If Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaTime for sunshine on Trump-Russia investigation Getting politics out of the pit To cure Congress, elect more former military members MORE had 10 percent the conviction for the views he stated in 2008 that Ron Paul has for the views he has stated for decades the American economy and political landscape would be dramatically different and in my view, dramatically better. Let’s set aside our policy differences for a moment and consider the Ron Paul phenomenon, and why Ron Paul continues to have such dramatic impact on our political debate, despite contemptuous treatment he receives from the mass media.

Ron Paul has two things that very few politicians have. First, he has clearly defined opinions and visions for America which he has advocated with clarity and courage for decades. Second, he has a significant number of devoted supporters who share his opinions and visions, believe strongly in his personal integrity, and extend themselves by giving their time and their donations to his cause, which is their cause, which they believe is Amerca's cause.


The issue is not whether I agree with Paul or not. Sometimes I do, often I do not. The issue is that Ron Paul is the kind of conviction politician (to use Margaret Thatcher's excellent phrase) that America needs. In my world, Robert Kennedy was that kind of politician. I once hoped Obama would be, but now we know he is not. Ronald Reagan was a conviction politician. So was Ted Kennedy.

Politics should be a clash of competing ideas, not a vanity play for those with large egos, or an eBay auction where big money buys government, which sadly is the case today.

Literally for decades, Ron Paul has stated his views intelligently and cogently. He did not care whether he was swimming with the tide or swimming against the tide, because Ron Paul wanted to shape the tide. This is what leaders and conviction politicians do. This is what campaign workers and small donors seek. This is what America needs.

And this is what most in the major media and most Washington insiders will never understand, which is why Ron Paul is so under-covered and under-respected in the press. The press likes the cheap flavor of the month. This is why the clown Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump: I hope voters pay attention to Dem tactics amid Kavanaugh fight South Korea leader: North Korea agrees to take steps toward denuclearization Graham calls handling of Kavanaugh allegations 'a drive-by shooting' MORE reaps two months of starry coverage, and Ron Paul receives virtually nothing after essentially tying for first place in the Iowa Ames poll.

My bet is the latest flavor the month, Rick Perry, the hare, will be gone sooner than pundits think, while Ron Paul, the tortoise, has many more curtain calls to come.

What is impressive is the degree that other Republicans (including the Rick Perry who no longer champions Al GoreAlbert (Al) Arnold GoreAl Gore: 'This experiment with Trumpism is not going well' Protecting democracy requires action from all of us Poll: Democrat Bredesen leads GOP's Blackburn by 5 points in Tennessee Senate race MORE) sound like parrots repeating Ron Paul on issues.

In this very important sense, Ron Paul is already one of the big winners of the 2012 campaign.

This is why I find Ron Paul so interesting, and write about him so often. No, I do not want him to be president, but yes, I think America needs more conviction politicians like Ron Paul. Politics should be about ideas. Both parties are desperately in need of serious ideas right now. It would be a better world if our politics involved liberal Ron Pauls debating conservative Ron Pauls instead of the dirtbag debates that dominate American politics today.