They’d each heard mention of Paul from a friend, then turned to the Internet – especially YouTube videos of Paul speeches – to become true believers and local Paul activists.
“He was talking on a deeper level, and that opened my eyes,” says Ms. York, who lives in Henderson, Nev. Now, she says, “I feel like we’re his voice, we’re his legacy.”
Mr. Rivera, from Boca Raton, Fla., says his “awakening” came during the 2008 presidential debates, when he first heard Paul. Since then, he says, Paul has “enlightened” him on the workings of the Federal Reserve, health-care policy, and immigration.
“A lot of people say it’s the end of the Paul movement,” he says. “But I think it’s just the beginning.”
Paul himself agrees that the movement he launched over three runs for the presidency – winning 177 delegates to the Republican National Convention this year, more than anybody except Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum – needs many more people like York and Rivera to succeed.
“It won’t be a true revolution unless the college campuses are aligned with those principles,” he said Sunday at his “We Are the Future” rally.
In one recent way, his influence already is being felt in Congress.
After years of his badgering Federal Reserve Board chairmen and Treasury secretaries in committee hearings, the House (including about 100 Democrats) last month approved a measure ordering an audit of the Fed. In the Senate, there are 29 cosponsors to do the same.