Links - Official Sites: Congressional Office, Ron Paul 2008 Presidential Campaign Committee, Committee to Re-elect Ron Paul
Unofficial Sites: Daily Paul, RonPaulHQ
Finances: FEC

In Brief - [**Announced candidacy on March 12, 2007; filed papers in Texas on Jan. 11, 2007 to establish a presidential exploratory committee]  Elected to Congress in 1996 and re-elected in the next five terms.  Libertarian party presidential nominee in 1988, finishing third with over 400,000 votes.  Medical practice.  Did not seek re-election to the House in 1984; unsuccessful candidate for Republican nomination for Senate.  Elected to Congress in 1978.  Elected to Congress in a special election in April 1976; defeated in Nov. 1976 re-election bid; also in 1976 founded the Foundation for Rational Economics and Education (FREE).  Unsuccessful candidate for Congress in 1974.  Medical practice in Brazoria County, TX; specialist in obstetrics/gynecology.  Obstetrics and gynecology training, University of Pittsburgh.  Flight surgeon in the U.S. Air Force.  Internship and one year of an Internal Medicine Residency at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, MI.  M.D. from Duke University Medical Center in Durham, N.C., 1961.  B.A. from Gettysburg College, 1957.  Born August 20, 1935 in Pittsburgh, PA.    [Timeline]

Second Presidential Campaign
On March 12, 2007 on C-SPAN's "Washington Journal," Dr. Ron Paul formally announced his second run for White House.  Almost twenty years earlier, in the 1988 general election, Paul was the Libertarian nominee.  Then 53 years old and a former congressman he obtained about 431,750 votes nationwide (about 0.47%), finishing a distant third behind Vice President George H.W. Bush (R) and Gov. Michael Dukakis (D) in what is now recalled as one of the less edifying presidential campaigns in recent decades.

Paul was returned to Congress in 1996 representing Texas' 14th Congressional District (South and Southwest of Galveston including Galveston) as a Republican, and he has been re-elected five times since by his contituents.  His congressional website notes that, "Dr. Paul never votes for legislation unless the proposed measure is expressly authorized by the Constitution."  "He continues to advocate a dramatic reduction in the size of the federal government and a return to constitutional principles," the site states.

Although he is now seeking the Republican nomination, Paul's is very much a libertarian philosophy and has changed little from that 1988 campaign.  The key word in Paul's lexicon is "freedom."  The title of his 1988 book?  Freedom Under Siege.  The title of his 2007 book?  A Foreign Policy of Freedom.  His congressional site lists six "freedom principles":

Early Successes
Paul was involved in a memorable exchange at the May 15 "First in the South" GOP debate in South Carolina.  A reporter singled out Paul as "the only man on the stage who opposes the war in Iraq."  In a follow-up  question, the reporter asked Paul if the 9/11 attacks had affected his views; Paul argued that, "They attack us because we've been over there; we've been bombing Iraq for 10 years."  Former New York City Mayor Rudy Guiliani then earned perhaps the biggest audience response of the night with his reaction to Paul's "extraordinary statement."  "I don't think I've heard that before, and I've heard some pretty absurd explanations for September 11th," Giuliani said.  Paul, however, did not retreat from his views.  Nine days later he held a press conference to suggest Giuliani had shown an "alarming" ignorance on foreign policy.

Paul's campaign has been doing well on the Internet.  On July 12 the campaign announced it had achieved 20,302 YouTube subscribers and 20,677 Meetup group members.  By comparison, according to Pauls campaign, the next leading campaign of either party was Sen. Barack Obama, the Democrat, with 8,807 YouTube subscribers and 5,327 Meetup group members.  In an online straw poll conducted by FreedomWorks from July 31-Aug. 2, Paul easily won with 9,297 votes (56.2 % of the 16,371 votes cast); former Sen. Fred Thompson, not even a declared candidate, finished second with 2,674 Votes (16.2 %).  On September 4 the campaign reported that, "There are currently 40,213 Ron Paul Meetup members while Barrack Obama, the candidate with the second best Meetup organization, has 5,801 members."

In the second quarter of 2007 Paul's campaign raised almost $2.4 million in contributions, the fourth highest amount among the Republican field.  Further, the campaign spent relatively little of that, putting Paul at third among Republicans in available cash on hand for the primary campaign.

Can Dr. Paul Deliver?
As a specialist in obstetrics/gynecology, Dr. Paul has delivered over 4,000 babies.  He will likely need a different sort of miracle if he is to gain the 2008 nomination of the Republican Party, and then go on to deliver the White House to the GOP for a third term.  Paul's decidely libertarian philosophy is at times is out of sync with the views of the broader Republican Party.  He is the second oldest "major" candidate running for president in 2008 (only former Sen. Mike Gravel (D) is older), and he has a very low key demeanor.  Nonetheless the type of campaign Paul is running makes it likely he will be able to continue to campaign long after other high profile candidates have dropped out.

Ron Paul.  June 2007.  A FOREIGN POLICY OF FREEDOM.  Lake Jackson, TX: Foundation for Rational Economics and Education.


See also:
Christopher Caldwell.  "The Antiwar, Anti-Abortion, Anti-Drug-Enforcement-Administration, Anti-Medicare Candidacy of Dr. Ron Paul."
New York Times Magazine.  July 22, 2007. 

Oct. 19, 2007-Washington Briefing 2007: Values Voter Summit.
July 6, 2007-After taping an appearance on ABC News' "This Week."
June 5, 2007-In the spin room following the CNN/WMUR-TV/Union Leader Republican Debate at Saint Anselm College, Manchester, NH.
May 24, 2007-Press conference to make the case that "50 years of interventionism in the Middle East has compromised the security of America."
March 20, 2007-Event to sign American Freedom Agenda's Freedom Pledge.

Total Receipts
Total Disbursements
Cash on Hand
Year to Date Totals
$  8,240,610.11
$  8,268,452.68
$  2,824,785.63
$  5,443,667.05
3rd Q 2007 (July 1-Sep. 30)
$  5,233,718.50
$  5,258,455.73
$  2,169,644.00
$  5,443,667.05
2nd Q 2007 (Apr.1-Jun. 30)
$  2,366,347.61
$  2,369,452.95
$     539,517.01
$  2,354,855.32
1st Q 2007 (Jan. 1-Mar. 31)
$     640,544.00
$     640,544.00
$     115,624.62
$     524,919.38

Note: Nov. 5, 2007 campaign press release:

"ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA—Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul beat all online primary fundraising records at 4:00pm today.  In 16 hours, the Ron Paul campaign brought in over $2.7 million in online contributions, making it the largest single-day online primary fundraising effort by a presidential candidate in United States election history.  Approximately 21,000 Americans made online donations thus far. Today’s efforts surpassed John Kerry’s record $2.7 million online fundraising efforts two days after the 2004 Super Tuesday primaries, and Republican John McCain’s $1 million online following the New Hampshire primaries in 2000."

On the Web
(June 10, 2007)
(May 14, 2007) (March 17, 2007) (Jan. 17, 2007)
unofficial sites

Copyright © 2006, 2007  Eric M. Appleman/Democracy in Action