On Wednesday March 14, 2012 presidential hopeful Ron Paul made a stop along his campaign trail in my neck of the woods, Champaign IL. Although I personally did not attend the event, Paul drew quite a crowd while speaking at the University of Champaign Urbana. The event was originally scheduled to be held at a smaller venue on the Fightin’ Illini campus but due to the great demand in tickets, the event was moved to the much larger Huff Hall where roughly 5,000 supporters gathered. It was a great turnout for Paul’s campaign and is perhaps one of the largest thus far in the race.
The event was hosted by Youth for Ron Paul. The GOP party contender has managed to capture a great deal of popularity among the younger voting crowd, much of which Paul attributes to their openness about issues. The crowd was somewhat small but still impressive and greatly diverse as people of all ages were reported rallying for the candidate. The atmosphere was described as being very enthusiastic, friendly, and engaging.
Prior to the event, Paul stopped for a bite at Merry Ann’s Diner, a local eatery and popular hangout for the college crowd. After being introduced by Republican congressman Tim Johnson and the erupting applause had calmed, Paul spoke for about an hour on his stance regarding the issues. Paul emphasized the need to end wars, shrink the size of the government, restore individual liberty, and the importance of giving power back to the people. He also commented that the four-way race among the GOP candidates was positive for the party and beneficial for when the time comes to challenge President Obama. The speech ended with an explosive chant “Ron Paul for President.” Needless to say, the event was a quite a success.
Although I am not a Ron Paul supporter, it is encouraging to see my fellow Americans rallying together in opposition of the current regime infringing on our freedoms and destroying our great nation. More importantly, it is reassuring knowing that Republicans are able to gather in support of a cause in a manner that is respectful and neighborly. An event such as this stands in stark contrast to the obstreperous and unsuccessful ‘Occupiers.’ It is my hope that Americans continue this enthusiasm to end our current tyrannical government and to be engaged in this political battle. We must all stand firmly behind whichever candidate takes the platform against President Obama in November.