Congressman Ron Paul (R-Texas) has become one of the most interesting individuals in modern politics. He not only brought previously untouched issues to the forefront of mainstream discourse, but also assembled a new force of political activists who are likely to remain influential for years to come. While his 2008 presidential campaign concluded with little success, it helped spawn a movement that transitioned into the Campaign For Liberty. The 2012 presidential campaign was a different story, as a delegate-focused strategy led to most state conventions being showdowns between the grassroots and establishment, ending with the Republican National Convention being a tense battleground. While Congressman Paul never became President, he has become a figure who will not be forgotten and his supporters will carry on this torch through the future of American politics.
The Paul grassroots have another plan in mind: Paul winning the Nobel Peace Prize. An Internet movement is slowly building to urge consideration with hopes of their hero being honored for his service to the cause of peace.
One of the issues that Paul has become known for is foreign policy, which drew as much controversy as it did praise. The Constitution, which is the framework of our system of government pursuant to Article 6, requires Congress to issue a Declaration of War before the Commander-In-Chief can deploy troops. The only exceptions to this rule are to repel an invasion or suppress rebellion. Despite the fact we have been involved in multiple conflicts from Korea to Libya, Congress has not formally declared war since World War 2. Paul often correctly observes that these conflicts we involve ourselves in are undeclared, and thus illegal. He is known among his supporters as the leading defender of the Constitution in politics for this and other stances.
Paul has frequently called for a reduction in military bases globally. The United States occupies over one hundred countries abroad, including places like Saudi Arabia, which breeds hostile opposition from militant groups like extremist Islamists. It has been cited by Osama bin Laden as a reason for attacking the United States. Thus, our constant presence abroad is creating more aggression against us. This position is also backed up by various foreign policy experts such as twenty-two year veteran of the Central Intelligence Agency and former Bin Laden Unit chief Michael Scheuer.
An opponent of the present occupations, Paul has also frequently called for the return of the soldiers from overseas. If our presence overseas is causing others to loathe us, then the deployment of our soldiers will only put honorable Americans in harms way and for what gain? In the last decade, we overthrew Saddam Hussein, which opened the door for an insurgent uprising in Iraq. We assassinated bin Laden, but spent years fighting in the wrong countries. Our seemingly endless war without end against broadly-defined terrorism has produced rising debt, significant casualty numbers and civilian deaths, as well as record-breaking numbers of troop suicides.
Ron Paul has been a leader for freedom in America and peace abroad. He embodies the principles the founding fathers gave to America, by believing we should lead by example and not force. The use of arms to accomplish the goals of liberty does not produce liberty, but rather tyranny, even when executed with good intentions. By standing in opposition of war, resisting the propaganda that comes leads to it, and showing a willingness to work with individuals across the aisle to accomplish his goals, Paul has proved himself as a leader for common sense and humanity. He is a true American and a sincere human being, certainly an individual deserving of the Nobel Peace Prize.