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He’s been running some pretty rough ads in Iowa attacking The Professor. What Gives?

During 1996, Paul was re-elected to Congress after the most difficult campaign he had experienced since the 1970s. Because Republicans had gained control of both houses of Congress in the 1994 election, Paul entered the campaign hopeful that his Constitutionalist policies of tax reductions, terminating federal agencies, and curbing the U.N. would have more support than during the past.[57] The Republican National Committee emphasized instead encouragement of Democrats to switch parties, as Paul’s primary opponent, incumbent Greg Laughlin, had done during 1995. The party endorsed Laughlin, including assistance from House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Texas Governor George W. Bush, and the National Rifle Association. Paul responded by running newspaper advertisements quoting Gingrich’s harsh criticisms of Laughlin’s Democratic voting record 14 months earlier.[25] Paul won the primary with assistance from baseball pitcher, constituent, and friend Nolan Ryan (as honorary campaign chair and advertisement spokesman), as well as tax activist Steve Forbes[8] and conservative commentator Pat Buchanan (both of whom had had presidential campaigns that year).

(via Wikipedia)

The ads are pretty personal and seem to indicate that Paul is holding a grudge, but I fail to see how Nominee or even President Romney helps Paul. During most of the 2000s, nobody had a fig’s worth of interest in Ron Paul’s ideas. That only started after the Bush Administration had completely discredited itself and conservatives began to be receptive to an alternative viewpoint on the right. The Obama Administration has helped Paul’s reach broaden as well, some of his ideas have become more accepted among Republicans, and he’s been adding support for himself as well. But a President Romney would inevitably stall, if not reverse Paul’s gains by consolidating Republican support and running conventional GOP policies with some measure of competence. OTOH, another Obama term would probably help Paul, and a Gingrich candidacy (or, God forbid, presidency) would have to do the same, as Gingrich reprises many of the failed Bush policies that Paul made his rep inveighing against with far less competency. I don’t hate Ron Paul–I think he’s mostly a nationalist crank with admittedly a few redeeming characteristics–but the guy is such a narcissist as a political strategist. He can’t help himself.

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