Opinion: Ron Paul’s Legacy Deserves Better Than ‘2012 Spoiler’
United States Representative Ron Paul of Texas, known best for his libertarian views, showed his superstar status on Sunday at a Paul Rally in Tampa, Florida near the Republican National Convention site. The Paul gathering brought nearly 10,000 of his supporters together at the University of South Florida’s Sun Dome in Tampa.
The reason Paul spoke on Sunday at his own rally rather than having a slot in the Republican National Convention being held through Thursday of this week, is because he refuses to speak by the Republican National Committee’s rules. He has refused the Committee’s requirements which included the submission of his speech to the Committee for its approval as well as giving a full-endorsement to the Republican’s chosen candidate, Mitt Romney.
While it’s understandable that Ron Paul is upset with the Republican Party’s recent actions regarding his delegates in a couple of states where he believes his delegates should still be considered in his count, the question for Paul and his supporters is about the future – not the present.
What is the outcome of Paul’s current stance with the Republican Party to be if Mitt Romney wins the election? Worse yet, what is the outcome of Paul’s current stance throughout history to be if Barack Obama wins the election?
If Romney survives and wins the election on November 6 in spite of Ron Paul’s dissention, Paul and his causes ultimately look uneventful in the entire scheme of the 2012 election – as well as being remembered as possible spoilers. If Obama wins the election, Ron Paul looks like a complete spoiler and – though unfair to him and his supporters – will likely have the “spoiler of the 2012 election for the Republicans and Mitt Romney” label as his legacy.
Think about alleged election spoilers of the past like Ross Perot, Strom Thurmond, George Wallace, and John Hospers who were third party candidates who were powerful enough to sway elections. Very little is remembered about what spoilers have wanted to accomplish for the country, but it’s difficult to find anybody who doesn’t remember that these people altered the election results in their time. Being a spoiler becomes one’s legacy above any and all good they’ve done or attempted to do for the country.
With all the good Ron Paul has done, is doing, and will do for the United States, the man and his supporters have not learned the benefits of losing graciously and of stepping aside for the good of the ultimate goal – defeating the unwanted candidate.
Ron Paul, 77, will likely not be in another presidential contest – ever. This was likely his best shot at ever being taken seriously as a presidential candidate – and he definitely was taken seriously. He deserves to conclude his presidential ambitions with the most dignity he has ever received from the nation who embraced him in this election campaign as the serious contender he has been.
It is hoped that Ron Paul can find it in his personal character to not practice the actions of past election spoilers so that his legacy in terms of being a presidential candidate in the United States will be a total positive for him. By saying that he cannot fully support the Republican Party’s choice and raising the discontentment of his supporters, he is on the verge of being best remembered as the presidential election spoiler – or attempted spoiler – of 2012. With his good hard work as well as strong love and care for this country, he deserves to have his desires for this country carry on – not the legacy of a political spoiler. Ron Paul’s impact on the future of America and how the nation remembers his involvement with the GOP presidential campaign process of 2012 is his and his alone.
About Scott Paulson
Scott Paulson writes political commentary for Examiner.com and teaches English at a community college in the Chicago area. The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of CBS Local.