BERKELEY (CBS SF) - Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul on Thursday reflected on his relationship with the Bay Area, a region he said has always supported him despite its famously left-leaning tendencies.
Paul spoke Thursday evening at a rally at the University of California at Berkeley, following a fundraising luncheon in San Francisco late Thursday morning.
The presidential longshot addressed the mostly young and raucous UC Berkeley crowd about the core principles of his campaign, including a smaller government and ending wars.
Paul’s UC Berkeley visit was organized by the campus group Students for Liberty.
Doug Sovern’s Full Interview With Ron Paul:
Paul said his libertarian beliefs fit well with the area’s “live and let live” lifestyle.
“I don’t make a judgment on the values,” he said. “When people use their personal liberties and personal resources, I’m very open to how people act.”
Full Ron Paul Interview With Doug Sovern:
Paul, who represents a district in Texas in the U.S. House of Representatives, first ran for president as a Libertarian in 1988.
San Francisco and Silicon Valley tech companies have financially supported Paul’s campaign this time around, he said.
Those contributors are “people who care about privacy and technology and getting the government out of your way,” he said, adding that many supported his strong stance against the Stop Online Privacy Act in Congress.
Paul said young people have been among the most fervent supporters of his campaign because “they seem to respond very favorably to the message of individual liberty and the free market.”
He said, “They think the government should stay out of our lives, and shouldn’t tell us what to do with our private lives” and said his desire for the U.S. to pull out of conflicts overseas also strikes a chord with young people.
“We’re involved in too many places overseas, and spend too much money,” he said.
Although former Gov. Mitt Romney is currently leading the Republican race by a wide margin of delegates, Paul said he plans to take his campaign all the way to the party’s convention in Florida this August.
“They’ve only just really started counting the delegates … many states takes a couple of months,” he said. “We’re waiting to find out how many we’re going to get.”
Paul also denied speculation that he might run as a third-party candidate in the November election.
“I’m not making any plans for that,” he said.
Paul also visited UCLA on Wednesday and said he might return to California in May.
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