(Ed. Note: At the rally, Rep. Ron Paul said he'd cut $1 billion from the federal budget in the first year of his presidency, a relatively small amount in terms of the federal budget. His campaign's website says he'd actually cut $1 trillion in his first year as president.)
SEATAC--Ron Paul was two-thirds through his rally Thursday night when one of the people in the breathing-room-only crowd blurted out what fellow supporters were already thinking.
"You're the greatest American, Paul!" the voice yelled from the crowd at the DoubleTree Inn, prompting a chorus of cheers.
"I'm delivering the greatest message," said the Republican presidential candidate, prompting an even louder cheer from supporters who packed all of the hotel's ballroom.
On Thursday night, the messages were simple and clear. The never-bashful GOP hopeful electrified supporters with talk of more individual freedom and smaller government.
"The solutions are out there," Paul said. "A revolution is really going on."
In preparation for Super Tuesday, as well as the March 3 Republican caucus for Washington state, Paul stumped earlier in Vancouver before stopping in the South Sound, explaining how years of government intrusion into individual freedoms have made the U.S. weaker, and that he would change that if elected.
"The richest countries in the world have always been the free-est countries in the world," he said.
Among his priorities if elected: decommissioning the Federal Reserve Bank, pulling U.S. troops from other countries and, most importantly, trimming a trillion dollars from the federal budget during his first year.
The crowd of supporters was a show in itself. The rally had a much different vibe than the visit from fellow GOP candidate Rick Santorum in nearby Tacoma earlier this week, when several protestors with the Occupy Tacoma movement tried to hijack the show.
On Thursday night, the crowd was decidedly in Paul's favor.
"Ron Paul Stole My Heart," read one woman's sign.
"Freedom!" another young supporter shouted.
"End the Fed!" still others shouted.
The crowd consisted of an array of supporters, from college students to seniors to parents with young children. Claims among attendees circulated that several thousand had attended the event.
To all of them, Paul encouraged them to "show the other Washington" that people from the Northwest would show their desire for change at the polls.