Republican Rep. Ron Paul is planning a trip to Iowa later this month, an organizer there confirms, as he considers a run for president again in 2012.
Paul will speak at the Iowa Memorial Union at the University of Iowa on Oct. 29, according to Young Americans for Liberty organizer and college student Ani DeGroot. Iowa’s caucuses will kick off the presidential nominating contest in 2012.
Paul, whose spokespeople did not return requests for comment on the Iowa trip, told The Daily Caller this summer that he hadn’t decided if he would challenge President Obama for re-election, but predicted that Republicans will be more open than they were in 2008 to nominating a libertarian-minded candidate. “I think there’s no doubt about it,” Paul said during that interview.
DeGroot said the Young Americans for liberty organization reached out to Paul to request his presence. While she said students there are enthused by a Paul presidential candidacy, the visit is not just about that. “It’s not focused on 2012,” she said.
But 2012 is certainly on Paul’s mind. As for what it would take to get him to run, Paul has maintained that he’d be more likely to run if the economy is still in shambles and troops are still bogged down in Afghanistan.
“I suspect the economic crisis is going to get a lot worse,” he told TheDC. “If it is, than the country becomes even more open to free-market alternatives. And I think that is going to stir my interest.”
If past attempts at Paul running for president are any indication of when he will make his intentions known, in 2007, he announced the formation of a presidential exploratory committee in January.
At the Iowa event, Paul will speak in a room that can accommodate 1,100, but another room will likely be used if more show up, DeGroot said.