By Ben Smith
This Tuesday, Republican frontrunner Rick Perry sent out a statement questioning Rep. Ron Paul’s fealty to Ronald Reagan. On Wednesday, he attacked Paul from the stage. And on Thursday, photographs circulated of him jamming his finger into the mild-mannered libertarian’s face.
This may be the best thing that’s ever happened to a Paul presidential campaign, and it wasn’t entirely an accident. The Ron Paul campaign set out to bait Perry into a confrontation, a tactical move that’s part of a quiet but real shift from Paul’s earlier, inward-looking presidential campaigns toward an effort that has added a layer of experience and mainstream Republican strategy to the passionate, deep-pocketed, but limited Paul grassroots.
The crucial experience may have been Rand Paul’s 2010 Senate race, which introduced the Paul team to the Republican — and to the notion that a campaign can be more than a statement.
“There’s been a growth in general in the Ron Paul organization – and that includes the Ron Paul family and that includes Rand Paul,” said Paul’s campaign chairman, Jesse Benton, a longtime aide who’s married to Paul’s granddaughter, in an interview from Lake Jackson, Texas, where Paul is shooting ads today. “The fact that we were able to win in Rand’s campaign shows people what we can do and what it takes to win... (Read the full article)
Source: Politico, via the Ron Paul Campaign