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HOUSTON — Rep. Ron Paul, the iconoclastic, nine-term lawmaker from southeast Texas, took the first step Thursday toward a second, quixotic presidential bid _ this time as a Republican.
Paul filed papers in Texas to create a presidential exploratory committee that will allow him to raise money. In 1988, Paul was the Libertarian nominee for president and received more than 400,000 votes.
Kent Snyder, the chairman of Paul’s exploratory committee and a former staffer on Paul’s Libertarian campaign, said the congressman knows he’s a long shot.
“There’s no question that it’s an uphill battle, and that Dr. Paul is an underdog,” Snyder said. “But we think it’s well worth doing and we’ll let the voters decide.”