In this corner, a libertarian, tea party hero who ran several campaigns as a candidate for US president on the Republican ticket. And in that corner, a progressive icon of the left who also ran several campaigns for the US presidency but on the Green Party ticket.
One might think the two men, seemingly ideologically opposed to one another, would rather argue than help one another.
However, on Wednesday’s broadcast of Freedom Watch on the Fox Business channel, Judge Napolitano sat down for an amiable interview with Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) and Ralph Nader to discuss a progressive-libertarian alliance in the 112th session of respective chambers in Congress.
Nader, who has recently called this coalition “the most exciting new political dynamic” in the US today, explained that it works well because both groups stand against corporatists who believe government should be run in the interests of corporations.
“I believe in coalitions,” Rep. Paul echoed. “They talk about we need more bipartisanship, and I say we have too much bipartisanship because the bipartisanship we have here in Washington endorses corporatism.”
Paul added that he agreed with Nader on a host of issues, such as cutting the US military’s budget, ending undeclared US wars overseas, restoring civil liberties and civil rights by dumping from the Patriot Act, and withdrawing from the NAFTA and World Trade Organization agreements.
“I think we should come together and work together, and I think we can,” he said, noting that the coalition had previously worked on deficit financing solutions.
Rep. Paul and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), the most conservative and most liberal members of their respective chambers, joined forces last session to fight for an audit of the Federal Reserve, a private institution that handles America’s monetary policy, which Nader explained is under no legal control of Congress.
“The banks fund the Fed,” Nader said. “It doesn’t go through the congressional appropriations process as it should under our constitution.”
Paul is the current chairman of a congressional subcommittee that would conduct oversight on the US Federal Reserve bank
He explained, however, that he would not have the subpoena power to force Tim Geithner, US Treasury Secretary, and Ben Bernanke, the chairman of the Federal Reserve, to testify under oath about the Fed’s policies. That power is in the hands of the chairman of the full committee, he said.
“But that doesn’t mean we’ll go lightly on digging up for this information because Ralph is absolutely right on this thing,” Paul said.
When asked, Nader stopped short of endorsing a full repeal of the Federal Reserve.
“The Fed, whatever it does, should be a cabinet-level, accountable institution,” he proposed instead.
Paul also reiterated his stance that spending on overseas bases in US military’s budget should be cut and that US troops should be brought home.
This video is from FoxNews’ Freedom Watch, broadcast Jan. 19, 2011, as snipped by Mox News.
With reporting by Stephen C. Webster.