Paul Revels in GOP Rebel Role

Debate underlines contrasts between firebrand and fellow candidates
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 11, 2008 5:31 PM CST
Supporters for presidential hopeful Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, hold signs in front of a sand sculpture of the candidates outside the Myrtle Beach Convention Center prior to a Republican presidential debate...   (Associated Press)
camera-icon View 5 more images

(Newser) – Fox relented and let GOP maverick Ron Paul join in last night’s South Carolina presidential debate, and the excitable libertarian made the most of the opportunity, the Los Angeles Times notes. Paul provided his characteristic stark contrast with the mainstream candidates and several of the evening's high points, as he witheringly cataloged the party's failings over the last 8 years to live up to what he considers conservative standards.

When Fox's Carl Cameron challenged his electability, an irate Paul responded with a sarcastic attack on the inability to take seriously a candidate who supports fiscal conservatism and opposes the war: "Let me see if I get this right," Paul said, "We need to borrow $10 billion from China and then we give it to Musharraf, who is a military dictator, who overthrew an elected government. And then we go to war, we lose all these lives promoting democracy in Iraq. I mean, what's going on here?" The tirade drew a sustained ovation.