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Whispers inside the fractured Republican Party suggest that when the smoke clears from a brutal primary campaign war for the party’s Presidential nomination, the most desirable candidate might just be maverick Libertarian Ron Paul.
“Dr. Paul’s ideas are becoming more and more mainstream,” a longtime GOP political strategist, who asked not to be identified, tells Capitol Hill Blue. “In the end, he could be the party’s savior.”
Paul, long dismissed by the GOP established and all-but-abandoned by the tea party movement he helped create, is reaching more and more like-minded voters who want smaller government and more adherence to the Constitution.
Although many tea party members have flocked to Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Paul’s political base is growing and his followers are passionate, ardent and determined.
“It is time we remembered that the Constitution is the guiding document of our land,” says Democrat-turned-Paul Supporer John Henkins of Dallas. “Ron Paul will restore this nation to the Constitutional Republic that our founding fathers created.”
Kansas City businessman Ron Luper says Paul’s ideas aren’t as extreme as some claim.
“Jack Kemp advocated returning the country to the gold standard,” Luper says. “No one called him an extremist. He was part of the Republican establishment.”
While pundits call the race for the GOP nomination a “two-man race,” Paul continues to poll well within Republican circles, hovering in third place just behind the frontrunners.
“He’s positioned to be in the right place at the right time,” says a retired GOP consultant. “When Perry and Romney reduce themselves to ashes the party could look to Ron Paul as their salvation.”