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ST. PAUL, Minnesota – Texas Rep. Ron Paul said Tuesday that he was told he could go to the Republican convention floor under restricted conditions, but he'd have to pick up his pass at the gate and he couldn't have any guests."Republican congressmen should have a pass to the floor but they said, 'Your pass will be at the gate and we'll pick it up when you leave and you can't take anybody with you," Paul said on CNN's "American Morning."Supporters of the former Republican presidential candidate are holding their own counter convention in Minneapolis. The "Rally for the Republic" marks the official start of Paul's new political action group, the "Campaign for Liberty."More than 10,000 tickets to the rally have been sold. Tucker Carlson, Jesse Ventura and Grover Norquist are among the speakers who will appear before Paul, who is scheduled to address the rally at 8:05 p.m. ET.Paul said his rally will be a positive event that focuses on the issues he thinks other Republicans ignore -"the spending problems, the deficit, our foreign policy, our national defense, our monetary policy.""We're Republicans - we believe in limited government and personal liberties. We ought to be talking about these things," he said.Paul has been critical of presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain and Barack Obama, the Democratic nominee.Asked if there is anything to like about the presidential contenders, Paul said "not a heck of a lot.""I like it when they shift their positions, but then you don't know where they are," he said sarcastically. "John McCain used to be for taxes - now he's against taxes. Obama talks about less military intervention, but he's the first one to say we should increase the troops in Afghanistan."Paul did have kind words for Sarah Palin, McCain's vice presidential pick. He said he was "delighted" to hear she said positive things about him in a recent interview."I hope she puts the right kind of pressure on our platform," he said.
Ron Paul turns down appeal to endorse John McCain and heightens the possibility that he will run as an Independent.Rumor has it he will announce his Independent run for President on September 12th or 13th.Paul is waiting for the 911 remembrance to be over which would shadow any announcement made now.
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