Would greater media focus on Ron Paul’s presidential candidacy help it or hurt it?
Ron Paul and his fans have been complaining for months that the mainstream media aren’t paying enough attention to his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination, even when polls show him doing fairly well.
This neglect is due mostly to the conventional political wisdom that a doctrinaire libertarian like Paul has virtually no chance of winning the GOP nod.
Jonathan Chait carries the argument even further, CONTENDING that Paul actually has benefited from less than intense media attention:
It would be nearly impossible to imagine the Republican Party nominating a candidate who spent years and years publishing a racist newsletter and has deep associations with the fringe far right. (Here he is speaking to the John Birch Society on the occasion of its 50th anniversary.) It would be even more impossible to imagine the Party nominating a candidate who favors total withdrawal from world affairs and takes a Chomsky-ite line on American power. The notion that the Party might nominate a candidate who does both these things is totally preposterous…
Paul’s supporters seem to believe that the media ignoring him is the only thing keeping him from challenging for the Party nomination. More likely, it’s the only thing that’s allowed his candidacy to progress to this point. If more people actually understood the full scope of Paul’s fringe-right views, a huge portion of his support would peel off.