Saturday, April 12, 2008

Tarheel Barr

I'm traveling today to Burlington, N.C., to cover the North Carolina Libertarian Party state convention, where Bob Barr will be among the speakers. This will be his first major East Coast appearance since Barr announced last weekend in Kansas City that he was forming a presidential exploratory committee.

Barr got dissed this week by his former Georgia congressional colleague, Newt Gingrich, who said Barr will not have an impact like Ross Perot did in the '90s:
"Ross Perot ran at a particular moment in time when people were really fed up with Washington, but really did not want a liberal Democrat," said Gingrich. "And so he attracted an unusual amount of support. I don't see any evidence that Bob Barr has that kind of following."
Huh? Nobody's "really fed up with Washington" anymore?

Perot's former campaign manager, Russ Verney, is an advisor to the Barr 2008 campaign. He responded to Gingrich:
The attraction of Ross Perot’s candidacy in 1992 was that he was not a part of the Washington establishment. Public sentiment was strong for a 'change from politics as usual.' In the 2008 presidential campaign the buzz word from each candidate is 'change.' But, the eventual Republican and Democratic nominees are not credible aents to change the Washington establishment each candidate has benefited from. . . .
I urge Bob Barr to run for President and give the voters a real choice between ‘politics as usual’ and real 'change.'
Nice of Newt to generate some news that I can use as a "hook" for my story.

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