Ron Paul on Meet the Press
Republican candidate Ron Paul is on Meet the Press. (live-blog)
He wants to get rid of the IRS and income tax. We could save hundreds of millions if we had a sensible foreign policy. The goal is to cut spending.
We should bring our troops home and save hundreds of millions of dollars. We don't need to be starting wars or to be the policemen of the world. We can defend this country without troops in Germany, Japan and other places.
Presidents don't have the authority to declare war. Only Congress can declare war.
What if Iran invades Israel? They aren't going to, that's like asking what if Iran invaded Mars.
Israel's leadership encourages Americans to go into Iran and bomb it. He would cut off all foreign aid to Israel and to the Arab countries. Israel is dependent on us and we should end it.
September 11: They don't attack us because we are rich and free but because we are over there. Al Qaeda's determination comes from us being over there and being provoked.
The incentive for Osama to recruit suicide bombers would end once we left. Al Qaeda has more members now than before 9/11. Why produce the incentive for them?
We have 700 bases in 130 countries. There are radicals on each side. He blames not the American people but the people who hijacked our foreign policy.
Wars, including the war against drugs and the war against terrorism make it tougher to sell liberty and the constitution.
We don't need more Patriot Acts, more real id cards, more suspension of habeas corpus, we need more freedom.
He's not against the FBI doing investigations, just their invasion of our privacy. He's against the CIA having secret prisons and engaging in torture.
He's not against public schools. Denies that he called for it in 1988, says that's a mis-statement.
Social Security: We need to take care of the people who are dependent on us. We shouldn't turn people out in the street.
He's never voted for an earmark, but he's put them in bills for residents of his district. Says Russert is confused. The whole process is corrupt. He votes against it and wants to change it but when Congress passes it, that's the system and it's ok to take advantage of it, like tax credits. (Note, this was his most confusing, contradictary answer.)
Term limits: Russert says he ran on them. He's been in Congress 18 years. Paul says he didn't run on voluntary term limits, but he supports compulsory term limits. Voluntary limits are different than compulsory ones.
Immigration: Russert says in 1988 he wanted no immigration policy and said we should welcome everyone who wants to come here and work. Paul tells Russert he also said there may be a time when it becomes an invasion. He's changed his mind now because it's an economic issue and immigration is making us more of a welfare state.
He wants to amend the Constitution to say children born in the U.S. of undocumented persons shouldn't be given citizenship.
All drugs should be decriminalized at the federal level. They should be treated like alcohol. Criticizes federal arrests of medical marijuana patients in states where it is legal. Drugs should be regulated, if at all, at the state level. He thinks drugs are terrible but the states should deal with it.
On the civil rights bill: Opposes it as a property rights issue. Says the law has nothing to do with race relations. His opposition is based on the issue of the feds taking private property rights.
Civil War: We shouldn't have gone to war. There were better ways of getting rid of slavery. 600,000 died. The Government should have bought the slaves and released them, it would have been cheaper.
He once supported Ronald Reagan and now says he was a failure in many ways. He called Bush I a bum. He didn't vote for Bush II. He once resigned from the Republican party. Russert asks why he is running as a Republican. He represents Republicans and wants to make the party stand for what it used to stand for. Says he represents Republican ideals more than the other candidates running.
He has no plans to run as an Independent if he doesn't get the nomination but he won't rule it out.
On Huckabee's Christmas commercial and his response to it -- he quoted Sinclair Lewis, "When fascism comes to this country, it will be wrapped in... a cross." (The Sinclair Lewis Society denies Lewis ever wrote that.) Says he hadn't seen the commercial at the time, it was a spontaneous comment, having been told Huckabee used a cross in the commercial. Explains that we are close to fascism in this country, not Hitler-type fascism but corporate type fascism.
The end.My thoughts: He's a dangerous nut. He only wants to end the war on drugs on a federal level. His endorsement of a Tancredo-type amendment to the Constitution to deny citizenship of children born in this country to the undocumented is appalling. There are better ways to restore our civil liberties than a vote for Ron Paul.
Update: The transcript is here.
|< Good Food Makes Good Inmates | On Hillary's White House Experience >|