"To be, or not to be?" is the question that Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas) should be asking himself right now. Or in reality, the question he should be asking is, "Should I go with my core belief system and throw my support behind Libertarian presidential hopeful Gary Johnson, who I ideologically agree with, or continue to side with the GOP in the nomination process?" This is a question that Paul has been hearing from many of his supporters I'm sure, but it's a question that needs to be addressed.
Johnson (R-NM) is the former Republican governor of New Mexico prior to being term-limited out of office after two terms. While in office, he showed the best record of fiscal responsibility of all governors across the country, with astonishing records such as the simple fact that he vetoed more bills as governor than all other governors across the country during his time in office. In 2011, Johnson announced that he was running on the GOP ticket for POTUS, and he was considered at best "the dark horse" of the race. After not being able to gain any traction in the GOP presidential primary, he decided to take his campaign platform to the Libertarian Party and run for president on their ticket (in reality his views coincide with the Libertarian Party a lot more than with the GOP). It is rumored that Johnson may be able to get a podium at the national presidential debates coming this fall, but it may take the support and endorsement of Ron Paul to push his polling numbers above the minimum 5% polling nationally.
Ron Paul also decided to run for POTUS back in 2011, but after a somewhat lackluster effort in the GOP primary (he won zero states, and his foreign policy views were bashed by the right-wing party base) Paul seems to have backed out of the race and has yet to endorse any other candidate for president. In a perfect world, since Paul and Johnson share very similar Libertarian leanings it would make sense for Ron Paul to endorse Gary Johnson. In reality, Ron Paul is still a Congressman with political motivations. Party politics is only making the realm of politics worse, and this is just another example of it rearing its ugly head.
If Ron Paul really wanted to make a change for the better this 2012 presidential election, he would put his chips and support behind the candidate that he can agree with most: Gary Johnson. With Paul's formal support, there's no telling just how high Johnson's polling numbers would soar. The GOP has not treated Ron Paul with the respect that he deserves after many years of diligent public service, so why should he continue to cave in and fold to party brass? The GOP is never going to fully support Ron Paul; his supporters know it, his opponents know it, and it's about time that Ron Paul realized it before it is too late. It is time for Ron Paul to make a stand in the political arena, and in order to do so he should lend his total support to the only candidate left who he can agree with ideologically.
Editor's Note: This article originally outlined that Ron Paul is seeking re-election this Novemeber, a statement which has since been edited out. Paul plans on retiring this November.