Ron Paul: Why I Didn’t Run as an Independent


Interviewer: Ron Paul is packing up his Washington condo this week, preparing to sell it and move back to Texas for good. Paul is retiring from Congress, and last week he gave a farewell address from the House floor, repeating the small-government sermon he first shouted in obscurity, and then injected into the national debate. With his time in Washington DC coming to a close, I sat down with Paul for a kind of ‘exit interview’.

Question: You’ve been here on-and-off since 1976, what would you say the three most damaging special interests are in Washington?

Ron Paul: You know, I see so many, and they’re all the same.

Interviewer: I know, but you much have some that really bother you.

Ron Paul: I think the military-industrial complex is very bad.

Interviewer: That was No.1.

Ron Paul: I don’t know if they should be in order.

Interviewer: Okay, don’t give them in order.

Ron Paul: Another one would be the banking system: how the Federal Reserve works and how it helps big banks. The interest that I would like to see, and that I worked on, was to try to get those people who just want their freedom to take care of themselves, and that’s the one that’s the least influential. Up here, it’s the people who want stuff and who get the benefits by just lobbying for those things that they want.

Interviewer: Another thing you mentioned in your farewell speech is your belief that we need to build coalitions, not necessarily reach compromises. And I wonder if you think your beliefs could be a 51% coalition in your lifetime, or in what timeframe?

Ron Paul: I think if I talk to a crowd of people, no matter which crowd, and say, “Do you believe in the free enterprise system, that people should be able to work and have their earning?” they say, “Yea, I believe that”. And if I asked, “Do you believe that your privacy should be protected, that the government shouldn’t be in your bedroom, that they shouldn’t be spying on you?” people would agree. And, most of the time when I asked, “Do you think we should be the policeman of the world?” they say, “No”. But when it comes to the particulars, they don’t stick with it, and they say, “Yes, but go too far, you want too much freedom”.

Interviewer: Well, this is another thing you touched on in that speech, you said this idea of liberty is popular, has been popular, so why doesn’t it win. It’s kind of a question that you didn’t fully answer in that speech, why do you think it doesn’t win?

Ron Paul: Not a lot of people talk about it, and I did try to explain it in the speech, in that, the concern about freedom was lost because freedom creates so much prosperity, that people get complacent. Then they become materialistic, and all they can deal with is redistribution and they find that with the government, you can make more money by getting a contract from the government than by being a genius and being productive. You know, when I first came here in 1976, I think I was under the impression that if you talk about welfare, you’re talking about those people who won’t work and get food stamps. But I have a very different opinion now. That exists, and it’s not healthy, but that’s minor compared to the food stamps the wealthy get. The wealthy get the contracts and the special deals, and that’s where I think the biggest trouble is.

Interviewer: That’s a way of speaking that most Republicans don’t usually engage in. Your son, the senator from Kentucky, Rand Paul, said recently that the Republican Party is in danger of becoming a dinosaur.

Ron Paul: Yea, but I think the whole government and the Democratic Party and the Republican Party are all dinosaurs.

Interviewer: What’s the future of the Republican Party, though?

Ron Paul: Well, the same as the Democratic Party. The principles are dinosaurs. The parties are going to linger because they’re locked in by law. You know, we’re not allowed to compete, the laws are biased against us from competing. And if you go third-party, you can’t get in the debates and you can’t get on ballots.

Interviewer: You talk about the grip of that two-party system, did you seriously consider running as an independent for President in 2012?

Ron Paul: No.

Interviewer: You didn’t consider it because it’s not practical?

Ron Paul: Not practical, absolutely not practical. Because this would have been a good year to have an alternative, and you can’t get much of a showing either on the Libertarian side or the Green side.

Interviewer: So then, how do we get out of this system, what do us see as the answer to this, or do we just keep bumping along with the way things are? You can’t believe that, that would make you too sad.

Ron Paul: No, you go to the campuses, you rally the young people, and you stir up a whole generation of people. Ideas do have consequences, and that’s where the good news is, because the campuses are alive and well with these views and they know the system is bankrupt. And there is this illusion that you can spend endlessly and print endlessly, and there will always be credit out there. And so far so good, but credit can end quickly, the dollar can crash quickly, and a new system will have to be developed.

Interviewer: One last thing, where do you pride yourself?

Ron Paul: Nothing in particular, other than the fact that the people say, “One thing we can say about you is that you are very consistent”, and they say this in a very nice way.

Interviewer: And you’ve changed the discussion in this country, you must be proud of that.

Ron Paul: Yea, that would be nice, time will tell. But what I always get a charge out of is when they’re so nice and they say, “This is good, you’re very consistent”, they must say to themselves, “But I’m always inconsistent”, and that’s wonderful. And they run the show, I never ran anything, I was just bubbling along here when it came to legislation. So the people who, in a way, admit they’re inconsistent, get to run the Legislative System.

Interviewer: Thank you so much for your time, we really appreciate it.

Ron Paul: You’re welcome.


  • The best president America never had.

  • I support Ron Paul and I’m not afraid of you or zombies. I’m afraid of an Omnipotent Federal Government destroying Liberties, Peace, and Prosperity in this country.

  • Ron Paul is a goddam fuckin’ jackass and you Paultards love the fact that his ideas make your pathetic little fears of the doom of ”liberty” seem to be real. I wonder how many of you fuckin’ weirdos are stocking up on bottles of water and food and guns. The things you believe in are fucking ludicrous. What a bunch of fuckin’ wackjobs you are!
    LOOK OUT! HERE COME THE ZOMBIES! WE’RE GONNA STEAL YOUR “LIBERTY”!!!! And your food and your gold and your wives and daughters! Waa waa waa!

  • I’m a Canadian, Mr Ron Paul. And from what I have seen here and everywhere else I saw… would be the changing President, for the better.
    So, then, how do you become the President?!
    It’s the more honest you are….the more you can see how the others are lyiers, the more you have no chance!
    Mr Ron Paul…I am a Canadian and have heard sooooooo much truth from your mouth.
    To bad that the rest of the goveernment are such evil doers.
    Our world coud get along, but the higher ups won’t have it!

  • i love this man! we need him right now!

  • I can only speak for myself: I dislike his politics and it shows in those who hero worship him…anti-semites, racists, conspiracy nuts and chronic victims who want to blame “the government” for their inability to make it for themselves.

  • …and it still continues. 🙂

  • …and it still continues. 🙂

  • Lol

  • LINDSEY GRAHAM OWNED —————> watch?v=1vuLGoMjlZ0

  • To work WITH War, With 911, Terrorists,with Disease etc and gaining..

  • There IS a force working against The United States of America…They gave you AIDS again & again making you immune to peace and dependent for life.

  • Ron Paul was BORN in the USA right down to the micro level 😉 Got into Paulitics in 76. He’s The PRINCIPLE of TRUTH!

  • Disenchanted

    Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice shame on me….. I supported RP the last two elections. I now believe he didn’t want to be President. How the hell did he think he could skip the convention of his chosen party, and still get the nomination. By doing what he did, he was easily dismissed as not being relevant. The “weird uncle” of the Republican family, and his weird followers. (I was one) The Federal Reserve, the Banks, and the Military Industrial Complex have won again.

    • Dane

      @Disenchanted, I am unsure what you mean that he skipped the convention. He actually did show up at the convention for one. Two, he was only allowed a spot to speak if they could tell him what his speech could consist of. I would expect him to deliver the message he has been saying all along not what they wanted him to say. If he did go along with the party establishment on every whim then I certainly would not respect him the way I do. Also, even though he was there the only thing they did allow from him was a video to be played in his honor. That whole convention was just messed up. Either way, to say that he skipped the convention is just not a correct assumption in my opinion. It is like saying, why didn’t I show up to the party when I was handcuffed and gagged laying out in the front yard.

  • Mexican here for Ron Paul, i cant get enough of his integrity and dignity.

  • I don’t agree with him not running as an independant. His best strategy would have been to run as a republican to get much needed exposure and then switch to an independant towards the end.

  • I don’t agree with him not running as an independant. His best strategy would have been to run as a republican to get much needed exposure and then switch to an independant towards the end.

  • His impact on society came late in his carreer, but my what an impact. Here is to a good run Ron Paul. Hear! Hear!

  • His impact on society came late in his carreer, but my what an impact. Here is to a good run Ron Paul. Hear! Hear!

  • ♥ Dr. Paul!