When someone mentions a Mile- High battle for the nomination, most people think about the Democratic National Convention to be held August 25-28. But there are few other battles to take place in Denver this year that may be as interesting for the political watcher.
May 22-26 should bring some more excitement to a city poised to host the nominating process for the individual set to become the next President. The Libertarian party is coming to town and there may be some familiar names set to do battle in the shadow of the mountains.
First, does the name Mike Gravel, former US Senator from Alaska ring a bell? Yes, the one who brought the candidates back to real life during the debates during the 2008 pre- Iowa caucuses is now a member of the Libertarian party and is running for the nomination of the party. Now will some of the Liberty minded folks see Mike as a nationally known savior or will they see him as one who joins the church one day and become pope next month? Only time will tell.
But there is another nationally known politician. One who was on the receiving end of the LP attack a few years ago when he was running for re-election to the Congress due to his position on medical marijuana, joined the party shortly thereafter and has been mentioned as a possible candidate for the nomination this year. Bob Barr spent 8 years in Congress until he ran into a Libertarian buzz saw when running for re-election. Since changing his registration, he has recently announced that he'd like to be the party standard bearer. He is polling at 7% in national polls and when placed in a three way race with Clinton and McCain, he is up over 11%. The 7% number is higher than Ross Perot had when he announced in 1992.
Now there a number of other candidates well known and not so known inside the party circles such as research scientist and ethicist Dr. Mary Ruwart and former VP nominee Steve Kubby. But there is one desire deep inside the members of the Libertarian party. That desire is that someone else will show up and announce and /or accept a draft nomination.
Dr. Ron Paul.
I like Ron Paul. He is one of those candidates that when he says something, you can take his word to the bank. There are not many folks you can say that about in this age in any field.
Now you may not like what Ron says but that's OK. You can still take it to the bank. He will not tell you one thing on Monday morning over breakfast and change his mind before lunch. If he is a big opponent of war on drugs today, he will be tomorrow. If he wants no restrictions on the 2nd amendment and gun regulations on Wednesday, come Thursday the NRA will still like him.
The problem is that Paul says he is not interested in a third party run. He didn't win the nomination as a Republican and he has no desire to go any other route. He seems to think that he will continue his travels and speak liberty to any size audience who will listen.
And little do those in the high dollar campaigns know is that Paul has an army that will follow or sit at home this November. The reason why Paul got no further than he did was the recognition from those covering the race. Always dubbed a second (or less) tier candidate, he set some fantastic records for fund raising and that money and the folks that own it will be untapped and disappointed again this year.
But it still would be interesting to see a draft movement in Denver next month. It would definitely get the press there a couple months early.