Care To Join Us On The Bandwagon?

1195052712Greetings from the Ron Paul bandwagon. Last week, we were pretty much the only media-type people who openly admired the Texan’s huge fundraising bonanza and his commitment to fiscal conservatism. Today, we’ve noticed it’s getting a little crowded up here.

The Globe’s Scot Lehigh is amazed that the candidate appealed to high schoolers in New Hampshire.

. . . [T]he kids flock around him, seeking autographs. Later that afternoon, Paul earns another enthusiastic reception from a capacity crowd at the University of New Hampshire.

So what explains Paul’s appeal?

It’s almost as if Lehigh is having the epiphany the Grinch has when the Whos start singing in Whoville. “His appeal came without consultants! It came without polls! It came without endorsements, kissed babies, or selling his soul!”

After a painful reference to the 2003 hit “Stacy’s Mom,” Lehigh points out that Paul’s curmudgeonly stance on issues that are important to the young voters could eventually be his undoing.

On Darfur, his noninterventionism takes on hues of hard-hearted realism. He is unwilling to spend tax dollars “on the pretense that we are going to help people in Darfur,” he says at UNH. . .

Queried on global warming, Paul makes it clear that he is agnostic on the issue. Afterward, Erin Thesing, a UNH sophomore, presses him on the matter, telling him she lies awake at night worrying about climate change.

“If you want to lay awake at night worrying about something, worry about the value of the dollar,” replies Paul.

This is why we love Ron Paul. Had Hillary Clinton or Mitt Romney been on the receiving end of that question, there would have been equivocation and talking points. With Paul, you get what he honestly thinks. And he sounds like our grandpa when he talks about the gold standard and the value of the dollar. It’s comforting.

The Internet continues to embrace him, as well. The Baltimore Sun reports that “Ron Paul” was the most searched political term in October, and that his website got the same amount of traffic as Hillary Clinton’s. A recent college graduate in Texas created a spoof Ron Paul/Stephen Colbert 2008 MySpace page, while pollster John Zogby thinks Paul could pull in about 15 percent of the primary vote in New Hampshire. And we’ll continue to follow our fringe candidate’s progress as we get closer to the primaries.