Posted by Brad @ 12:27 pm on July 12th 2011

Ron Paul to Not Seek Reelection to Congress

His current term will be his last in the legislature, Lew Rockwell and Ron’s hometown paper report. He will instead focus on what has become the Cottage Industry of Ron Paul, his presidential run (or his son’s), his Campaign for Liberty, his educational efforts, his brand, etc.

I can’t say I blame him – he is getting up there in years too, and I’m sure he’s trying to keep all the balls in the air takes a tremendous amount of time and energy. Still a shame – after being elected to Congress as a non-incumbent three times, and spending decades as a dismissed back-bencher in, essentially, a caucus of one, Paul’s finally gotten a measure of respect and institutional power. His perennial bills like abolishing the TSA, auditing the fed, and ending the drug wars, are ones he introduces every year, but have only recently been successful in actually starting debates versus being dismissed and ignored out of hand. Colleagues are more likely than at any point in his career to either work with him or get out of his way. And after finally getting a committee posting, he’s able to run hearings on his pet issues of the gold standard and federal reserve, commanding attention. After half a lifetime fighting to even be heard, it’s really only been in the last two years when everything has finally come to fruition in his congressional career. Dr. No had finally come into his own.

So, the end of an era to be sure. America has been the better for him, and for those of us who have tilted at the same windmills, he was a bastion of hope-against-hope, a beacon of sanity-in-an-insane-system. Congress has never seen one like him, and likely never will. He will be missed, and the vacuum that will be created for his absence will be hard, if not impossible, to ever fill again – to the detriment of all of us who love the ideals the country was founded upon.


  1. Some more from Weigel

    Comment by Brad — 7/12/2011 @ 12:41 pm

  2. Comments in the Weigel thread complain about Paul’s lack of a legislative record. To which the appropriate response is, “exactly.”

    Comment by Rojas — 7/12/2011 @ 2:24 pm

  3. I don’t think Audit the Fed would have been included in the financial regulations bill, even watered down, if it wasn’t for Ron Paul’s work on the bill.

    I agree about the vacuum left behind. In the House I don’t think there’s anyone who will be able to step in and fill his shoes in the long term.

    Comment by VALiberaltarian — 7/12/2011 @ 10:54 pm

  4. Nice longer reflection from Weigel. With a great headline:

    Either the Fed Goes, or I Do
    Ron Paul retires from Congress, leaving behind a GOP that finally learned to love him.

    Also, this is true:

    “Paul will leave Congress next year as arguably the most intellectually influential member of the House of Representatives in a generation. (I write “arguably” even though trying to think of a runner-up is a deeply depressing task.)”

    Comment by Brad — 7/13/2011 @ 12:01 pm

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