Last night’s late-evening caucus for Jewish voters who couldn’t participate in the morning caucus due to Shabbat conflicts cranked up the typical anti-Jewish paranoia of the Ron Paul community to a new level. Not only were the conspiracy theorists out in full force on the Ron Paul fan-sites (but I repeat myself), they also showed up en masse at the special caucus, which was hosted at a school run by Gingrich-backer Sheldon Adelson:
Next came about 25 passionate speakers for Paul. In short order, the scene in the auditorium began to feel like a revival meeting for anti-government paranoiacs.
The first one accused the government of “genocide.” Another complained that Paul was the victim of media bias, as evidenced by the fact that in the GOP debates, “When they go on Ron Paul the lighting’s dimmer.” Another accused the government of “using our own men as guinea pigs.”
As Gingrich, across town, was vowing bitterly to continue his campaign, a Paul supporter was testifying: “Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney run the two-legged race together at Bohemian Grove! There’s not a bit of difference between those two puppets! I got one word to describe my support for Ron Paul, and that is: End the Fed!”
And what about all those predictions that Adelson was going to “steal” the caucus for Gingrich (and the alternative theories that the late-evening caucus was a “distraction” so that the establishment could pocket Nevada for Romney)? Shockingly enough, they never came to pass. The Adelson school caucus went overwhelmingly to Ron Paul, by 58 percent. Meanwhile, Romney won the state by a landslide, and his win was projected before the nighttime caucus even began.
As Jonathan wrote last week, the late-evening caucus to allow Orthodox Jews to vote was the right thing to do. But critics were also right to question the ethics and constitutionality of requiring participants to fill out forms saying they missed the earlier voting for religious reasons.
However, Ron Paul’s robocall to his supporters asking them to crash the caucus – and the vile anti-Jewish paranoia about it on the pro-Paul websites – shows exactly why the Republican Party should keep Paul and his fans at arms-length. Should Paul supporters have the right to attend the late-evening caucus, just like the Orthodox Jewish voters it was designed to accommodate? Sure. But they should have done so because they honestly had a voting conflict, not to disrupt the event, and definitely not based on psychotic Jewish conspiracy theories.