Ron Paul on the Tea Party Movement, CPAC 2010, Ron Paul 2012

Date: 1/8/2010
Show: Anderson Cooper 360
Channel: CNN


Anderson Cooper: Palin has reportedly decided to skip the upcoming CPAC conference, which is a major event for conservatives, especially those seeking the White House. Cambridge, Governor Bobby Jindal and others have been invited to speak. Palin was asked to be a speaker, but turned it down. At the same time, Palin has agreed to be the paid keynote speaker at the first ever National Tea Party Convention. That’s taking place next month in Nashville. She is apparently putting a political observer, sending a message to her party and her base. But those messages are being interpreted differently, of course, by different groups.

With us now is Ron Paul, Republican congressman and former presidential candidate. Congressman, I appreciate you being with us. Well, what do you make of Sarah Palin’s decision to not go to CPAC, but instead to go to this first ever Tea Party Convention?

Ron Paul: I don’t think I can make a whole lot out of it. I guess we’ll have to wait and see what happens. I’ve been invited to CPAC, I’m going to attend that. And I think that’s a good function for a conservative Republican. But exactly what she is up to, I don’t know. And once you get paid for something, it’s a little bit different. As a member of Congress I don’t get paid, so I make my decisions in a different manner.

Anderson Cooper: What do you make of the Tea Party? I mean, it’s clearly in a very short amount of time grown, gotten a lot of attention. What do you make of it as you observe it?

Ron Paul: I think it’s very interesting and I think it’s very, very important. I feel in many ways that our campaign in the presidential race was part of this because it was more-or-less the first Tea Party. That was the day they raised so much money for me. And it looks like what has happened is a lot of people love the tool; the tool of the Tea Party. I don’t think it’s a monolith in any way. I think there are a lot of different groups coming together trying to get out in front. They know there are a lot of people out there that want change and they want different government, they’re angry at republicans and democrats. And certain individuals are trying to get out in front and lead this charge.

But I don’t think it represents one single group of people. For instance, when I go to the college campuses, I’m looking for groups to come out and I want to talk to them about personal liberty, I want to have them talk about sound monetary policy, and I emphasize foreign policy a whole lot. And some of these tea parties will emphasis and talk about that, but some of them totally ignore it. But I’m more choosey about what I want to do because the things that I’ve been talking about for 30 years, and especially these last 2 years are important to me and I believe sincerely they’re important to the country. So I’m going to keep pursuing those goals, and they don’t fit neatly into every package. I mean everybody that attends a tea party isn’t going to necessarily say, “Oh, I agree with everything that Ron Paul says” and I think that might be true of Palin or anybody else. And I think it’s too early to sort all this out.

Anderson Cooper: I thought one of the things that was so fascinating and important about your race for president was a lot when you talked to your supporters. There were people who were maybe before Democrats or Independents or Republicans, it seemed to be kind of putting aside the party and it was really about ideas and specific issues. And there is this energy and I do get the same sense from talking to people who go to Tea Party rallies, that it’s making people who haven’t even been involved in politics in a very extensive way, but who are mobilizing in a way. Do you think they can become a third party? I mean there are those who are saying they are now Tea Party candidates and they hope that it can become a viable third party. Do you think that’s possible?

Ron Paul: It’s always possible, it’s not likely because of all the laws biased against third parties. But I think you’re right; the people are coming in, joining in and they don’t that necessarily all have the same views. And I think that’s what’s happening, it’s being sorted out. I don’t think you can have one party. But, you know, I’ve tried to promote the ideas of liberty as an Independent and Libertarian. And it’s very, very difficult, because you don’t get on the debates. You don’t get coverage. You don’t get on ballots. And we have a very biased system. We don’t have a real democratic system because many of us have come to the conclusion – and this Tea Party movement would agree with me on this – that they don’t get a fair shake with the two party system and they’re tired of Republicans and they’re tired of Democrats. And therefore the two parties are the same.

I’ve been complaining for all along. They really don’t have a different foreign policy. I mean, how did the foreign policy change after Obama? We were supposed to see some changes. How does it change on personal liberties? No. I mean, we still have big government spying on Americans. Has monetary policy changed? I think we’re making a little inroads there with my efforts on auditing the Fed, but basically the leaders of both parties support the big issues and I think the American people are catching on because they’re facing a bankruptcy. They know the federal government can’t deliver the goods anymore and the people are getting worried no matter which spectrum they’re coming from. They know that the federal government is not able to deliver the goods anymore.

Anderson Cooper: Do you see anyone on the Republican side that excites you for 2012? And if not or even if you do, are you planning to run again?

Ron Paul: Well, I think it’s too early. I haven’t said no, but I don’t have any plans to do it. You know what kind of a job that is for somebody. I’m just going to take a year at a time. I’m up for re-election but I feel like I do the same thing steadily, constantly over a 30 years period, promoting one issue: personal liberty. And to me that’s what America was all about. The Constitution, limited government, property rights. And that’s where our prosperity comes from. So I think it’s such a great philosophy, and there is such a need now to go back to the beliefs that we once had. And that, to me, means you have to change foreign policy. And you have to change the concept of personal liberty and the free market. And that’s what I work on and I do it in the party and out of the party and education. But ultimately I have a lot more respect for education than I do for the politicians. Politicians really don’t change the world. It’s only the ideas that change the world, and that’s what I work in mostly.

Anderson Cooper: I ask a lot of potential candidates that question about whether they’re going to run again. And they always have a cutesy answer. I think you have the most honest answer when you said “I haven’t said no,” you’re thinking about it, but you haven’t made up your mind. I appreciate it. Congressman Paul, I appreciate you being on the program. Thank you.

Ron Paul: Thank you, good to be with you.


  • gene willis

    leave social security alone and unemployment.stop the fed spending and get rid of people who want to hurt the people of this nation.even if it’s a not elect those who want to distroy peoples lives and security.

  • Lindsey

    I understand that Ron Paul will be speaking at the CPAC convention. Why didn’t he choose to go to the Tea Party convention in Nashville like Sara Palin? I feel that he would be better off in Nashville.

    • longshotlouie

      We need representation @ CPAC.

    • Because he didn’t want to be percieved as just a devisive person! He also believes that every person in this country has a right to question their government!

      • I’m sure he would’ve loved to speak at the convention in Nashville!

  • zaher ocsi

    Our country founded as a Republic? That is clear. Some stupid anti American progressive Presidents in the early 1900 hundreds start to change to democracy. That was the begining of the groing fed. goverment. In a way democracy is a one party dictatorship. Mr. Paul said, this two party is same!!! So they don’t let a third or independent party take over the leadership of this once a great nation. Democracy depends on diferent groups. Grups like, the unions, people on welfare and foodstamps , free or cheap housing, and any other goverment subsidize program. Unfortunatly thanks to this two party, those groups that I mention before groing fast, with a big big help from the teachers union. China is the bigest democracy today, with a one party system, the communist party.I’m sorry becouse my not perfect english,but I came from a nation witch was a democracy, under the communist party dictatorship. What I unable to understand, how any normal American wants to go that way???? God Bless you all

    • Unfortunately Zaher! I am on food stamps,welfare, and section 8! I am embarssed to say! Because the job market is so screwy! I hope that I will be able to get out of these programs! Be able to make a living wage without always depending on the Government!
      Also I deffinitely have lost respect for Pat Robertson for making those Ignorant comments about as if it were the Haitins fault for causing the earthquake!

      • NO! I’m sorry! The more government takes over on everything the less money we save! We SPEND, SPEND, SPEND by barrowing money from other contries to expect a different result! That is laughable! “We the people” should vote on these issues! We are also becoming a 3rd world country with big government in the way! I am glad that the Tea Party movement is spreading their message! I am not proud of being on welfare! I ashamed! & NO I DID NOT VOTE FOR OBAMA! Because he’s 100% Pro-Government and 0% Liberty!

      • zaher ocsi

        I’m not talking about those who lost their jobs, and taking food stamps temporary. We have millions who lazy to work, and getting almost everything for nothing. That old P. Robertson
        I think he lost his mind. Wasn’t normal what he said.
        God bless, and good luck for your future

        • Yeah! Now I understand! There are also some people in America who are underemployed and still living on food stamps, welfare, and section 8.! Which I agree that shouldn’t have to be the case as well! Those who live on food stamps, welfare, and section 8, & always expect the government to make things better are already if not already are in for a rude awakening! I don’t want this country to be so dependent on government, a welfare state,nor a war state either! Obama proposed to add a tax on these institutions that are doing the right thing by giving our money back! The tax on these institutions is a very bad idea! Because businesses that are doing the right thing shouldn’t have to be taxed!

          • Pat Robertson should resign or at least apologize! Rush Limbaugh said the same thing! He should resign or apologize!
            I don’t listen to neither of these men! I consider myself an Independent!

        • Thanks Zaher! God Bless You as well! & that your future is bright!

  • Also! My heart goes out to the people of Haiti! & wishing them a full recovery!

  • dan

    Check this out:
    From an Israeli website:
    I am sick and tired of the fact that everyone that is against a blind continuation of the “War on Terror” being labeled as anti- Semitic. Ron Paul is a brave crusader for freedom and liberty and I have never heard a word come out of his mouth that is even slightly of anti-Semitic racist nature.
    The fact one wants to stop the war in Iraq doesn’t make him anti-Israel or anti-Semitic
    The fact one wants to stop the war in Afghanistan doesn’t make him an anti-Israel or anti-Semitic
    The fact one wants to stop foreign aid doesn’t make him an anti-Israel or anti-Semitic
    The fact one is for a policy of non intervention doesn’t make him an anti-Israel or anti-Semitic.
    The fact one wants Israel to leave the West Bank doesn’t make him an anti-Israel or anti-Semitic
    I am a Jewish Israeli so I fell quite sure that no one can blame me of being anti-Semitic and I say to you very loud and clear: I support Ron Paul !!

    • dan
    • RIGHT ON Dan! All this crap that somehow Ron Paul is a racist! He is not infact he wants both countries to make a treaty! & We shouldn’t be having our money spent on these two pointless wars! He has also gave praised Martin Luther King Jr. for standing for for what we all believe in! & BTW! I am a black man who don’t like Obama! Because of his false promises and flawed policies! I label him as I have labeled Bush! “WAR MONGUERS”! & Obama claims to be a so-called community organizer and he can fix the economy!
      I didn’t vote for him nor McCain! Because I knew they were both phony from the beginning!



    by Steffan M. Bertsch

    Ladies and Gentlemen of the Senate, I have been given an ominous task. I don’t represent any particular district, as do the other house managers. I have been asked to present the closing argument for all the Sons and Daughters of Liberty, a dying breed, but one that has many constituents within the borders and beyond the shores of the United States of America. This is perhaps the most weighty job I have ever undertaken.

    Much eloquence has been spoken from both sides of the argument for and against the impeachment of the president. Such has been the adroitness of the presenters, that I figured to adequately represent Maid Liberty, I must call upon the Greatest Wisdom, the Highest Truth, the Truest Honor. In attempting to reach such lofty goals, I remembered that Hillary Clinton was reported to have had conversations with Eleanor Roosevelt, so I thought I might try to follow suit.

    Since the question before the Senate is one of grave constitutional significance, I reflected upon which Founding Father I could speak with to answer the question of whether perjury, witness tampering, and obstruction of justice, all for personal gain, rose to the level of high crimes and misdemeanors and therefore mandated a dismissal of the president.

    My first thought was Thomas Jefferson, but, alas, he was in Paris when the Constitution was written. I also dismissed calling upon Benjamin Franklin because he was ever so close to death by the time the Constitution was ratified. As I ticked off the list of some of my favorite Americans, such as Patrick Henry and Richard Henry Lee, I had to scratch them because they opposed the Constitution out of fear that a despotic federal government would arise from the document. I feared all I would hear from one of them would be a resounding, “I told you so!”

    Then, an inspiration hit me . . . I knew who to contact . . . but, was uncertain as to how. What would be the first step in conjuring up a Founding Father? As I contemplated this problem, I went into a deep trance . . . or did I fall asleep? Regardless, my recollection of the events is as clear as if I had been fully awake.

    This is how it happened, the strange event, so powerful was it that I need not follow my colleagues and make comparisons of Clinton to Marlon Brando in The Godfather, or allude to literary figures like the character in The Prince by Machiavelli, or even compare Clinton to some Roman emperor, such as Caligula. I would experience the real thing . . .take my answer right from a Founding Father . . . there would be no metaphors or similes for me!

    As I lay in an odd state of stupor, where I was alert, yet also uncertain of whether I was conscious or having a lucid dream, concentrating with all my energy upon the Founding Father I had chosen to assist in the troublesome task, I heard a loud knock, arose, and answered the door.

    Standing on my porch was a diminutive man, nearly a foot shorter than I, with unruly hair whose appearance astonished me. His clothing fit tightly about him, with frills on his sleeves and collar flowing out from his burnt-orange coat. As I stood dumbfounded and wondering what this costumed clown was doing at my door, I looked into his eyes and recognized an intelligence beyond any I have ever encountered, so I invited him into my house.

    “What may I do for you?” I asked, to which he replied that I had sent for him. I scratched my head, and said I doubted that very much. He laughed and said that he was actually a substitute for whom I had requested. Then it hit me, I had requested the assistance of John Jay, the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, but he was apparently not available. I introduced myself and inquired as to who was in my home.

    “James Madison, at your service.”

    Nothing could have shocked me more than his introduction. I had always known Madison to have been such a giant of an intellect that I had wrongly assumed that such a magnificent mind could not be packaged in such a tiny body, and I told him so. His response did nothing to allay my amazement.

    “My mind is smaller than a mustard seed,” said he, “but it is tied to the greatest network of intelligence that you could imagine.”

    Wanting dearly to explore the metaphysical implications of his comment, but now remembering my task at hand, I changed the subject. “Sir, could you assist me in a grave task? The House of Representatives has impeached our 42nd president, and I have been asked to give a closing argument at the impeachment trial in the Senate.”

    Madison’s cheerful eyes turned black as he contemplated what I had said.

    “How dark it must be in America that you are impeaching the president!” he exclaimed.

    “Oh, the president’s defenders say it is not dark at all, but that we, the prosecutors have too dark a view of the republic. They point to many things, claiming the economy has been great under this president, that there are few wars, that the people love the man, so, his defenders say, he should not be removed.”

    “What wrong is your president charged with?” asked Madison.

    I laid out the details, the allegations of perjury, of obstructing justice, and concluded with this question: “So, Mr.. President, you were the chief author of the Constitution, the writer of 29 of the Federalist Papers which you signed ‘Publius,’ and a Founding Father of this republic. Do perjury and obstruction of justice under these sordid circumstances arise to a high crime or misdemeanor as contemplated in Article II, Section 4 and mandate the president’s removal from office?”

    The little man fell into a chair, dropped his head into his palms, and wept. His tears were so large that they poured through the crevices of his hands and dripped onto his pant legs. He sniffed. He coughed. And, he cried for several minutes before looking at me with tear-soaked eyes. “Is . . . is . . . that what America’s come to? Has she fallen that far?”

    I nodded.

    He wheezed again, and then, miraculously, this little man who had just been bawling jumped to life. His eyes dried, his countenance lightened, and he was ready. “If that’s what you’re about, we better get to work,” he said. “How is the vote estimated to go.”

    “Well, we now have fifty states, so there are one hundred senators.” This piece of information seemed to cheer Madison up and he showed a tinge of pride in his expression. “It’s going to break down on party lines, fifty-five Republicans will probably vote to convict. The forty-five Democrats will vote to acquit.”

    “What!?” he screamed. “Democrats? Where did a party get a name like that?”

    I gulped. “Well, you see, the media and the history books all tell that this country is a democracy, so the party is named to signify the followers of a democracy.”

    “No!” shouted Madison. “We had Democratic-Republicans in my day. But, Democrats! No! Never! This is not a democracy! That is a base lie! We considered whether to form a democracy and rejected the concept flatly. Both democracy and monarchy were evaluated and smitten. This country is a REPUBLIC. Where in the Constitution is found the word ‘democracy’ I ask you? Nowhere, and I know, I wrote most of the document. This is terrible. Your people will perish for lack of knowledge.”

    I shrugged, and nodded.

    “Okay, let’s keep working. Do you have transcripts of the witnesses who testified in the trial?” asked Madison.

    “Well, no.”

    “Why not? How are we going to put together a closing argument if we don’t know the testimony?”

    “You see,” I stammered, “the Senate didn’t allow us to call a single witness into the trial.”

    Madison stamped his feet and screamed, “A trial with no witnesses! What kind of a mockery is going on in that infernal Senate?”

    I then explained the horrific rulings the Senate had made, how it had restricted us from prosecuting the president, explained the sham in its full ugliness.

    “This reminds me of the tragedy brought upon this republic when Chief justice John Marshall rigged the trial for that traitor, Aaron Burr. Which reminds me, what has the current Chief Justice been doing during this mock trial?”

    “Next to nothing,” I said. “He might as well be a puppet for the Senate doing their bidding.”

    “So, the Senate’s corrupt, as is the Supreme Court. Lucky there is still a House of the people.” Madison paced a moment, then looked out my window, before smiling almost gleefully. “I know just the answer for such a travesty of justice. We’ll cut it off right now! We’ll just have to notify the legislatures of those fifty states to recall the senators because of the sham that is ongoing.”

    I frowned.

    “Why so glum,” asked Madison. “I know it’s a lot of work, but after one state sees the light, they’ll all follow suit. We’ll have a whole new Senate in no time at all.”

    “The states don’t have any control over the Senate. In 1913, under the Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution, the members of the Senate are no longer elected by the legislatures of the various states, but instead, by popular vote of the people.”

    “No! No! No! You’ve got to be kidding. Did the people not read Federalist Papers 62 and 63? The greatest fear of everyone in my day was that the Senate would become an elite group of tyrants because their terms were six long years. The only check on this was that all senators were subject to recall by their state legislatures, so it was presumed that all senators would only do bidding that benefited the state they represented. Without this check, the federal power could destroy all of the states’ rights.”

    “It already has,” I admitted.

    “Tell me, does the president have much power today?” he asked, not seeming to hear my comment.

    “A great deal.”

    “How so?”

    “Well, he is commander-in-chief of the most powerful military on the earth. He commands the Navy, Marines, Air Force and the Army.”

    “I don’t know what a air force is, but do you have a standing army?”


    He ripped my copy of the Constitution from my hands and shouted, “Where does this document authorize a standing army?”

    I shrugged.

    “What other powers has he?”

    “He commands the federal police force, the FBI, the internal revenue officers, the IRS, the covert operations, the CIA . . .”

    “Stop! Where did he get these powers?”

    “I-I think mostly from the commerce clause, and the Sixteenth Amendment authorizing a tax on incomes.”

    Madison stared in disbelief. “The commerce clause? The commerce clause? And a tax on incomes! Don’t you realize that if you tax incomes that you have opened up your affairs to the government? Don’t you understand that such a tax violates every fiber of the Fourth Amendment? Don’t you realize that without a warrant sworn on probable cause that the government cannot look at your personal papers and records? Of course, from the sounds of it, who cares about oaths today . . . certainly not the current president.”

    “Oh,” I smiled. “The government and the IRS gets around the Fourth Amendment by declaring that the income tax is voluntary.”

    “That’s a relief,” said Madison. “So, people only pay the income tax if they want to do so.”

    “Not quite,” I said. “When a person neglects or refuses to pay the income tax, their property is seized and sometimes they are thrown in jail.”

    “Atrocious! How could you have let this happen! You have a virtual dictator in this president! You have built a monster!”

    I gulped. “It’s a little worse than that. He writes executive orders and thereby has legislative powers to do as he pleases.”

    “How?” Madison shoved the Constitution in my face. “Where does he have that power? Is there another that I need to know about?”

    “In 1933, the sitting president declared that the economic depression was so deep that it must be fought with all the powers a president would have in an actual state of war. Our Congress declared war on the depression and made the president omnipotent.”

    “But that was 65 years ago.” said Madison.

    “The War Powers Act has never been repealed. Since 1933, the presidents have all the war powers at their disposal, and they have used those powers to fight wars in Vietnam, in Iraq, in Korea, and many, many other countries without acquiring a formal declaration of war from Congress. We currently have troops and/or agents overtly or covertly stationed in over 100 nations doing mischief in many, and all done without declarations of war.”

    “Did nobody read the farewell address of General Washington? Did the General not warn us that wars would trouble everyone throughout the world and that our only defense against these wars was to isolate ourselves from them? To refuse to be a part of them?”

    I tried to smile, but couldn’t. “Mr. President, we have been suckered into many wars in the name of God. Our politicians always claim that God would never allow us to sit quietly by as our brethren are killed by tyrants.”

    “God?” asked Madison. “Which God?”

    “I thought there was only One.”

    “In a sense, you’re right. There is but One Creator, the Divine God of Love, Justice, Truth, Wisdom and Honor. But, there is another, a pretender, a fraud, a liar, a murderer, who goes by many names, but you probably know him best as Mammon, since your country seems to run on this…this commerce clause.”

    There was a long silence as I reflected upon what Madison had just said.

    I knew well which god would have created a fraudulent money system, a fraudulent tax system, a fraudulent war on the economy, a fraudulent Senate, a fraudulent trial of impeachment, a fraudulent involvement in Vietnam, a fraudulent war on drugs. I had to admit that the US of A no longer worshiped the God of our Founding Fathers, but instead followed Mammon. I breathed in quite deeply.

    Madison turned toward the door and began to let himself out. I stopped him and said, “Wait, do perjury and obstruction of justice rise to high crimes and misdemeanors?”

    Madison’s face flushed, and, again he ripped the Constitution from my hands. His eyes bulged as he exclaimed, “Under the original Constitution . . . Yes.”

  • Gregory DuBois

    I suggest Mr. Paul step of to the plate today and say, “Get the hate our of here. We are a Democracy”. Whetherthey wanna claim Republic or not, this place is a Democracy. If not, then stop telling other countries around the world that we are and sending our troops in harms way while saying we are.

    • arturo nocete

      Please correct your typos

    • History Teacher

      actually this is not a Democracy- the US is a Republic- get your facts straight before bashing people. I teach a US History class and have to pound this into my student’s heads because there is the perpetuating myth that we are a Democracy. Do we all vote on every issue or do we elect representatives? In a Democracy every citizen would vote on every bill and every law- Also, we have a contract between the citizens of each state and the federal government- the Constitution. These features plus the separation of power which functions as a system of checks and balances are how we differ from a direct Democracy. Ron Paul says we have a democratic system- buts its little ‘d’ democracy not capitol ‘D’ Democracy. The process of democracy or a democratic system denotes public participation in government. But our actual form of government is a Constitutional Republic.

      • Digitalman

        History Teacher… KUDOS to you!!!
        Eloquently and accurately stated. Republic… as was framed by our founders. Jefferson would be so proud! It is such a shame that many Americans today are misled and do not understand what American Government was, is, and really should be all about!
        it isn’t entitlements and bailout handouts or an overlord structure….

        • jones

          Honestly, I think the arguments about the names (republic vs democracy) are simply linked propaganda for the two parties.

          If so, is just more of the same thing.

          My view: the system is a representative democracy that governs a constitutional republic in which the power resides on the people and not in hereditary blood lines of families of ‘reptilians or illuminatis or robotics transhumans’.

          If you teach the kids the terms found everywhere with proper respect the issues are processed in an integrative approach, and they can underestand the core concepts, keep track of the names being changed, but not be fooled by misleading and fashionable terminology that is designed to enlist them in actions against their own best interest.

          • sean

            A representative democracy is different than a direct democracy. A direct democracy is what our founding fathers despised. If you actually knew your history, you would know that there were mob lynches, tarring and feathering, and other mob activities. This is called a direct democracy (When the people take the law into their own hands).. Thats when we set up a representative democracy which established a government and law. Later on we replaced the British Monarch with our own president. That’s what defined us as a Republic, free from tyranny (with an elected president)… We always had a split congress (representative democracy), even before we were an independent nation.

          • sean

            Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, and George Washington were all members of congress and they debated back and forth on matters similar today.. Nothing has changed. Our government was democratic back then and it still is now. They even had to get the votes to become independent just like our government has to get the votes today.. Of course everyone voted for independence but there were lots of members against it… I think youre confused on the definition of a democracy history teacher. You are confusing a democracy of the public against a democratic government.

          • sean

            You should stop teaching your students things you don’t know. Just look at a dictionary..

            Democracy- government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them OR BY THEIR ELECTED AGENTS UNDER A FREE ELECTORAL SYSTEM.

            Republic- a state in which the head of government is not a monarch or other hereditary head of state.