December 23rd, 2007
03:55 PM ET
15 years ago

GOP contender will not rule out third-party run

GOP hopeful Ron Paul on NBC's Meet The Press Sunday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Texas Rep. Ron Paul refused to rule out a third party bid Sunday if he fails to win the Republican Party presidential nomination.

When Tim Russert of NBC’s 'Meet the Press' asked the Texas congressman if he’d consider an independent bid, he replied: "I have no intention of doing that."

When pressed by Russert to state unequivocally that he would not, Paul demurred. "I deserve one weasel wiggle now and then, Tim!"

Paul lost to Phil Gramm in the 1984 Texas Republican primary for the U.S. Senate. Four years later, he ran for president as the Libertarian Party nominee.

The Republican presidential contender - who has an intensely loyal national following - is pulling in record fundraising sums, prompting speculation that he may continue his White House bid even if he does not fare well among Republican primary voters.

Paul is currently averaging single-digit showings in most recent surveys of GOP voters nationally and in early-voting states.

During the Sunday interview, Paul criticized the Civil Rights Act, pointing out that Barry Goldwater opposed it. But he would not say he whether would vote against the legislation today. "I get more support from black people than any other Republican candidate, according to some statistics," he added.

Paul also contended that the Civil War had been unnecessary because the United States would have gotten rid of slavery eventually.

–CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand

Filed under: Ron Paul
soundoff (235 Responses)
  1. TFS, Texas

    I would hope that my representative would work for SOME projects that would benefit his constituents. Isn't that what we elect them for? Dr. Paul is against pork barrel legislation that only benefits large corporations and not the people.

    December 26, 2007 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  2. Fred, TN

    Any lame criticism of Dr. Ron Paul has only served to strenghten our support of the most noble of candidates.
    Mr. Russert and the other corporate spinmeister critics have to bring up ancient questions such as the Civil War in a feeble attempt to trip Ron Paul. It does not work and only shows Dr. Paul's character and integrity.

    December 26, 2007 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  3. Ajay Jain

    Ron Paul will be the 2008 "spoiler" and responsible for a Hillary win (12/26/07). You may quote me on this in January 2009 if not before (wink, wink)!!

    Go Hillary44 08!

    December 26, 2007 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  4. Luke, Tyler TX

    Yes, the interviewer pushed him into saying that he was not 100% sure he would not run as an independent. He said he didn't really want to and was 99.99% sure he would not.

    The story also does not mention Ron Paul's reason for opposing the civil rights act. It's not because he dosen't believe in civil rights. He had a problem with the way it was written.

    I wish CNN's reporting was as honest and consistent as Dr. Paul.

    December 26, 2007 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  5. G


    December 27, 2007 05:43 am at 5:43 am |
  6. DM, somewhere, Illinois

    "That is why we have a Constitution that advocates a strong federal government."

    And in what section would you find this? No, madam, I think you are wrong.

    December 27, 2007 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  7. Anonymous

    Again, another example of why we should not trust the word of CNN. This is just another cheap shot against Paul and his message of liberty...something that MSM fears.

    December 27, 2007 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  8. J. Francisco, Yakima, WA

    You pittifull Ron Paul backing saps have shoddy reasoning skills!

    The piece was fair, you Paul supporters just refuse to conform and adapt to reality. Your issues are with truth and facts, such stubborn things.

    December 28, 2007 03:20 am at 3:20 am |
  9. John Martin

    Abraham Lincoln proposed several times throughout his political career that the U.S. government should pay money to the slave states and export the slaves to Liberia, Africa, because he believed that slavery was morally and ploitically wrong. Congress would not pass his proposals to pay the slave states, and after he met with several promenent free blacks including Frederick Douglass, found that blacks abhored the idea of being shipped back to Africa. President Lincoln discussed with his cabinet the idea of paying the Confederacy to set their slaves free in early January, 1865, but they all rejected it. In January of 1865, the Confederate Vice President Alexander Stephens along with others proposed to Confederate President Jeffreson Davis that the South send a peace commission to negotiate with President Lincoln. Davis endorsed the idea provided that the South could keep her slaves and still susceed from the Union. Vice President Stephens along with two other commissioners passed through Union lines near City Point, VA, General Grant's headquarters on Jan. 28, 1865, and requested Grant to arrange a peace conference with Lincoln. Lincoln consented and arrived at City Point on Jan. 30,1865. Lincoln proposed his famous FOUR HUNDRED MILLION DOLLAR PLAN to the peace commision. He would pay the Confederacy that amount to be apportioned to the southern states by the number of slaves each held IF THEY WOULD FREE ALL THEIR SLAVES, AND LAY DOWN THEIR ARMS, AND RETURN TO THE UNION. Vice President Stephens said that Jefferson Davis would not approve it, and the conference ended. SO YOU SEE THAT LINCOLN TRIED TO SET THE SLAVES FREE BY PURCHASING THEM, BUT THE CONFEDERACY REJECTED IT.

    December 30, 2007 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  10. Jeff

    I hope all of you Ron Paul backers actually are registered & informed on how to vote for him, instead of hoping he will make a 3rd party bid for President.

    January 16, 2008 02:36 am at 2:36 am |
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