Ron Paul vs. Michele Bachmann: A Leader or A Cheerleader

Recently Jones County Ron Paul supporter Roger Kistler attended both a Ron Paul and a Michele Bachmann campaign event in the same day.   In this letter Kistler provides an interesting comparison of the styles of those two candidates.

Dear Jones County Ron Paulers,

Yesterday I took the day off from my work. I’m glad I did. I learned a lot and I would like to share some of that with you.

At noon I attended the Ron Paul “meet and greet” in Cedar Rapids. At four o’clock I attended a Michele Bachmann event in Maquoketa. The difference between the two campaign events was stark. I am convinced more than ever before that Ron Paul should be our nation’s next chief executive.

At the Ron Paul meet and greet, people came into the meeting at the Marriott Hotel and either stood talking to one another or sat and chatted with the person sitting next to them until Dr. Paul was introduced. Before Dr. Paul began speaking the only sound was that of people talking to one another. At the Bachmann event held in the parking lot of Flapjacks restaurant, driving music was playing over loudspeakers as the people arrived. I chatted briefly with the lady next to me but really there were very few conversations taking place.

Bachmann campaign signs and stickers were freely passed out. Ron Paul had campaign signs as well. They were neatly stacked by the exit and could be picked up on the way out.

The Bachmann campaign was literally staged. They set up a tent and a stage probably twenty feet long in front of the audience with Ms Bachmann’s campaign bus serving as a back drop. On the stage were 8 chairs with people seated facing the audience holding Bachmann signs. Ron Paul stood at a hotel podium by himself.

Not counting campaign staff, I counted between 140 and 150 people at the Ron Paul event. I counted about 60 people at the Bachman event. I found it interesting that the front page of the Dubuque Telegraph Herald today reported Bachmann having “200 Iowans” present.

The numbers in attendance did not impress me as much as their ages. The Ron Paul group was by and large younger. I was on the older side of the age curve. The Bachmann crowd was older. I was on the younger side of that crowd’s age curve.

The messages of the two candidates were as different as night and day. Dr. Paul identified problems with the country as he saw them and then proceeded to explain how they could be solved in the political arena. The audience enthusiastically but politely applauded to statements to which they obviously agreed. Bachmann on the other hand was full of questions. “Do you think Washington is spending too much of your money?” “Do you want to get rid of Obama care?” Depending upon the question, the audience responses were either a loud, vocal “Yes” or “No” occasionally accompanied by spastic applause.

Dr. Paul repeatedly referenced the US Constitution often citing specific article and section numbers. Michele Bachmann mentioned the Constitution once then added, “By the way that’s what we should follow … the Constitution.”

After Dr Paul completed his prepared remarks, he fielded questions. Michele Bachmann did not. She spoke for a little over 15 minutes and that was it. The questions Dr. Paul was asked were very thoughtful and specific. He spoke for probably 30 – 40 minutes.

On cue the music started again and from the elevated stage Ms Bachmann quickly began shaking hands as the people reached up to her while she occasionally reached down to scribble an autograph. When Ron Paul stopped talking, the crowd members started talking to each other again. Dr Paul positioned himself by the door and one by one, face to face, shook hands, fielded one-on-one questions, posed for photos and signed autographs for those interested.

I think my day could be summarized in the following way. One campaign provided thoughtful insight and those present were obviously intent on learning. The other campaign had the depth of and sounded much like a junior high pep rally.

On the way home I kept wondering, “As a nation, are we going to elect a leader or a cheerleader?” If you haven’t done it yet, get your tickets for the Ames Straw Poll at so you can vote for a leader August 13.

Ron Pauler Mike Angelos gave me a Ron Paul / Michele Backman comparison sheet. You will find it attached. Feel free to make copies and share it with your friends and especially with those who don’t really know much about Ron Paul. Thanks Mike.

It was good seeing all the Jones County Ron Paulers at the Cedar Rapids meet and greet. Keep up the good work.

Yours in liberty,
Roger Kistler,
Jones Co. chair
Ron Paul Presidential Campaign
Olin, Iowa


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