Ron Paul: Secession Is an American Principle

Ron Paul: This weekend I got a couple of calls from the media asking me questions about Rick Perry, our governor here in Texas and the statements he made about possible secession. Now, he didn’t call for secession, but he was restating a principle that was long held and at least in the original time of our country, and that is that there was a right to secession.

Actually, after the Civil War, nobody believes there is a so-called right to secession, but it is a very legitimate issue to debate because all of the states that came into the Union before the Civil War believed they have a right to secede and New England in the early part of the 19th century actually considered it, and nobody questioned them about whether they had the right to do it or not.

Since the Civil War, it’s been sort of a dead issue, but he brought it up. It stirred the media and believe me, it really stirred some of the liberal media where they started really screaming about what is going on here. “This is un-American”, I heard one individual say, “This is treasonous to even talk about it.”

Well, they don’t know their history very well because if they think about it, it’s an American tradition. It’s very American to talk about secession. That’s how we came into being. Thirteen colonies seceded from the British and established a new country, so secession is very much an American principle.

What about all the strong endorsements we have given over the past decade or two of those republics that seceded from the Soviet system? We were delighted with this. We never said, “Oh no. Secession is treasonous”.

No. Secession is a good principle. Just think of the benefits that would have come over these last 230-some years if the principle of secession had existed. That means the federal government would always have been restrained, not to overburden the states with too much federalism, too many federal rules and regulations.

But since that was all wiped out with the Civil War, the federal government has grown by leaps and bounds and we have suffered the consequences, and we need to reconsider this. It’s not un-American to think about the possibility of secession. This is something that’s voluntary. We came together voluntarily. A free society means you can dissolve it voluntarily. That was the whole issue was about.

Just remember one of the reasons that Wilson drove us in unnecessarily into World War I. He talked about what we have to give, have every country in the world the benefit of self-determination, a good principle. Of course, I don’t think he really believed that. But self-determination is a good principle. It’s a very American principle, so to me it’s a shame that we can’t discuss this.

You know, it’s interesting that so many of us have been taught for so many years, and as long as I can remember from the first grade on up taking the pledge of allegiance that we have a republic that’s “indivisible” and we have been preached that and preached it. So therefore, there is no contest, no question since the Civil War that we have even the thought that this could happen.

But you know what a lot of people don’t talk about and they really don’t even know about is who wrote the pledge to the flag. The pledge to the flag came from, for instance, Bellamy, an avowed Socialist who wanted to put into concrete in the pledge this principle of being indivisible, and he did it, you know, for the celebration ironically 400 years of the celebration of the landing of Christopher Columbus, so it was in 1892.

I mean, the pledge of allegiance has not been here, you know, all our history. So I think it’s worth of discussion. I think people should discuss this because right now, the American people are sick and tired of it all and I think the time will come when people will consider it much more seriously is when the federal government can no longer deliver. That time will come when the dollar collapses.

No matter what they do and how many promises they have and how many bailouts they have, they can’t do it if the money doesn’t work. So then, the independence of the states will come back and it doesn’t mean that you’ll be un-American to even contemplate what might have to be done once the dollar crashes.

While this video was originally recorded on 4/19/2009, Ron Paul spokeswoman Rachel Mills confirmed earlier today (11/13/2012) that Ron Paul “feels the same now” about secession as he did in this video.


  • is that why Dr Paul won? oh wait is that also why Gary got so many millions of more votes than romney or obama?

  • Libertarianism is the future!! It simply means the least government and the most freedom at the federal, state, and local level. I’m guessing that you secretly crave it .

  • Yeah, I’m hoping that the individual states will stand against Obama’s economic policies by breaking out of the United States if that’s what it takes to stop destruction. I would support the same if Romney were President and tried to take away states’ rights. The Constitution does not prohibit states from seceding.

  • Ron Paul has found a way to get youthful believers in Ayn Rand to believe in what they consider “libertarianism”. It seems to me libertarianism is a blind faith that charitable giving is all that’s needed to fund government. I see how globalist corporations already have so much power, no voluntarily funded anything can counterbalance them.

  • I have been observing for several years that Obama and the democrats have favored investments in infrastructure in the US, which have fallen behind in recent years, due to neglect by GOP, which seems to be their nature. The GOP leadership has been very unwilling to go along with this even though it’s what the majority wants, and assumably, the majority of Americans. Thus the nation, and indirectly, the world, suffers because of needless GOP filibusters. R Paul=distraction.

  • Not that this has anything to do with your statement. But political flim-flam messages usually use emotional words like, “children” “future” “money” to stir-up and mislead people without telling objective facts. They make use of ignorant people who look at things based on impression rather than facts. “If Obama looks righteous and smart, then he must be” is the typical mentality of a ignoramus. “Yes we can”.

    “It’s easier to fool people than to convince them they’ve been fooled” – Mark Twain.

  • Floating statements that target Ron Paul like that don’t mean anything unless you can substantiate with an example and proof of how Obama is trying to “bring back to economy”, while Ron Paul isn’t.

  • I do know that Ron Paul is on record as wanting to criminalize abortion. As someone who has been married to a woman who could not safely go through pregnancy, I find that astounding.

  • I can’t speak to that because i don’t know what your version of what women’s rights are, but here is something about Ron Paul. I don’t know if its true or not, but take it as you will.

  • Subversive is as subversive does.

  • Since I live in the US, I would suffer the consequences of Ron Paul’s policies, if he got any traction. You could watch the antics from afar. I think he has somehow enabled subversives to try and mess up the country when it is vulnerable, when Obama is trying to bring a healthy economy back to the ordinary people in the US, but has substantial opposition in the GOP.

  • Good God. Please slink back into the Matrix. Reality eludes you.

  • Did you ever notice how vulgar, intellectually-bankrupt, hateful, contempt-filled and authoritarian your average statist from either side of the partisan divide is? They’re all little petty dictators in their own right.

  • To state what should have been obvious, you are too much
    about money and not enough about general human needs in
    this world. Thus you are like a bull in the china shop of human
    experience, aka a bully in a china shop. So, yes, brainwashed.

  • Subversive, eh?

  • So apparently you are daring him and putting pressure on him at a time when he is trying very hard to bring the US back to a healthy economy. Which is why he won the election with a substantial majority DESPITE the efforts of GOP to sabotage his election by skewing the vote. RED FLAG! RED FLAG! That alone tells me there is more afoot here than general election politics, and makes me very distrustful of this subversive secession movement.

  • Most irrational people are convinced they are totally rational. Which is why we sometimes need the guys with the white coats.

  • Brainwashed? You mean educated in Economics, Finance, and Business. Human values tend to be subjective, if you’ve ever taken an International Cultural Communication class. Good for one group is bad for another.

  • True, thanks to President Lincoln. He changed things, but I still am for trying secession now. I don’t think that President Obama would demand a civil war.

  • True, true. Lobbying power is a huge problem in all democracies. But I also see fault in a government/politicians that allow it to happen. I think the problem can be alleviated w/ a smaller government. Smaller govt = less taxes= less money in govt = less power for lobbyists to fight over. The power must be in the hands of the citizens, not the government.