Ron Paul: I hope you come out on January 3rd. But there’s no reason to be despondent about how this country is going right now, if we do the right thing. And I believe that most people in this country know what the right thing to do is. The country has to live within its means, and therefore, I propose, in the first year, to cut federal government spending by 1 trillion dollars.
Gregg Jarrett: Well, that was Ron Paul on the campaign trail in Iowa yesterday. Polls are showing he’s popular there, but the Texas Congressman is responding to harsh words from his rivals, Mitt Romney, Michelle Bachmann and others saying Paul will not be the nominee. Newt Gingrich says he wouldn’t even vote for him. Dough Wead is the senior advisor to Ron Paul, he’s been with him in Iowa but happens to be in DC today.
Doug, thanks for being with us. Congressman Paul is being criticized by his rivals and others for, among other things, claiming that America is to blame for 9/11, condemning the killings of Bin Laden and Anwar al-Awlaki and blaming the U.S. for provoking Iran’s nuclear program. Aren’t those foreign policy views of Mr. Paul contrary to what most Americans think?
Doug Wead: I think they would be if those were truly his sentiments, but a lot of what he says and believes is misrepresented. He believes strongly in the constitution, and that if we want to go to war, let’s go to war. He voted in favor of going after Osama Bin Laden and he supported Israel in 1981 almost alone.
Gregg Jarrett: He opposed the assassination, though.
Doug Wead: He opposed the way the assassination was conducted, he felt it should have been done immediately when we went in.
Gregg Jarrett: Didn’t he say America was to blame for 9/11 because we had troops in Saudi Arabia?
Doug Wead: No, he hasn’t said that, he said that that is the reason that is what many Islamic fundamentalist believe.
Gregg Jarrett: That’s what motivated them, he said.
Doug Wead: Yes, he believes that they believe that. And many observers including our own defense department, Wolfowitz and others say that.
Gregg Jarrett: Most Americans don’t buy that.
Doug Wead: They may not, Ron Paul is incorruptible, he’s honest, he’s a good example of our foreign policy now. As just in the last few weeks we have troops on the ground, boots on the ground in Australia for purposes of defending us against China. So we borrow money from China, to have American troops in Australia to defend us against China. He believes we need a little more sanity.
Doug Wead: That does seem to resonate with a lot of folks, just anecdotally based on all the emails we get. Here’s what Congressman Paul’s rivals, though, are saying. I want to quote them, we’ll put it up on the screen. “Ron Paul’s views are totally outside the mainstream of virtually every decent American”, that’s Newt Gingrich.
“Ron Paul is to the left of Barack Obama on national security. He’s even on the left of Dennis Kucinich. Don’t Laugh”, that was rick Santorum.
“Ron Paul would be dangerous as President”, that’s Michele Bachmann.
Your response to that, Doug?
Doug Wead: There’s nothing dangerous about the U.S. constitution. If blocking the Strait of Hormuz or some other action by Iran was deemed as an act of war, or we decided we needed to react, as a President, he would take it to the U.S. Congress, we would decide, declare a war, we’d win it and then we’d get out. That’s what he believes, and the U.S. constitution is not dangerous. It’s dangerous to take these risks of avoiding.
Gregg Jarrett: I’m trying to run through a bunch of subjects here, I want to put his economic ideas up on the screen. We heard one of them in the introduction: cutting 1 trillion dollars of spending in the first year alone, terminate 5 cabinet agencies, lower the corporate tax rate to 15%, eliminate capital gains taxes, “narrow” the new healthcare law, repeal Sarbanes-Oxley, the corporate financial reporting.
Look, Doug, Rick Santorum took a look at that and he said, “You know what, Ron Paul couldn’t get Congress to cut or eliminate anything since he’s only passed one bill in 20 years in Congress”. I double checked that with a library of Congress, Ron Paul sponsored 620 bills, he passed 1, and it was fairly insignificant. Doesn’t Congressman Paul have a history of failure when it comes to getting his proposals passed?
Doug Wead: You know, the greatest contribution he’s made, which he doesn’t get a lot of credit for because he doesn’t put his name on everything, was pulling back the curtain on the Federal Reserve. 4 years ago, Greg, 74% of this country didn’t even know what the Federal Reserve is. Today, 78% of the nation wants it audited. Obama, Romney, would audit a waitress to make sure she pays taxes on her tip money, but won’t audit the Federal Reserve. But thanks to Ron Paul, we got a partial audit, it showed in 2008 that 16 trillion dollars (the national debt was 14 trillion dollars) was loaned out in interest-free money to major banks in this country. We’ve always had corruption in Washington, but people are really angry because the corruption has reached a level that they’re losing the value of their homes, the value of their IRAs, and Ron Paul is the only person with the guts to take this on.
Gregg Jarrett: Dough, let me squeeze one more in about the polls, and we don’t sneeze to the fact that he has a strong organization in Iowa. As we said in the introduction, he’s very popular, the polls demonstrate that. He’s at or near to the top, but there’s a different poll I want to ask you about, it’s a recent Washington Post poll. Of the 25% of voters who view him favorably, nearly 2/3rds do not identify themselves as Republicans. And among conservatives, only 8% view him favorably. Dough, how do you win the GOP nomination with numbers like that?
Doug Wead: Well, I’ll give you some more numbers from that very same poll, and from the recent poll last night that was released by NBC. They show the perception is that Ron Paul can’t win a general election, they show in the NBC poll 8% of registered Republicans don’t think he can win. The ABC poll which shows that 9% think he can’t win. But the same poll asked them to choose between Barack Obama and Ron Paul, and Ron Paul did better than Newt Gingrich and was with a statistical tie with Mitt Romney. So we have a candidate who can win, and the best evidence of that, Greg, is you don’t see any Democrat pundits on TV puffing Ron Paul, because they know he can win.
Gregg Jarrett: Alright, and as we mentioned, he can win in Iowa, he’s very strong there, and he’s some pretty strong in some other states as well. You’re a very eloquent spokesperson, so, Dough Wead, thanks for being with us. We appreciate it.
Doug Wead: Thank you, Greg.
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