LIE:

Ron Paul supports people breaking the law by not paying their taxes (such as Ed and Elaine Brown).

 

TRUTH

Ron Paul opposes the tax laws and the 16th amendment, and wishes to abolish the IRS and personal income tax through legal means. He has never even met the Browns.

 

Among the reasons Ron Paul has garnered support, in addition to his stances in foreign policy, is his desire to abolish the Internal Revenue Service, believing that taxing someone on their income is unconstitutional, and amounts to the government presuming ownership over people’s lives. As a byproduct, Dr. Paul has been accused of condoning the actions of Ed and Elaine Brown, because of comments he has made when asked about that couple’s situation. For background Ed and Elaine Brown are a Plainfield, New Hampshire couple convicted of federal tax evasion back in January 2007. The couple has refused to surrender to authorities, citing that there is no law requiring citizens to pay taxes to the IRS, resulting in a standoff at their home.

 

During a videotaped interview for a website conducted by Lee Rogers, Ron Paul was asked about what his thoughts were on their situation. Here is an excerpt from that interview shown below. Part 1 of this interview is also available here (conducted in June 2007).

 

 

 

Now before continuing, it should be noted that Ron Paul has never met or directly spoken with the Browns. He also doesn’t make any advocation to break the law. Ron Paul simply states that the tax laws are unjust, and that it sometimes becomes necessary for people to challenge those laws, as the Browns have done. He also recognizes that certain methods of challenging unjust laws may result in going to jail. Supporting someone’s form of protest is not the same as joining in their protest. Ron Paul has long south to abolish these tax laws by working with the Congress and abolishing the IRS.

 

Days later, Dr. Paul was interviewed by Neil Cavuto on Fox News, regarding this same issues. While not specifically mentioning the source (the interview just mentioned), Fox News clearly was referring to this interview, and attempted to make the claim that the Congressman supports Ed and Elaine Brown, and anyone else that refuses to pay their taxes, comparing them to Ghandi and Martin Luther King, Jr. (an apparent misquote of the previously mentioned interview). Here is the interview that took place with Mr. Cavuto.

 

 

 

It would appear that Fox News misrepresented or misunderstood Dr. Paul’s prior comments going into this interview. As clarified, Dr. Paul has never advocated the use of violence or lawlessness to achieve this goal. Only legal means. While he does support their actions as their protest against unjust laws, he has never advocated these actions. He has also pointed out that as these laws are unconstitutional, people are put in the position of having to violate one set of laws in order to uphold other laws.

 

Congressman Paul has been called “the Taxpayer’s Best Friend” by the National Taxpayer’s Union.