Although this blog tends to be more about economics, investments, monetary policy, etc. (from a libertarian point of view), I do spend some time on politics. Unfortunately, the various governments, particularly the behemoth in DC, are so involved in our every day lives, we have to pay attention to what is going on as it affects our money and our lives in many ways. Since this is now political season with the Republican primaries coming and with a libertarian making waves in the race, I will continue to devote a decent amount of space to the Republican primaries and Ron Paul.
Ron Paul has the establishment frightened. He is gaining traction and has a good chance at winning the Iowa caucuses. I have learned of three celebrity endorsements just in the last few weeks that I was previously unaware of. Peyton Hillis, running back for the Cleveland Browns, is a big Paul supporter. Joe Rogan, host of the show Fear Factor, is a big Paul fan, as I learned during their appearance together on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno. The latest celebrity to show support for Paul is Kelly Clarkson, who is the first winner of American Idol.
The polls in Iowa show that it is a toss up right now between Romney and Paul. I think Ron Paul really needs to win Iowa. He then needs a strong second in New Hampshire.
There is going to be one more candidate who emerges. If Gingrich does poorly in Iowa, he is just about done. He has been slipping fast as more people learn about his pro-big government positions he has taken in the past (some very recently).
Santorum may do well in Iowa, but I don't see him doing anything after that.
I still don't think Huntsman will do anything unless something dramatic happens to Romney. If Romney does not have any major skeletons in his closet and he doesn't slip up in any major way, then the establishment will continue to back Romney over Huntsman.
So we are left with Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry. Their showing in Iowa will position one over the other. My guess is that Perry will win the battle and emerge as the third candidate. He will be an alternative to Romney for the fiscal conservatives who can't support Paul because of his anti-war message. Perry has money and he still has a decent backing.
Tuesday will tell us a lot. I think we will see this come down to a three-way race. It will be Romney, Paul, and one other. That one other will likely be Perry, but maybe Bachmann will give us a surprise.
Because Ron Paul is doing so well, the knives are coming out. We will continue to hear all of these false allegations that he is a racist, homophobe, etc. All we have to do is point out his positions. He is against the drug war which disproportionately hurts minorities. He wants to get the government out of marriage. He is in favor of individual liberty and he doesn't pick and choose winners and losers.
The next few months will be interesting. With many of the states not being "winner take all", this could last a while. If it ends up being a brokered convention with no clear winner, there is always the possibility of a late entrant. There is also a high probability that Paul will not win in that case as the establishment will do everything to keep him out.
For Ron Paul's sake, I hope he doesn't win the nomination. He and his family do not need that kind of abuse and stress. Regardless of what happens, the mood of the country is shifting. Ron Paul has huge support from young people and I think most of these people will be supporters of liberty for the rest of their lives. I want to see Paul do well just to expose more people to his message of liberty.
While the short-term may seem bleak, there is good reason to be optimistic for the future.