MN Star Tribune: Paul disciples seek local officesSubmitted by libertyablaze on Tue, 06/12/2012 - 02:25
I glanced at the paper this afternoon while standing in line and found Paul's face on the front page! Media bias aside it made me smile, THIS is what our movement is about...
"Paul disciples seek local offices"
"Having made their mark at the Republican state convention, Ron Paul-styled libertarians are stepping forward to stand for political office -- many for the first time -- in cities and counties across the state.
Marianne Stebbins, chair of Paul's Minnesota campaign, says that so far she knows of Paul supporters running for office in 11 counties and 13 cities, including several metro-area governments. That's in addition to 26 Paul candidates for the Legislature.
Can the message of a national figure known for lambasting the Federal Reserve Bank and touting the virtues of strict constitutionalism resonate at the local level? Absolutely, she said. Government should be as local as possible.
Besides, added Stebbins, a small-business owner, "There's only one Ron Paul, but we need to see thousands of them. They need to start as acorns in the field."
But some wonder how Paul's libertarian views will play in the long run with the standard GOP take on traditional values. Fewer Republicans belong to the Paul forces than to the popular Tea Party movement, which is socially conservative on such issues as abortion, same-sex marriage, gun rights and immigration.
"A lot of the Ron Paul supporters are socially liberal and 180 degrees from the social agenda of a lot of GOP activists. This is just night and day," said Carleton College political science Prof. Steven Schier. "If you're going to grow the party that way, expect a lot of big fights."
Stebbins expects the number of local Paul candidates to grow in August, when candidate filings open for many cities. She's seriously thinking about running herself for the Excelsior City Council.
Dave Wahlstedt, a medical device engineer and innkeeper from Excelsior, is going to the Republican National Convention in August as a Paul delegate. But first he filed last week to run against Hennepin County Commissioner Jan Callison.
"On the train to liberty, we can talk about the end of the line or the next stop," Wahlstedt said. "The next stop is commissioner pay, reduced property taxes and ending the purchase of new buildings ... and how to make government work more efficiently.""