Paul campaign: Ron Paul didn't write advertising letter predicting "race war"

Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul, speaks at the CBS News/National Journal foreign policy debate at the Benjamin Johnson Arena, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2011 in Spartanburg, S.C. Republican presidential hopefuls sharply criticized President Barack Obama's efforts to thwart Iran's nuclear ambitions Saturday night as too weak but disagreed in campaign debate whether the United States would be justified in a pre-emptive military strike.
AP Photo/Richard Shiro

Ron Paul's campaign says he did not write an advertising letter that went out under Pau's name 20 years ago that predicted a "coming race war in our big cities" and referenced a "federal-homosexual cover-up on AIDS."

"He did not write this item and they are not his thoughts," Paul's campaign chairman, Jesse Benton, said in an email.

Paul's rise in the polls has brought with it increased scrutiny over a series of racist newslettersthat went out under his name in the 1980s and 1990s. The newsletters claimed that "[o]rder was only restored in L.A. when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks," that nearly all black men in Washington DC "are semi-criminal or entirely criminal" and that AIDS sufferers "enjoy the attention and pity that comes with being sick," among other controversial claims.

Paul reiterated his claim that he did not know who wrote the newsletters and had been unaware of their comments to CBS News and National Journal on Tuesday, saying "everybody knows I didn't write them, and it's not my sentiment." He suggested the resurfacing of the issue reflects "politics as usual."

The advertising letter, which was reported by Reuters on Friday, was a solicitation for people to sign up for Paul's newsletters, and it reportedly appears to carry's Paul's signature at the end. It warns that a currency redesign is part of a government plot to track Americans and claims that Paul had "unmasked" a "plot for world government, world money and world central banking."

You can read the entire letter, which also claims that "the Israeli lobby that plays Congress like a cheap harmonica," here. On the currency redesign, it reads, "The totalitarian bills were tinted pink and blue and brown, and blighted with holograms, diffraction gratings, metal and plastic threads, and chemical alarms. It was a portable inquisition, a paper 'third degree,' to allow the feds to keep track of American cash, and American citizens."

The issue seems unlikely to go away, particularly if Paul wins the Iowa caucuses on January 3. (He currently holds a narrow lead in polls.) On Wednesday, Paul, who has not identified who wrote the newsletters, walked out of an interview with CNN when pressed about them. The Texas lawmaker and his wife were officers of Ron Paul & Associates, the now-defunct company that published the newsletters; the newsletters reportedly earned Ron Paul & Associates nearly one million dollars over one year, according to a 1993 tax document.

On Thursday, USA Today reported that Paul told the Dallas Morning News in 1996 that the claim in the newsletters that 95 percent of black men in Washington, D.C., "are semi-criminal or entirely criminal" was accurate.

Citing a 1992 study, he said, "[g]iven the inefficiencies of what DC laughingly calls the criminal justice system, I think we can safely assume that 95 percent of the black males in that city are semi-criminal or entirely criminal."

And on Friday, the Huffington Post reported a 1987 interview in which Paul said he had worked on newsletters while away from public office in addition to practicing medicine, though that was before the most inflammatory material appeared in newsletters under his name.

"I also put out an investment type of letter because I've always been always fascinated with the hard money school, and been interested in the gold standard, so I put out an investment letter along those lines," he told C-SPAN.

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