The Next Ron Paul
...is Gary Johnson.
Talk is cheap. Every politician says what most Americans want to hear, that he/she is going to spend responsibly, fight corruption, keep America out of open-ended wars, rise above partisanship, and choose principle over party. Even Bush and Obama said they'd do all those things.
One of the things that sticks out the most about Congressman Ron Paul is that he is one of the very, very precious few politicians whose record matches his words. While we may only be seeing the tip of the iceberg in terms of Ron Paul's impact on American politics, at 74 his chance at our nation's highest elected office may have passed (he'll be 76 at the time of the 2012 election).
Enter libertarian Republican Gary Johnson, the two-term Governor of New Mexico who wowed the audience during his endorsement of Ron Paul at Dr. Paul's Rally for the Republic. At a youthful 56 and with an impressive number of triathlons and other feats under his belt (he summited Mount Everest in 2003), he has the vigor, health, and longevity that we need in a president. And unlike our current president, Johnson doesn't even smoke.
Why do I think Johnson would make the Republican's best choice to oppose Obama in 2012? First of all he'll win. Period. We can have that debate in the comment threads or on another post if you'd like, but I say Johnson has a better shot than Palin or any other GOP hopeful at actual victory. But more importantly, Johnson is policy-driven, principled, dedicated to limiting the size, role, and influence of government, and has the toughness we need to make that happen.
-A self-made business man with no political experience, Johnson exploded onto the scene of New Mexico politics and won a tough Republican party primary and then the governor's seat in a state where Democrats outnumbered Republicans two-to-one, all without mentioning his opponents even once in print, radio, or television.
-During his 8 years as governor, New Mexico experienced the longest period without a tax increase in its entire history.
-Instead of growing, the state government shrunk by 1,000 employees with no firings.
-At the end of his two terms, the state had a budget surplus.
-During his tenure, he vetoed 750 bills, more than the vetoes of the governors of all other 49 states over the same period combined!
-He was the only Republican governor not to endorse George W. Bush in 2000.
-He opposed the Iraq War from the very beginning.
-In 1999, Johnson became the highest office-holder in the U.S. to advocate an end to the War on Drugs and decriminalization of marijuana.
Who has a better record of executive experience than Gary Johnson of turning around a failed government and preventing it from growing and wasting ever more money? I humbly submit that the answer is: no one.
That is why I am excited to announce that I will be interviewing Gary Johnson live this Wednesday, Dec 2 at 6:00 PM Central / 5:00 PM Mountain Time and urging him to make a run for President in 2012. The show will stream over the Internet for one hour.
W. E. Messamore blogs at The Humble Libertarian