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Mitt Romney, Ron Paul Deal Could Include Rand Paul VP

The rumors that Republican presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney may select U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., as his running mate were given more credibility by sources from within Congressman Ron Paul’s campaign who claim a deal is taking shape.

Reports about a so-called “non-aggression” pact between Romney and Paul’s father, GOP presidential candidate U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tx., have been circulating for weeks. During the debates, Congressman Paul frequently attacked former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum and former Speaker Newt Gingrich, but often gave Romney a pass.

A new wrinkle is being added by insiders from the congressman’s campaign who claim the libertarian-minded lawmaker is thinking about the future of his movement—namely Rand as vice president—rather than winning the nomination.

From TIME:

Even as they tamp down rumors of a pact, Paul’s advisers concede that the friendship between Paul and Romney is the initial step toward a deal. And behind the scenes, discussions between the two campaigns — as well as initial discussions with the Santorum and Gingrich camps, according to one Paul adviser — are slowly taking shape.

(SNIP)

The Texas Representative might also be enticed, says campaign chairman Jesse Benton, by the prospect of serving as a presidential adviser, a Cabinet position for someone in his orbit or “perhaps a vice presidency.”

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Ron Paul: No Federal Relief for Tornado Victims

Standing by his libertarian principles, Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul reiterated his opposition to the Federal Emergency Management Agency when he said victims of the deadly tornadoes that hit Kentucky should not receive federal aid.

Last week, a series of storms across the South and Midwest caused injury, property damage and killed dozens, including small towns in Kentucky and southern Indiana.

The Texas congressman said the role of the federal government is to restore order and provide shelter through the National Guard, but that people affected by the storms should buy insurance instead.

“The people who live in tornado alley, just as I live in hurricane alley, they should have insurance,” he said.

Rather than federal funds, Paul argues there is plenty of generous and compassionate Americans who are willing to give after a disaster hits.

Ironically, Congressman Paul’s son, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., who has also been a libertarian voice in Congress, wrote a letter to President Obama on Monday morning urging him to support a request for a major disaster declaration for Kentucky that would result in federal funds being released.

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Ron Paul Downplays Rand Paul VP Rumors

Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul rejected a suggestion that GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney would ask his son, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., to serve as his running mate.

There has been growing speculation that the Romney and Paul campaigns have been cooperating with a possible offer of the vice presidency to Kentucky’s junior Senator down the road. When WFPL asked Sen. Paul about the prospect, he said “it would be an honor to be considered” and didn’t shut the door the the rumors.

But Congressman Paul dismissed the speculation after GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum suggested Paul and Romney were colluding.

“I think the media has fed on that because they keep saying ‘Is there a deal, is there a deal?’” Paul told Politico. “Obviously not. He wouldn’t do it, I wouldn’t’ do it.”

In a recent interview, Romney has also downplayed the rumors.

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Campaigning for Dad, Rand Paul Slams Romney, Santorum

Joining his father, U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tx., on the Republican presidential campaign trail, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., ripped Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney as too liberal to defeat President Barack Obama in a general election.

The father and son duo are on the trail in Iowa, where Congressman Paul has surged and is considered a “rock star” for his libertarian views. According to the final poll released by the Des Moines Register, Congressman Paul is statistically tied with Romney and could pull of an upset.

Campaigning in Iowa, Sen. Paul pulled no punches about his father’s opponents.

From Politico (h/t PageOneKentucky):

On CBS’s “The Early Show,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said of Santorum, “On economic issues, like foreign aid — he’s voted for foreign aid repeatedly, he’s voted to double the size of the Department of Education. Old-school Reagan Republicans don’t believe in the Department of Education — Rick Santorum voted to double the size of the Department of Education.”

Moving on to Mitt Romney, the Kentucky senator said the former Massachusetts governor, too, would not be strong enough to beat the president.

“He supported the linchpin of ‘Obamacare’ — the individual mandate — and he supported the bank bailout,” he said. “All of these things wrapped together don’t make Romney a good opponent for Obama, either.”

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Political Speculation Says Ron Paul Bid Could Give Rise to Rand Paul Presidency

A piece in the U.S. News & World Report speculates the presidential campaign of U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tx., could pave the way for his son, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., to run for the White House in the coming years.

The article points out Congressman Paul came in second in the Iowa straw poll and is above 10 percent in two prominent polls, which it estimates might give Paul the younger a chance in a future presidential contest.

From U.S. News & World Report:

David Boaz, executive vice president at the libertarian Cato Institute…emphasizes that it is too early to know whether freshman Rand Paul will succeed in the Senate—he’s been there less than a year—or what the political world will look like by 2016 or 2020.

But he suspects the younger Paul could have a better chance than the elder if he decides to dip his feet in a presidential race, particularly since he has already won a statewide campaign, while his father’s wins so far have been in a relatively safe congressional district.

“People have a sense that Rand Paul has rounder edges than his father,” Boaz says, adding that the younger Paul has picked his battles, focusing mostly on the deficit and federal spending. Like his father, he has advocated auditing the Federal Reserve, but the elder Paul has also called for an end to the Fed altogether. “He is going to be perceived as closer to the center of the Republican Party than his father has been.”

Beyond the far-fetched analysis based on the transfer of the family name, the piece is at least anchored by an observation that while Kentucky’s junior Senator is recognized as a principled Tea Party favorite, he hasn’t proven to be an effective legislator yet.

It notes that if the anti-government wave of the Tea Party continues to rise it’s a possibility, but observers point out Sen. Paul has not mastered the maneuvers of the Senate in his freshman year either.

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Paul Duo Hit Iowa

Taking a road trip to Iowa, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., joined his father, U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tx., on the presidential campaign trail Wednesday to enliven supporters leading up to the August 13 straw poll.

Congressman Paul is making his third attempt at the presidency, but this is the first time his Sen. Paul has joined his father on the 2012 election bid. The father and son congressional duo spoke to a crowd of about 50 people during a meet and greet in the city of Waterloo, where Kentucky’s junior Senator told the audience that both parties need to compromise to bring government spending down.

“Democrats have to admit that entitlements and welfare need to be reformed,” Sen. Paul said.  “Social spending needs to go down and Republicans need to admit that military spending needs to go down. They say the tea party won’t compromise—we will compromise.”

Oh, and the rest of the Paul family is coming too. Almost three dozen of them.

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Ron Paul Retiring From Congress

Focusing solely on his third presidential bid, U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tx., announced Tuesday he will not seek re-election for a 13th term in the House of Representatives.

Observers contend Paul, who is the father of U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., is an excellent fundraiser who would have easily retained his seat despite redistricting, but the 75-year-old congressman felt it was time to move on and put his energy into one last bid for the White House.

“I felt it was better that I concentrate on one election,” Paul told a Texas newspaper. “It’s about that time when I should change tactics.”

From Politico:

The retirement will take the country’s most prominent libertarian voice out of Washington, after years of redefining conservative politics. Opposing increases in the debt ceiling, supporting a more isolationist foreign policy, abolishing the Fed — all longtime Paul mainstays that would have been laughed off only a few years ago — are now well within the Republican mainstream. And it provides yet another signal that Paul plans to take a more intense approach to the 2012 campaign — he’s already stepped up his presence on the trail in Iowa and New Hampshire — adding to a strong fundraising operation that raised $4.5 million in the second quarter.

(SNIP)

Paul served five terms in the House before retiring ahead of the 1984 election. He ran for president as the Libertarian Party candidate in 1988, then returned to Congress in 1996, where he grew into the leading voice of libertarian politics in Washington and a harbinger of policy positions that have moved into the mainstream. And he’s developed a fiercely devoted if narrow following, along with much of the credit for seeding the tea party movement.


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Congressman Paul Debates “Obama” on Fox News

In a bizarre appearance on the Fox Business Channel, Republican presidential candidate and U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tx., joined host John Stossel for a mock debate with an impersonator of President Barack Obama.

Stossel insinuates the fake debate will foreshadow the 2012 Presidential campaign, but it’s unclear what this is supposed to accomplish other than more mocking of Paul’s candidacy.

Check it out:

It certainly doesn’t make Paul appear presidential. Also, is the faux Obama in blackface? I can’t tell.

UPDATE: If you’re scratching you’re head about this, particularly the impersonator, then you’re not alone. This is just, weird.

Much like Paul’s libertarian views, which excite conservatives and progressives alike, it’s always a little difficult to figure out what he’s doing and why he’s doing it.

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Ron Paul Launches Presidential Campaign

For the third time, outspoken U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tx., is running for president.

From the National Journal:

Sources close to Paul, who is in his 12th term in the House, said he will unveil an exploratory presidential committee, a key step in gearing up for a White House race. He will also unveil the campaign’s leadership team in Iowa, where the first votes of the presidential election will be cast in caucuses next year.

Paul, 75, ran as the Libertarian Party candidate in 1988, finishing with less than one half a percent of the vote. After more than a decade as a Republican congressman, Paul gave it another shot in the 2008 presidential election, gaining attention for being the only Republican candidate calling for the end to the war in Iraq and for his “money bomb” fundraising strategy, which brought in millions of dollars from online donors in single-day pushes.

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Congress Won’t See Third Paul

Ending all speculation, the son of U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tx., and brother of U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., ruled out a run for a soon-to-be-vacated Senate seat.

Texas physician Robert Paul told students at the University of North Texas last week that he isn’t interested in running for public office—yet.

From Politico:

“I think the biggest thing I have that’s similar to my dad is that I’m honest,” he said. “I’m never going to say I won’t ever run for office, but I think running for Senate probably is not going to happen this time.” He added: “I think about it all the time. That doesn’t mean I have plans to do it.”

Last week, though, Paul was singing a slightly different tune, telling the Star-Telegram that he was “very happy as a physician” but has “a lot of interest in the debt” and suggesting that he might run.

There already are more than half a dozen Republicans who have declared that they’re running for Hutchison’s seat. Some already have raised substantial amounts of money and, unlike Paul, have held other elected offices.

Drats!

My hopes for a reality television program featuring the Paul family’s adventures in Washington  still has a chance though. Cross your fingers.