The Conservative Political Action Conference is an annual event that usually hosts some of the most nationalist and socially conservative Republicans the nation can come up with, but this year the choice of the voters in the straw poll was none other than my favorite libertarian rebel, Ron Paul.
In the speech, he does a good job of explaining why he feels his preference for a non-interventionist foreign policy is actually more consistent with conservative values than any policy or war Bush introduced to the Republican party. He even dares to go so far as to call for a greater tolerance of individual lifestyle choices that Republicans might not personally agree with. Shocking stuff, but don’t take my word for it! If you’ve got half an hour, its worth hearing what the Republican party should be saying if they want to have a chance with the younger generations:
But those younger generations aren’t the only ones voting or showing up at the CPAC this year, so not everyone in the crowd was happy to hear that Ron Paul had won the straw poll. Among older Republicans, Ron Paul is seen as little better than a Democrat – or as bad as a downright traitor.
Why the venom? Well, Ron Paul is more concerned about actual freedom than any kind of partisan power. A strong Republican party could start whatever wars it likes and enforce its own vision of ideal social regulations, but a Ron Paul Republican party would be more concerned with the liberty of the individual citizen and the financial position of the nation as a whole.