On Sunday, author Marianne Williamson did something very unusual for a political candidate. She sent out an email to raise funds for one of her Democratic presidential primary opponents — former United States Senator Mike Gravel. The stated purpose of her email was to help increase the number of contributors to Gravel’s campaign by 10,000 so he can meet the contributors threshold for participation in future Democratic primary presidential debates.
After meeting a contributors threshold, along with attaining sufficient support measured in polling, Williamson was included in the first Democratic presidential primary debate in June. Gravel, though, did not qualify to participate.
Williamson’s participation in the debate helped spur interest in her and her campaign. Indeed, Google Trends announced that Williamson was the most searched candidate on the internet during her June presidential debate, even while she was among the candidates with the least amount of speaking time.
From his time in the US Senate when Gravel opposed the Vietnam War through his decades later singing “Give Peace a Chance,” Gravel has provided a voice against empire and militarism.
Back in the 2008 presidential campaign, Gravel largely dedicated his time on the debate stage to relentlessly condemning US military intervention overseas and the military-industrial complex. You can watch here his comments in the first Democratic primary presidential debate of that campaign:
Reprinted with permission from the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.