The Pauls “Two-Prong Strategy?”
James Poulos gets a lot right here in his analysis, in outlining the dynamics involved in advancing our principles in a way that could produce tangible results. Writing at Forbes, Poulos sees a “two-prong strategy” in Ron and Rand Paul:
That makes for a two-prong Paul family strategy: play an outsider’s game and an insider’s game. While Ron keeps the grassroots purists happy, Rand admits freely that he’d be “honored” to serve as Romney’s vice president. From one angle, this seems a dangerous approach: it could give the Pauls the worst of both worlds, discrediting themselves among libertarians and Republicans alike.
There are two potent reasons why it’s not such a high-risk move, however. First, there’s not much of an alternative. Second, libertarians and Republicans alike have a deep-seated need to have it both ways in just the manner the Pauls are achieving.
Consider the alternatives to the two-prong strategy — giving up on politics altogether, assimilating completely into the Republican party, and doubling down on the Libertarian party itself. It’s clear that libertarians are enjoying their moment of increased national relevance; given the libertarian cast of some frustrations on the left with Obama and the continued disenchantment of many conservatives with establishmentarianism on the right, there’s much less to savor about turning a cold shoulder to the national political scene. Yet, the time is not yet ripe for a full push to burrow into the heart of the GOP. Ron and Rand may actually both be setting libertarianism on a course for a much closer encounter with the centers of Republican power, but libertarians are far from ready to check their identity at the door… (*my note: nor would we) For the foreseeable future, the future of libertarian Republicanism belongs to the Pauls.
Despite the protracted bickering and fretting this may cause, it leaves everyone on the right better off. Booting the Paul people from the GOP might gratify some neoconservatives, it’s not possible to expel them without performing a full libertarianectomy — and any Republican who’s willing even to risk that outcome just isn’t serious about winning elections… .
More than grief, Ron and Rand deserve applause from the factions they’re working to bring together.
This is among the many columns and observations from various pundits emerging, outlining how the Ron Paul movement is influencing and changing the Republican Party. The rEVOLution has many angles. Poulos’ entire column is well worth your time.