Sunday, October 14, 2007

David Frum: Ron Paul will run as 3rd party candidate... to the left of Hillary

The National Review's David Frum, is predicting that libertarian/Republican Ron Paul will run as a 3rd party candidate in the fall:

"He'll have the money, he'll have the ego, and he will have the cause."

But that's not the interesting part of Frum's prediction: he believes that with Hillary Clinton tacking rightward on national security, space will open up to her left where Paul could get 2-3% of the vote because of his strong anti-war stance.

Leaving aside the questionable implication that being opposed to foreign military adventures is a concern that is found solely on the left, and also leaving aside the question of how many left-leaning anti-war voters would be able to vote for a small-government guy like Ron Paul, this is still a fascinating speculation.

It would definitely be one for the history books: Ron Paul costing a Democrat the election...

Even more intriguing is the idea that there might be 2-3% of lefties who would be attracted to Paul on the basis of his non-interventionist stances -- and who might hang around him long enough to find the rest of Paul's libertarian/conservative philosophy to be more compelling than they might ever otherwise have thought.

Forget any transitory effect on the 2008 presidential election -- a shift of 2-3% of American voters from being progressive/liberals to being constitutionalist/libertarians would be the most critical 4-6% swing in recent political memory.

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