As the Florida primaries draw nearer, Rep. Ron Paul remains one of the most enigmatic figures of the upcoming presidential race.
Paul supporters tell the success story of a humble Constitutionalist OB-GYN who has out-fundraised top-tier candidates in a "revolution" set to return the government back to its people.
Skeptics of Paul point out that his policies are not only out of touch with the mainstream but implausible in today's world climate, and even accuse him of being a racist conspiracy theorist.
Ron Paul is not a savior. However, an objective look at his stances will show that he is a sensible politician whose policies can appeal to a majority of voters.
First off, Paul is not a racist. This allegation largely stems from newsletters attributed to Paul's name published over a decade ago which contained negative comments about blacks. Paul has repeatedly stated that he did not write the comments, and when asked by Wolf Blitzer on CNN if he repudiates the newsletter's remarks, he stated that he did not. In fact, the Austin president of the NAACP has decidedly supported Paul on this issue.
During the Jan. 10 GOP debates on Fox News, Paul urged that America use restraint and reason when dealing with Iran, stating that we must not let our guard down against President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Meanwhile, Iowa caucus-winner Mike Huckabee warned that if Iran ever "put their sights on an American vessel," the next thing they will see will be the "gates of hell" in response to an isolated incident with an Iranian vessel.
Paul, on the other hand, simply pleaded for restraint and demanded that we not look for reasons to launch a new war.
Mediator Brit Hume proceeded to ignore the warmongering of Paul's opponents and attempted to rip into his answer.
He insisted that Paul's opponents had just advocated a passive response to Iran, when in reality, Fred Thompson had just stated that the offensive Iranians would be "introduced to the virgins they've been looking forward to seeing" if they had taken "one more step."
The desecration of Paul's cautionary stance comes despite the fact that pre-emptive war with Iran is an unpopular idea nationwide, especially since the release of the most recent National Intelligence Estimate, which suggests that the country's nuclear program has been halted.
Paul would have a profound effect on domestic policy.
His plans center on constitutionality and states rights, such as eliminating the federal Department of Education and nullifying federal drug laws, The U.S. would save countless amounts of money and end Washington's inefficient control of these institutions.
Of course, many of Paul's policies would have a difficult time passing through Congress, but it seems that the buzzword for this year's elections is "change."
A Ron Paul nomination would be a mandate from the people for a new course, and would symbolically do more to spur the change of conventional politics in America than the election to office of any candidate who uses "change" as their platform.