate has a fatal flaw that will doom him or her in a race against the politically adept Obama.

Newt Gingrich, the Clinton-era Speaker of the House, is likely running. His infidelities will be a big problem, but his biggest problem is that he’s likely the most unpopular Republican in America.

Sarah Palin probably won’t run, but she has a lot of support among social conservatives. Her problem is that she is incredibly partisan, which may result in notoriety and huge support from her base, but also results in incredibly high negatives. She won’t get independent support, which is needed in a general election.

Donald Trump should not be seen as a legitimate candidate, but alas, according to polls, he cannot be ignored. He likely is just trying to get attention, but he will not survive a vetting process by the media and the opposition. I suspect there is too much in his past.

The two who, according to polls and the media, have the best chance of winning are Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney, the two men who finished second and third behind John McCain the last time around.

Huckabee is very popular among Republicans and independents, and his Fox News show has kept him in the spotlight. However, he has proven to be gaffe-prone, and has not shown whether he can increase his support outside his evangelical base. Don’t bet on Huckabee.

The probable nominee is Romney. He is the most politically savvy of the bunch, and he certainly looks the part. However, even if he does win the nomination, he has one huge problem — Romneycare.

He will not be able to successfully combat Obama in the general election when the single biggest policy the president passed was based partly on legislation Romney passed as governor of Massachusetts.

Who then could actually challenge Obama? Who could actually bring change to the government?

The one man who could is Ron Paul.

Before you scoff and say that Paul could never get elected, know this: Paul does better than every candidate except Huckabee and Romney in the polls against Obama. According to Public Policy Polling, his favorability rating in Iowa, an important early caucus state, is better than every candidate except Huckabee. In New Hampshire, an important early primary state, his favorability rating is better than every candidate except Romney.

In one poll last year, he lost to Obama by just one point.

Paul, who announced the formation of an exploratory committee yesterday, is a serious candidate with serious ideas, whether it be opposing military intervention overseas, advocating a strong dollar or promoting a balanced budget.

Most of all, as his new book “Liberty Defined” makes plenty clear, he knows how to make America a nation of liberty once again.

“We must come to imagine liberty again,” says Paul, “and believe that it can be a reality. In order to do this, we do not need songs, slogans, rallies, programs, or even a political party. All we need is access to good ideas, some degree of idealism, and the courage to embrace the liberty that so many great people of the past have embraced.”

One way to embrace it is by supporting one of the great people of the present — Ron Paul.

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10 Responses to Only one GOP candidate can defeat Obama: Ron Paul

  1. Anonymous says:

    AMEN!!!! Ron Paul 2012!!!

  2. Philosotroll says:

    No doubt Tony decided to write this op-ed because of the discussion of Paul’s polling success. The CPAC straw poll a few months ago had Paul at 30% (Romney at 23%). However, it’s worth pointing out that if you poll Tea Partiers, apparently 59% say that they would not consider voting for Ron Paul. I doubt he has the pull to cross over in the mainstream conservative view either.

    Paul also has the impact of alienating independents and, generally, anyone who considers him/herself a moderate. I don’t see how running a hardline, isolationist conservative congressman (with a noted absence of support even within his own party) against a moderate democrat incumbent is even remotely a good idea. But I suppose that’s par for the course here.

  3. Ronald Ramo says:

    The Conservative Mind is an awesome book!

  4. Anonymous says:

    I like Paul’s idealism and sincerity, but I don’t see how he can win his party’s nomination. I think you may be right though, that he could fare well in a general election with his message, centered around smart money.

    And though I share his view on the income tax (for the bottom 90 percent, that is), and fiscal policy in general, which would deflate lots of the wasteful spending (but hurt the economy in the process, which he admits), I don’t like the idea that we’re not going to tax anybody and churches and rich people will give enough charity for the millions of impoverished.

    Actually, I recant my earlier statement that Paul can win any election. His ideals are long term rewards, and short term misery. Americans don’t like that. Americans are stupid, and not because they choose not to vote for Paul. At this time in history the wisest men in both parties (or no party) shun the political realm because they have acknowledged the political process for what it is: a farce. Politics, once upon a time, attracted the greatest men in the community, who were of the utmost character and were concerned with very little other than the general well-being of others — ie philosophers. Now it attracts dim-wits and degenerates, capitalists and hyper-capitalists, all while Americans watch with stupidity.

    Paul is a good man, though, and certainly one of the few politicians in either party that doesn’t make me want to vomit.

  5. Anonymous says:

    RON PAUL 2012! He can do it!

  6. I don’t get what republicans don’t understand, or can’t comprehend, about Ron being the ONLY republican with ANY chance of beating Obama! It’s not that hard to get the fact that Paul would not only have the republican base supporting him – he would ALSO be drawing large number of progressives, democrats, and most importantly – independents, mainly for his staunch anti-war, anti-corporate welfare stance that he takes!

    The only successful strategy will be to nominate Ron Paul, and then watch him destroy Obama. Ron Paul WILL pull the youth vote again, this time he’ll take many of Obama’s young supporters, as WELL as all individuals from the groups I mentioned above.

    Republicans – there are NO other republicans who could come close!

  7. James Moore says:

    Hell yes! Ron Paul 2012!

  8. Anonymous says:

    Where do I start? Tony’s assessment is very flawed. Conservatives don’t want someone with a socially liberal base. The CPAC straw poll is pandering. In 2008 Romney was neck to neck with McCain and Huckabee wasn’t far behind. Ron Paul has extremely liberal stances on domestic policies such as gay marriages, marijuana legalization and is equally liberal in foreign policy favoring non-intventionist foreign policy and immediate withdrawal of troops from not only combat zones but foreign bases as well.
    Here is Paul regarding a resolution endorsing Israel’s millitary actions,
    “Madame Speaker, I strongly oppose H. Res. 34, which was rushed to the floor with almost no prior notice and without consideration by the House Foreign Affairs Committee. The resolution clearly takes one side in a conflict that has nothing to do with the United States or US interests. I am concerned that the weapons currently being used by Israel against the Palestinians in Gaza are made in America and paid for by American taxpayers. What will adopting this resolution do to the perception of the United States in the Muslim and Arab world? What kind of blowback might we see from this? What moral responsibility do we have for the violence in Israel and Gaza after having provided so much military support to one side?”

    Paul stands in an awkward position. On Israel Obama is MORE conservative than Ron Paul in PRINCIPLE. There is no way someone who is more liberal on foreign policy than a democrat can win an election based in pleasing the GOP party base and shading

    • Ed Williams says:

      Ron Paul is right on the issues. Unfortunately he can’t market his way out of a paper bag, is not “America’s Next Top Model”, and he is bo-o-oring. Sound bite challenged ain’t gonna get it in today’s media environment, even of they did favor his message, which might happen some time after Hell freezes over…
      Cain & West are both awesome, credible conservatives, electable and worthy of our support. Palin, too, but perceived as flakey thanks to aforementioned media hack jobs.

    • I appreciate your honesty, here. At the same time, I don’t understand what is “conservative” about militarism. The comments that Paul are making here are very sound, indeed. Recall that in 1998 he predicted that our bombings in various countries (as well as our sanctions on Iraq, which reportedly killed as many as a million people, half of which were children who died of malnourishment) would lead to terrorism and retaliation. After 9/11, Osama Bin Ladin stated specifically that one of the reasons the 9/11 plot was developed was in response to the aforementioned events. I’m not sure if there is anything “liberal” about choosing not to intervene in other people’s affairs: that seems like a wise path to lead for any nation. It could be reasonably argued that our involvement in countries aborad has invited terrorism, and that we are actually less safe because of it. Our intentions may be good, but so far as wanting to get out of these bases and these messy wars: when do we begin to use our common sense and let go of our pride? This is beginning to look like hubris, is it not?

      Also, so far as gay marriage and marijuana go: Pauls believes those issues are to be left to the states. There is nothing in our constitution that allows it to make decisions on cultural affairs (like marriage), and nothing that allows for it to act as a regulator of people’s daily lives (marijuana use). People are allowed to drink soda pop, but that rot’s their teeth, and they’re allowed to drink alcohol (which is terrible in some situations). But- they can’t smoke weed. Even, in many cases, for medicinal purposes, right?

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