I guess I’ve known Ron Paul for a quarter of a century now, and I don’t remember how we met. My first memory of him is a quiet dinner on Capitol Hill, during the Reagan years. He told me with dry humor of being the only member of Congress to vote against some bill Reagan wanted passed. For Ron it was a matter of principle, and he was under heavy pressure to change his vote.
What amused him was that the Democrats didn’t mind his voting against it; all the pressure came from his fellow Republicans, professed conservatives, who were embarrassed that anyone should actually stand up for their avowed principles when it was unpopular to do so.
That was Ron Paul for you. Still is. The whole country is getting to know him now, and the Republicans still want to get rid of him. The party’s hacks, led by Newt Gingrich, have even tried in vain to destroy him in his own Texas district.
They’re right, in a way. He doesn’t belong in a party that has made conservative a synonym for destructive. George Will calls him a “useful anachronism” because he actually believes, as literally as circumstances permit, in the U.S. Constitution. In his unassuming way, without priggery or histrionics, he stands alone.
Read on: http://www.sobran.com/columns/2007/070612.shtml