Ron Paul will not have a primetime speaking spot at the Republican National Convention, but Mitt Romney and the GOP know they need his enthusiastic, libertarian-leaning supporters to vote for Romney in November. Both have taken steps to ensure Paul supporters feel their views are being welcomed by the party.
An example of this, the GOP platform committee on Thursday adopted language in its draft platform in support of a commission that would look at reinstating the gold standard, which Paul has repeatedly advocated as part of his sound money strategy.
The draft platform, which will be adopted next week, also calls for an audit of the Federal Reserve, which is one of the most important issues to Paul and his supporters. Paul’s son, Rand, the senator from Kentucky, will also have a primetime speaking spot at the convention.
Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), a co-chair of the platform committee told the Financial Times (FT) Republicans were not specifically catering to Paul’s supporters but instead, were on the same page with much of Paul’s views on fiscal issues.
“These were adopted because they are things that Republicans agree on,” Blackburn told the FT. “The House recently passed a bill on this, and this is something that we think needs to be done.”
The FT notes the proposal is reminiscent of the Gold Commission created Ronald Reagan in 1981, 10 years after Richard Nixon severed all ties to the gold standard. The Republican platform in 1980 referred to “restoration of a dependable monetary standard," and the 1984 platform said that “the gold standard may be a useful mechanism."
Sean Fieler told the FT that while the commission could only make recommendations, it would provide a chance to educate Americans and the public about the merits of the gold standard. Fieler is the chairman of the American Principles Project, a conservative group that has pushed for a return to the gold standard. Of course, such a commission would have to address what the ramifications are if the Federal Reserve can not manipulate the money supply and economy by raising or lowering interest rates.
Jack Kemp, who was Paul Ryan’s mentor, also was an advocate of the gold standard.