Two Dr. Nos in the House?

It looks like Dr. William (B. J.) Lawson aka Ron Paul, Jr. just poured an entire can of ass-whoopin’ on Republican Augustus Cho in North Carolina’s Fourth Congressional District GOP primary. Here’s an update from last night from David Weigel:

UPDATE 9:04: I just spoke to B.J. Lawson, who is clobbering Augustus Cho 70-30 with more than 60 percent of the vote counted. “We’re very excited,” he says, although he won’t declare victory until Cho concedes. “We’re ready to run a positive campaign based on Constitutional values.”

Current results show Lawson with 24,410 votes to Cho’s 10,110.

When I was in this congressional district several weekends ago, it was obvious that Lawson was waging a serious sign campaign. People on the ground were talking about GOTV operations and a strong presence at the polling booths. Over a cup of Starbuck’s coffee, Duke’s poli sci chairman Michael Munger accurately predicted this outcome to Bob Barr and me.

Cho has been critical of Lawson’s libertarianism:

He has repeatedly accused Lawson of running as a Libertarian under the guise of the Republican Party.

“When the voters realize that my primary opponent is only running to support the Ron Paul presidency, then the voters will know that they only have one real Republican,” Cho said.

Lawson dismissed Cho’s assertions as negative attacks and said that it was important to him to run a positive campaign that is focussed on the issues.

In the meantime, the Ron Paul campaign continues to plug along, and has reached the million vote threshold.

“He put out a video in which he said victory in the conventional sense was not available to us, but there was still much the campaign could try to accomplish,” Ron Paul 2008 spokesman Jesse Benton said yesterday. “People in the press reported that as him dropping out when he was not dropping out.”

Paul’s campaign has shrunk from a high of more than 150 staffers before Super Tuesday on Feb. 5 to around 15, according to Benton, and his record-breaking Internet fundraising operation has turned off its online ticker. But with more than $4 million in cash on hand, his campaign says there is no good reason to stop.

He is still racking up votes, for one thing, having garnered 16 percent of the vote in Pennsylvania’s Republican primary on April 22. And his supporters are still active at the grass-roots level: GOP officials abruptly canceled the Nevada state convention when it became clear that Paul’s backers outnumbered those for McCain and stood ready to take control of the delegate process.

H/T to John in NC, everyone at United Liberty, Martin Avila, David Weigel and the stack of e-mails in my inbox.

42 Responses to “Two Dr. Nos in the House?”

  1. Eric Dondero Says:

    Nice to see Stephen Gordon and TPW endorsing the libertarian Republican strategy.

  2. Stephen Gordon Says:


    That was news coverage and not an endorsement of any particular strategy. I do have a very favorable view of the candidate, though.

  3. matt Says:

    The conclusion-jump above notwithstanding, if you allow for the use of fractions, there are already two or three “Dr. No’s” in the House.

    Jeff Flake has Ron Paul’s fiscal responsibility emphasis (or perhaps slightly better), so that’s one-third. Paul Broun has at least half of Paul’s libertarianism, most of his fiscal responsibility emphasis, so that’s five-twelfths, Jimmy Duncan and Walter Jones both have Ron Paul’s anti-war stance, as does the lame-duck Wayne Gilchrist, so that’s three guys with one-third of his anti-war stance, adding up (in some silly calculus) to one whole. Barney Frank often agrees with Ron on lifestyle-libertarian issues, so there’s that, too, perhaps worth one-third as well.

    Ron Paul usually has about two allies in the house, they just aren’t always the same person.

  4. Stephen Gordon Says:


    From what I know of Lawson, he would consistently vote the same way Ron Paul does—unlike some of the others you have named. He’s also graduated from medical school, hence the title.

  5. Joey Dauben Says:

    Don’t forget Georgia’s Dr. Paul Broun, another Ron Paul Republican.

    He’s fighting off a primary challenge in July, but Broun did cause an earthquake last year.

    But this is great news out of North Carolina, home to Walter Jones.

    PS: Jimmy Duncan is I believe the congressman from Tennessee. Highly liberal. His voting record is like Arlen Spector’s.

  6. Stephen Gordon Says:


    I didn’t include Dr. Broun because of his position on the Iraq War: “Broun likes Paul, but he doesn’t share Paul’s views on Iraq and won’t make a presidential endorsement.”

  7. disinter Says:

    And the neocon rag “Reason” gets quoted again.

    Cancel My Subscription

  8. matt Says:

    From what I know of Lawson, he would consistently vote the same way Ron Paul does—unlike some of the others you have named. He’s also graduated from medical school, hence the title.

    I knew that my fraction thing had limited relevance, and in any case, it would be cool to have two guys who are so consistently libertarian in the House.

    Much like yourself, the ACU rating is a flawed tool, but even using that yardstick, Jimmy Duncan is rated as being quite conservative. They gave him an 87, which is high, considering that he’s anti-war and they’re biased against that.

  9. matt Says:

  10. Eric Dondero Says:

    Ron Paul is the standard bearer for Populist Pro-Life Conservative, NOT LIBERTARIAN.

    Libertarians are fiscally conservative, socially tolerand and strong on defense.

    Ron Paul is fiscally populist, socially intolerant (of Gays, Mexicans and women who want to control their reproductive rights), and is weak on defense.

    He’s almost the opposite of libertarian.

    Standard-bearers for libertarianism are folks like Butch Otter, Jeff Flake, Tom McClintock, Sarah Palin, and Leon Drolet.

  11. G.E. Says:

    As Andy said elsewhere, unfortunately Dr. Lawson is DR. YES to universal welfare and poverty via the FraudTax.

  12. Trent Hill Says:

    BJ Lawson still has to beat the democrat…lets not forget that.

    Also, Walter B. Jones beat his oppnent by atleast 5%.

  13. matt Says:

    I’ll agree that the FairTax is unwise, but is it so unwise that it’s worth not having an opponent of this evil (and economically stupid) war in order to vote against it?

    I’d say that it isn’t. The warfare state and the money supply issue are the two biggest problems going, and the FairTax, while it is a bad idea, isn’t so bad as to cancel those other two issues out, in my opinion.

  14. disinter Says:

    I’d take Lawson and his misunderstanding of the fair tax over the socialist democrat David Price any day.

  15. Freelancer Says:


    Walter Jones won 60%-40% in his primary.

  16. Eric Dondero Says:

    Boy, I just went to Lawson’s website. He doesn’t sound like a pacifist like Ron Paul at all:

    National security is critical, and we need a strong national defense. We also need to stand in support of our troops who answer their country’s call to duty, both when they are deployed and when they return as veterans.

    As your Congressman, I will insist that we use deadly force in self-defense,

  17. Eric Dondero Says:

    Wow! The more and more you read about BJ Lawson, the more interesting this becomes. He’s no “Ron Paul Republican at all,” as some are claiming. He’s a libertarian-leaning Conservative in the traditional sense.

    Major post coming over at Libertarian Republican blog on Lawson’s win.

  18. Greg Sarnowski Says:

    Eric do you even believe your own bullshit? Everyone’s been fired at one point or another…get over it.

  19. Brian Holtz's Liver Says:


  20. Trent Hill Says:


    Lawson was a leader of the meetup in his district,and is an admitted admirer of Paul and Walter Jones.

  21. Michael Seebeck Says:

    Eric Dondero Spews:

    “May 7th, 2008 at 12:43 pm
    “Boy, I just went to Lawson’s website. He doesn’t sound like a pacifist like Ron Paul at all:

    “National security is critical, and we need a strong national defense. We also need to stand in support of our troops who answer their country’s call to duty, both when they are deployed and when they return as veterans.

    “As your Congressman, I will insist that we use deadly force in self-defense,”

    Eric Cartman Dondero, you forgot the fact that pacifism also includes self-defense. It doesn’t just mean roll over for everyone. Lawson’s defense position is directly on line with libertarian leanings of a strong defense to propery exercise self-defense. Yours is not, and frankly I’m sick and tired of you claiming your neoconliberal views on defense are libertarian, when you are at best clearly wrong and at worst a pathological liar.

    Where you screw up (one of many areas) is you equate a strong defense as a mandate to use it in aggressive and pre-emptive and first-strike OFFENSIVE (as if on offense and not on defense, vs. to take offense, although both apply here) operations that are neither authorized by Congress per the Constitution or allowable under any proper libertarian moral code. “He hit me back first!” is a Family Circus cartoon, not a foreign affairs policy! However, since Bush never seemed to graduate past comic books, his policy makes perfect sense.

    As someone whose career is in defense, specifically intelligence technology, I know damned well the difference. National Defense is a tool of sovereignty and liberty, but how it is used also matters. Right now it is used being badly, and has been since 1945.

    You are to be commended for your time in the military, but that doesn’t make you an expert any more than being a cop makes one an expert on road building.

    So do us all a favor and on things you nothing about (which is almost everything here!) STFU!

  22. G.E. Says:

    Seebeck - Pacifism does NOT include self defense.

  23. Michael Seebeck Says:

    G.E., yes it does. It’s called “self-defense-based neutrality” AKA the Swiss system, AKA “peace through tactical superiority”. You’re making the classic error of thinking of philosophical pacifism, not political pacificism, which I’m referring to.

    There is a word for those who practice pacifism without self-defense: dead.

  24. dodsworth Says:

    Ron Paul has never called himself a pacifist. He has always supported self-defense, hence his support for the initial intervention in Afghanistan. A pacifist would never do that. Period.

    The view is that he is a pacifist just another figment of Dondero’s resentful imagination. I pity the next employer who fires Dondero. He’ll devote the rest of his life trying to discredit him or her by any means necessary.

  25. Michael Seebeck Says:

    Dodsworth, you pity the next guy who fires Dondero because he’ll devote his life trying to discredit him? True, but you really should pity that employer for hiring him in the first place…

  26. G.E. Says:

    Seebeck - What you’re describing is not pacifism. Ghandi was a pacifist. He did not believe in retaliation or even self defense. You are a fucking moron.

  27. Catholic Trotskyist Says:

    I like Ron Paul Republicans, but God’s messinger, the great socialist Democrat DAVID PRICE, will not be forced to give up his seat to put one in. God will vanquish his enemies and curse those who persecute him, just like he is doing for me and for Barack H. Obama.

    It is a good point about Ron Paul having one or two people who often vote with him. Barbara Lee, one of the most socialist members of Congress, has his anti-war ideals. So does Dennis Kucinich, whose noble campaign was derailed by a combination of Mike Gravel, Ron Paul, John Edwards and Barack Obama. Kucinich is a friend of Ron Paul, however, and God has emssaged him with the conclusion that his time is not now. HE WILL HAVE A HIGH POSITION IN THE GREAT OBAMA CHRISTIAN SOCIALIST REVOLUTION.

  28. Michael Seebeck Says:

    G.E., don’t you have a Saturday Night Live Band to attend to?

    Sorry, but reverting to namecalling means you’ve lost credibility.

    And Ghandi was a small-in-stature philosophizer with worn feet and bad breath. He was a super-calloused-fragile-mystic-plagued-by-halitosis. He was also a philosophical pacifist. He’s also dead. My position stands.

  29. Michael Seebeck Says:

    BTW, pacifism is best practiced with calmness, sereneness, and a .45 when necessary. In this world a Smith & Wesson still beats 4 aces, which is unfortunately merely indicative of the combative nature of the human race. We have far to go as an evolutionary species…

  30. Eric Dondero Says:

    Dodsworth is of course, completely wrong. I served as Ron Paul’s Personal Aide for 12 years. I know the guy like the back of my hand, and have had countless discussions with him on evey issue imaginable while driving 5 hours from Houston to San Antonio for instance.

    He’s not only a pacifist on War, he’s also fiercely opposed to the death penalty in any form. He hates guns personally. He hates rap and rock music that’s violent. (Believe it or not Ron is a big fan of elevator music - I shit you not, not just making this up.)

    He opposed the US intervention in WWII even, believing that it was a conspiracy by FDR to get us into the War.

    He does not support violence for any reason whatsoever, and is a religiously based pacifist, almost a Pennsylvania Quaker type.

  31. Eric Dondero Says:

    So Michael Seeback, I take it you opposed the War in Afghanistan? Pre-Emptive strike right?

    You’re one of these who favors the Orange Spandex-wearing Bounty Hunter approach to respond to 9/11 attacks, ‘eh?

    Or, maybe you’re one of these conspiracy types who believes 9/11 was an “inside job.” Cheney was behind it, right?

  32. Eric Dondero Says:

    Yup, Ron Paul “fired me” alright. Fired me with a $10,000 bonus and a lifelong Congressional pension. Oh, and excellent references for future employers.

    If that’s the definition of “firing” please, please give me more of it.

  33. RetroCon Says:

    Eric, the invasion of Afghanistan was, at first, a reactionary strike against those involved in the September 11 attacks. Ron Paul voted for this by the way. Nothing pre-emptive there. Of course, Afghanistan has now become a police action, like Iraq, so while I can’t speak for Mr. Seeback, it is safe to say that being against our continued presence there is not the same as opposing the initial strike.

    As for issuing letters of marque and reprisal against Bin Laden, you’re right- if we did that (which is at least constitutional) we might not ever have caught him.

  34. Michael Seebeck Says:

    Eric Cartman Dondero blustered:

    “So Michael Seeback, I take it you opposed the War in Afghanistan? Pre-Emptive strike right?

    “You’re one of these who favors the Orange Spandex-wearing Bounty Hunter approach to respond to 9/11 attacks, ‘eh?

    “Or, maybe you’re one of these conspiracy types who believes 9/11 was an “inside job.” Cheney was behind it, right?”

    And I laugh back:

    Nope, 9/11 was all a vast conspiracy orchestrated by Rosie O’Donnell and Garrison Keillor to drive Eric Dondero into insanity, get him fired from Ron Paul’s staff, and become a comic relief shill village idiot on TPW.

    And I get serious:

    I was on a USAF base that day and got locked down. I saw two planes in the air that day. One was NEACP. The other was an A-10 Thuderbolt, the best sight to see that day. A person with my name DIED in WTC #2 that day.

    My ties to NYC run very deep. 170 years deep. Civil War Militia deep.

    I was there providing secruity for the local mosque when a local idiot threatened to torch the place. So was the local LP, and their prayer services went on without any problems. Why? Freedom of Religion.

    Islamofascism, my ass!

    I saw the 9/11 plaque for FDNY unveiled at the National Frefighters Memorial the following summer. Pure emotion.

    I was there when the local police caused a riot at the peace rallies in Feb 2003 by firing tear gas into the dispersing crowd. One of two riots of all of the protests on all SEVEN continents (Yes, there was a protest at McMurdo on Antarctica!) involving millions of now-proven-correct people. The other riot was Athens, Greece.

    Chowderheads like you, dolts that share your war beliefs, are responsible for that riot, for the dead in Iraq, and for wrecking this nation emotionally, economically, and internationally.

    Afghanistan was no pre-emptive strike, and if you think so then you’ve been hitting the neocon kool-aid way too much. We just screwed up on how to run it correctly, mainly because the morons in charge wanted to keep the main force away to invade Iraq no matter what. They forgot Warfighting 101:

    1) State the objectives and milestones clearly.
    2) Go in strong, with overwhelming numbers and firepower.
    3) End their world. Achieve the milestones.
    4) Leave.

    In Afghanistan we’re 0 for 4.

    And yes, initially I supported it. Not now, because it was screwed up.

    Orange-Spandex-wearing Bounty Hunters? That sounds like a wrestling tag team, or one of your many delusions.

    As I have said, you are clueless. Whatever clue you ever had died on 9/11.

  35. Michael Seebeck Says:

    RetroCon, you have Afghanistan diagnosed correctly, and I thank you for not speaking for me. However, note that the military hasn’t caught a 6’5” Arab with a kidney machine in those power-deprived mountains either…when the average height of the men there is 5’8” and they don’t have a kidney machine…and with $25M Gold on his head as well.

    Maybe Benzair Bhutto was telling the truth before she got whacked…

  36. Catholic Trotskyist Says:

    Good job Michael Seabeck on this

  37. G.E. Says:

    Seebeck - I’m not calling you a name. You really ARE a fucking moron. Pacifism is an idiotic philosophy. But you can’t redefine it to make it not so. Can we legalize ex-post abortions for this idiot, please?

  38. Michael Seebeck Says:

    G.E., considering that you have never met me and probably never will, your comments are pathetic and based in utter ignorance, which is typical of your general blather on here. I never said I was a pacifist either, so to imply such just means you as usual aren’t paying attention and reading between the lines things that aren’t there. When I write things I choose my words purposefully and carefully, and if you are not exercising the same due diligence then you are truly missing the boat, with no one to blame but yourself and your own biases.

    As for words, history and context are as important as current definition. See “well regulated militia” for a perfect example. I’m sorry that your own understanding of the differences between political and philosophical contexts is so limited.

  39. Michael Seebeck Says:

    BTW, for Dunderhead and CatholicTrotskyite, and anyone else who does it, please spell my name correctly. At the very least you can copy and paste it…

  40. Alex Peak Says:

    If this guy is the real deal, like Dr. Paul is, then more power to ‘im! :)

  41. Kevin Riley O'Keeffe Says:

    Does Lawson have any real chance in the general election?

    Speaking as a Ron Paul supporter, I had no problem with going into Afghanistan, but after we let bin-Laden and much of the rest of the Al-Qaeda (and Taliban) leadership escape into Pakistan due to the incompetence/cowardice/Machiavellian design of the Bush/Cheney administration at Tora Bora in December of 2001, that became a war which we had lost. What I don’t understand is why we’re still fighting a war we lost six-and-a-half years ago.

  42. Libertarian Girl Says:

    “National security is critical, and we need a strong national defense. We also need to stand in support of our troops who answer their country’s call to duty, both when they are deployed and when they return as veterans.”

    Um, that’s basically what Ron Paul always says as well. He is for increased spending on veterans and thinks it’s one of the few things our national government should actually splurge on.

    “Does Lawson have any real chance in the general election?”

    I’m not sure overall how the party lines break down, but the 4th District contains some areas that are VERY liberal, such as Chapel Hill and Durham and Carrboro (which is almost socialist). It also contains some areas, like Hillsborough and Chatham County and Cary, which may be more Republican-leaning. He will have to appeal to independents and Democrats. He has lots of volunteers and has had success reaching out to churches and African-Americans. That will be key, because Durham is almost 50% African-American.

    If he can raise money and get TV and radio ads on the air, I think he should be good. There will be the usual attacks from all sides, of course, just like there is with any candidate.

    I have had many Democrats in this district tell me that they don’t like David Price because he’s not “progressive” enough; they prefer the neighboring congressman Brad Miller. Price has voted for continued appropriations for Iraq, he voted for the Patriot Act and for the Real ID Act and for many other damaging bills, and he has many, many corporate and special interest donors funding him. Democrats may be for him because of the D next to his name, but when they see what he’s really done in Congress, they might not be so impressed. That should work in BJ’s favor. I think it probably really helps that he is against the war, the Republicans would have been nuts to put up a pro-war candidate in this district.

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