The Ron Paul Delegate Strategy Wounds a Republican Rising Star

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
May 21 2012 3:50 PM

The Ron Paul Delegate Strategy Wounds a Republican Rising Star

Minnesota's 2012 U.S. Senate race is one of the less promising Republican targets. The incumbent, Sen. Amy Klobuchar, is a perfectly generic, gaffe-free Democrat in a bluer and bluer state. No one's counting on the GOP to beat her. So the race was set to be a try-out for a promising young Republican -- Pete Hegseth, the disturbingly square-jawed founder of the pro-Iraq surge "Vets for Freedom." He's 31. He's as telegenic as all-get out.

He is outnumbered by Ron Paul supporters.


The great Hegseth try-out was stalled this weekend by the Ron Paul Delegate Strategy. Paul showed up for both days of the Minnesota GOP convention, canceling an event in California in order to lock down 32 of 40 Republican delegates. Ask yourself: Was a convention full of anti-war libertarians likely to reward a Senate candidate who spent 2007 stumping for more troops to go to Kirkuk? No. The convention went to Rep. Kurt Bills, who had endorsed Paul for president. There are many anecdotes to pick from, but this is my favorite, which came after a Paulian was asked if he could vote for Romney.

"Absolutely not," said Nathan Atkins, a Republican convention delegate and Paul backer from Minneapolis. "I really don't think he's that different than Barack Obama. He doesn't represent change."
Atkins was wearing a tinfoil hat, a nod to more traditional GOP activists who have ridiculed Paul's backers as paranoid conspiracy theorists. He said if Paul isn't on the presidential ballot, he'd likely vote for Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 



Meet the New Bosses

How the Republicans would run the Senate.

The Government Is Giving Millions of Dollars in Electric-Car Subsidies to the Wrong Drivers

Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.

Photos of the Crowds That Took Over NYC for the People’s Climate March

Friends Was the Last Purely Pleasurable Sitcom

The Eye

This Whimsical Driverless Car Imagines Transportation in 2059

Medical Examiner

Did America Get Fat by Drinking Diet Soda?  

A high-profile study points the finger at artificial sweeteners.

I Wrote a Novel Envisioning a Nigerian Space Program. Then I Learned Nigeria Actually Has One.

A Futurama Writer on How the Vietnam War Shaped the Series

  News & Politics
Sept. 21 2014 11:34 PM People’s Climate March in Photos Hundreds of thousands of marchers took to the streets of NYC in the largest climate rally in history.
Business Insider
Sept. 22 2014 9:39 AM Adrian Peterson Has a Terrible Contract, and Cutting Him Would Save the Vikings a Lot of Money
The Eye
Sept. 22 2014 9:12 AM What Is This Singaporean Road Sign Trying to Tell Us?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 19 2014 4:58 PM Steubenville Gets the Lifetime Treatment (And a Cheerleader Erupts Into Flames)
  Slate Plus
Sept. 22 2014 8:08 AM Slate Voice: “Why Is So Much Honey Clover Honey?” Mike Vuolo shares the story of your honey.
Sept. 21 2014 9:00 PM Attractive People Being Funny While Doing Amusing and Sometimes Romantic Things Don’t dismiss it. Friends was a truly great show.
Future Tense
Sept. 22 2014 7:47 AM Predicting the Future for the U.S. Government The strange but satisfying work of creating the National Intelligence Council’s Global Trends report.
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 22 2014 5:30 AM MAVEN Arrives at Mars
Sports Nut
Sept. 18 2014 11:42 AM Grandmaster Clash One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.