Ron Paul was declared Mr. Authentic by Canada's Globe and Mail newspaper on Friday.
Though the paper went on to describe the Republican Congressman as a super-long shot to win the GOP nomination to take on Barack Obama, it noted that every time he takes the stage during TV debates he expresses a candour and authenticity that endears him to audiences.
That may be putting it lightly, as Ron Paul's 2012 candidacy has what is likely the most engaged following of any of the race's remaining candidates, though it has been difficult for him to turn that passion into caucus and primary votes thus far.
The Globe & Mail chose a number of lines as its favorites from the Thursday GOP debate in Florida, particularly his dismissal of Newt Gingrich's plans for travelling to the moon, noting his following wisecrack: We should send some politicians to the moon.
Paul, who practiced for many years as a medical doctor, also pleased the Canadian newspaper by saying that he would obviously release his medical records in order to assuage the fears of voters who about the fact that he would be the oldest person elected president in U.S. history if he were elected. Ron Paul will turn 77 on Aug. 20.
And the paper loved his challenge to the rest of the Republican field: I am willing to challenge any of these gentleman up here to a 25 mile bike ride any time of the day in the heat of Texas.
The paper also went on to say that despite his unconventional libertarian ideas--from downsizing the military to eliminating the Federal Reserve--he has a wide base of support within certain key demographics:
Mr. Paul has consistently won the support of independent voters and under-30s, the Globe & Mail wrote. They were key to his strong second place finish in the New Hampshire primary on January 10th behind winner Mitt Romney.
The paper cited a Thursday Wall Street Journal and NBC News poll that showed that Ron Paul polls at 12 percent nationally among registered Republican voters, while Gingrich pulls in 37 percent, Romney gets 28 percent and Santorum notches 18 percent.
The paper did not get into details about why Ron Paul, who is running for the White House for the third time, is having a hard time breaking out of the fourth-place spot nationally.
But other pundits, including Brian Williams, the moderator of the Jan. 23 Florida debate, have tried their mightiest to imply that he will never rise to the top tier, and will eventually have to drop out.
In response to a suggestion by Williams that such a fate will befall Ron Paul, the candidate responded thusly: “To say that there has only been three races and talk about not being electable, I think is a bit of a stretch.
The response showed some of the spunk Paul is beloved for, and defenders have been coming forward with frequency in recent days. For instance, Sarah Palin has said in recent das that Ron Paul is the only one of the Republican pack who is concerned with reducing the federal deficit, The State Column reported Friday.