The Paul people are smart and don’t lack for resources. He’s been the best consistently funded candidate in this race other than Romney, yet they’re using those resources in a way that helps Romney more than Paul. And that’s because they’re smart enough to know that a quirky near-octogenarian whose stage presence makes William Hung look like Cary Grant isn’t getting elected President of the United States—no matter how great some of his ideas may be.
The Paul campaign also doesn’t believe there’s any way Romney can win a general election. I know, because some of them have actually told me this. They believe Romney (like election losers Ford, H.W. Bush, Dole, and McCain before him) is a malleable establishment candidate that won’t fire up the conservative base, and his history of firing people as a successful businessman will be successfully exploited by the class warfare tactics of the Left.
The Paul campaign sees another four years of Obama as just the prescription for what the nation needs, because they believe the country needs a radical paradigm shift that it probably won’t be willing to embrace until there’s no other alternative but insolvency.
They might actually be right about that last part. It’s doubtful the country can afford another four years of Obama in the short run, but it’s also doubtful the country can afford to carry this much debt and phony money in the long run regardless of who is in the White House.
The Paul campaign is taking the long-term view, seeing the more charismatic, likeable, and socially-conservative Rand Paul as the superior standard-bearer for their revolutionary message. The movement surrounding Paul sees Ron Paul 2008-2012 as analogous to Barry Goldwater in 1964 and Rand Paul 2016 as analogous Ronald Reagan 1980. Goldwater’s defeated 1964 campaign was where Reagan’s conservative star first shined nationally, remember, laying the groundwork for future victory.
This is why the Paul campaign has become a stalking horse for Romney. It’s why they blistered Newt Gingrich in Iowa, and now they’re doing the same to Rick Santorum in Michigan. They want Romney to be the nominee and lose to set the stage for Rand Paul in 2016. If Iowa remains the first in the nation caucus state for that cycle Rand will be step ahead of other GOP future stars, because he’ll inherit his father’s outstanding organization in that state. Furthermore, one of Paul’s top political operatives was just elected chairman of the Republican Party of Iowa.
Regardless of whether you view this as a cynical or sound strategy, the Paul campaign owes its donors and supporters an answer as to why it applies Laissez-faire to the Romney campaign as well its fiscal philosophy.