The Ron Paul Delegate Strategy Wounds a Republican Rising Star

Weigel
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.

Advertisement

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 reporter for Bloomberg Politics

TODAY IN SLATE

Culturebox

The Ebola Story

How our minds build narratives out of disaster.

The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola

PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer

The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics

A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers

Education

Welcome to 13th Grade!

Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.

Culturebox

The Actual World

“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.

Want Kids to Delay Sex? Let Planned Parenthood Teach Them Sex Ed.

Would You Trust Walmart to Provide Your Health Care? (You Should.)

  News & Politics
Politics
Oct. 22 2014 9:42 PM Landslide Landrieu Can the Louisiana Democrat use the powers of incumbency to save herself one more time?
  Business
Continuously Operating
Oct. 22 2014 2:38 PM Crack Open an Old One A highly unscientific evaluation of Germany’s oldest breweries.
  Life
Gentleman Scholar
Oct. 22 2014 5:54 PM May I Offer to Sharpen My Friends’ Knives? Or would that be rude?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 22 2014 4:27 PM Three Ways Your Text Messages Change After You Get Married
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 22 2014 5:27 PM The Slate Walking Dead Podcast A spoiler-filled discussion of Episodes 1 and 2.
  Arts
Culturebox
Oct. 22 2014 11:54 PM The Actual World “Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.
  Technology
Future Tense
Oct. 22 2014 5:33 PM One More Reason Not to Use PowerPoint: It’s The Gateway for a Serious Windows Vulnerability
  Health & Science
Wild Things
Oct. 22 2014 2:42 PM Orcas, Via Drone, for the First Time Ever
  Sports
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.