Republican Jewish Coalition Bars Ron Paul From Presidential Debate, Saying He's Too "misguided and extreme"
(Reason) -- by Matt Welch --
On Wednesday, Dec. 7, the Republican Jewish Coalition will host a presidential-candidates forum featuring Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, and Rick Santorum. Not invited is the GOP candidate currently polling around third in New Hampshire and second in Iowa: Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas). The explanation:
Paul was not invited to attend the RJC's candidates forum because the organization - as it has stated numerous times in the past - "rejects his misguided and extreme views," said [RJC Executive Director Matt] Brooks.
"He's just so far outside of the mainstream of the Republican party and this organization," Brooks said. Inviting Paul to attend would be "like inviting Barack Obama to speak."
Link via the Twitter feed of an approving Jamie Kirchick.
Brooks gave a more detailed critique of Ron Paul back in May:
"As Americans who are committed to a strong and vigorous foreign policy, we are deeply concerned about the prospective presidential campaign of Congressman Ron Paul. While Rep. Paul plans to run as a Republican, his views and past record place him far outside of the Republican mainstream. His candidacy, as we've seen in his past presidential campaigns, will appeal to a very narrow constituency in the U.S. electorate. Throughout his public service, Paul has espoused a dangerous isolationist vision for the U.S. and our role in the world. He has been a virulent and harsh critic of Israel during his tenure in Congress*. Most recently Paul gave an interview in which he voiced his objection to the recent killing of Osama Bin Laden.
Brooks added, "We certainly respect Congressman Paul's right to run, but we strongly reject his misguided and extreme views, which are not representative of the Republican Party."
Weird punctuation in the original.
So what are these "extreme views"? Over at The Huffington Post, Dovid Efune, the director of The Algemeiner Journal and Gershon Jacobson Foundation, offers an explanation:
"Paul's positions on Israel have been almost uniformly derided. Whilst claiming to be non-interventionist on the issue, he has routinely adopted Arab talking points on Israel, even comparing Gaza to 'a concentration camp.' His Isolationist mantra may appeal to fiscal conservatives, but in the real world its implementation would create a global power vacuum that would likely be filled by supporters of Israel's enemies."
Anti Defamation League National Director Abraham Foxman has a perhaps unintentionally interesting take about Paul, U.S. politics, and Israel:
"with the exception of Ron Paul, there is not much difference between the parties"
And no orthodoxy-definition would be complete without David Frum:
"Of the 8 candidates competing for the Republican presidential nomination, 7 declared themselves intense supporters of the State of Israel, the sole exception being crank no-hoper Ron Paul."
I'm no expert on Ron Paul's Israel views, and I reserve the right to be outraged later by what I don't know now, but what I find interesting here is the namecalling-to-content ratio. Here, let's count it out:
Name-calling: 1) "misguided and extreme," 2) "so far outside of the mainstream," 3) "like...Barack Obama," 4) "will appeal to a very narrow constituency," 5) "dangerous isolationist vision," 6) "uniformly derided," 7) "claim[s] to be non-interventionist," 8) "Isolationist," 9) "differen[t]," 10) "crank."...MORE...LINK