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Ron Paul to speak Friday at local tea party rally; To appear at event in East Aurora

Rep. Ron Paul, the Texas Republican running for president, is slated to speak at a tea party rally Friday evening in East Aurora.

James Ostrowski, of the local Tea Party Coalition, said Paul will appear at the event from 4 to 7 p.m. in the American Legion Post, One Legion Drive.

He said the rally -- free and open to the public -- is meant to persuade tea party sympathizers and all voters to consider Paul in the upcoming presidential contest.

"We think he has the most conservative record of supporting small government and fiscal conservatism over a very long time," Ostrowski said. "He's been so right for so long on so many different issues, so we feel it's the right time for the tea party to coalesce around one candidate."

Ostrowski also is scheduled to address the rally, as are other tea party figures such as Iraq War veteran David Bellavia and former East Aurora Mayor David J. DiPietro, who pointed out that the local Tea Party Coalition was the first such group to endorse Paul this year.

Paul ran for president on the Libertarian line in 1988 and in the GOP primaries in 2008 but has been registering significant numbers in some polls this year with the rise of tea party supporters who hold similar views.

He has emerged as one of the foremost voices for limited government in Congress and, according to his website, was a key member of the Gold Commission, advocating a return to a gold standard for U.S. currency.

An Air Force veteran and medical doctor who has delivered more than 4,000 babies, he also has voted consistently to lower or abolish federal taxes.

Paul is also in town for a family reunion, according to his brother, Jerrold D. Paul of East Aurora. Jerrold Paul has lived in Western New York for 40 years.

The latest RealClearPolitics average of several major polls shows Paul with 8.2 percent of the Republican vote, trailing leader Mitt Romney with 21.6 percent, Michele Bachmann with 13.2 percent, Rick Perry with 12.6 percent, Sarah Palin with 12.1 percent and Rudy Giuliani with 11 percent.

Paul's campaign office did not return a call seeking comment.