Ron Paul Revolution Rally Draws 800

Ron Paul Revolution Rally Draws 800

October 1, 2007

Even a half hour after Ron Paul‘s “Revolution” rally ended in downtown Manchester, there was a crowd larger than other candidates could only hope to draw. The campaign estimated that as many as 800 people showed up as the Texas congressman kicked off a canvassing effort in New Hampshire’s three largest cities.


The campaign gave out buttons asking: “Who is Ron Paul?” But who are Ron Paul’s supporters? “I think they’re new to the process,” said Paul’s son, Rand Paul. “We definitely have Democrats that are crossing over, Libertarians crossing over, Independents crossing over. And I think the people that come out are definitely gonna vote.”

Rand Paul said that every day he’s surprised at “how big” his father’s campaign has gotten. Last week, they asked supporters to raise $500,000. “They passed that in three days, and now we’re asking them to raise a million,” Rand Paul said. By Sunday, they had done just that. And Rand Paul said his father might end the third fundraising quarter with more cash on hand than most of the other Republicans. “We may have more money on hand than Romney if you subtract what he’s given himself,” he said.

Paul rejected a comparison to Howard Dean‘s Internet fueled 2004 campaign, which fizzled by the time votes were actually cast. “My dad has been going around the country for 30 years, and has a following,” Paul said. “It’s definitely a committed core. Howard Dean didn’t have that cohesive message and a philosophy.” What Dean and Paul have in common is their anti-war message. And Paul said his father’s stance makes him the Republican with “the best chance of getting independent voters over.”


WMUR-TV To Ron Paul: Drop Dead?

October 1, 2007

Once again New Hampshire’s state-wide TV station apparently declined to cover GOP presidential candidate Ron Paul (R-Tex), even though his well-attended “Family Day” rally took place this past weekend in Manchester where WMUR is headquartered.

Sources close to the rally claimed that WMUR cameras and reporters were nowhere to be seen. The seeming lack of coverage by the TV station is notable, because New Hampshire’s newspapers do not reach the state’s several million citizens the way its single, state-wide TV station can. In one or two segments, WMUR 9 – an ABC affiliate – could educate hundreds of thousands of viewers about Ron Paul’s libertarian-constitutionalist message. Additionally, local coverage has a chance of being picked up by the national ABC network. But that coverage has, according to Ron Paul sources, been minimal thus far.

When it came to the recent Family Walk, the WMUR station was called numerous times, according to sources close to the campaign. The answer volunteers and staffers received was always the same: The station does not select news stories until the day of the event. In this case, WMUR eventually made a decision to cover presidential candidates John McCain and John Edwards, and reportedly two other candidates as well.

FMNN came into the possession of an email making the rounds in New Hampshire that stated WMUR actually carried a segment “on four candidates having events in NH this weekend.” But not Ron Paul. WMUR’s lack of enthusiasm for covering the candidate might be more understandable had not 30 of Ron Paul’s children and relatives shown up to campaign for him on Saturday. At nearly the same time, last-minute Ron Paul donations totalled over $1 million, and he is moving up in the New Hampshire polls.

The confluence of news events: the Family Walk, the fund raising, Ron Paul’s headway in New Hampshire would all bode well for signficant news coverage. Yet none was forthcoming from New Hampshire’s only statewide station.

C-Span, as FMNN has reported, covered some of the New Hampshire events that Ron Paul participated in over the weekend, and this makes the lack of coverage by WMUR all the more puzzling.

“Is it bias?” mused one top level Ron Paul volunteer. “Whether or not they approve of Ron Paul, they should make a pretense of being even-handed.”

This volunteer and others said that the WMUR execs that had answered the phone had been cold, short, “even rude.” And she added, “Maybe they were getting a lot of calls. But they still didn’t respond. They never have. In this case they said they were ‘too busy.'”

A search of WMUR archives reveals that the few available clips on Ron Paul are mostly debate-related. The most recent features Ron Paul explaining how the war on drugs has failed, and is from the recent PBS debate. Yet WMUR’s political coverage is seemingly recognized as outstanding. Wikipedia had this to say about WMUR 9:

During election seasons, WMUR is well-known for organizing and producing some of the higher profile candidate debates for ABC News, as well as CNN, before the first United States presidential primary. On March 9, 2005, as a result of its coverage of political events, the station won the “USC Annenberg Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Television Political Journalism” for the third consecutive time.

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