Ron Paul

Ron Paul is a longtime libertarian-minded Republican U.S. Congressman from Texas.

He is currently running for the 2012 Republican nomination for President, and placed third in the Iowa caucuses.

Paul ran unsuccessfully for the 2008 Republican nomination for President. His campaign, initially considered a vanity run with no real impact, caught fire on the Internet and set an impressive array of records -- not least of which was the largest one-day fundraiser in political history, a feat that finally caught the eye of mainstream media.

Paul was the 1988 presidential candidate of the Libertarian Party. He had already served four terms in Congress and switched to the Libertarian Party after he lost the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate to Phil Gramm.

In 1996, Paul switched back to the Republican Party, and ran successfully for his old Congressional seat. He defeated the incumbent Republican in the primary and Democratic and Libertarian challengers in the general election. Although he ran and won as a Republican, he specifically did not resign his Libertarian Party membership. Once back in Congress, he continued to push libertarian goals.

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