cat.thumbnail.jpgThis is old news, but it’s utterly hilarious:

Ron Paul is moving his so-called Rally for the Republic from the University of Minnesota’s Williams Arena to the Target Center in Minneapolis.

In an e-mail to supporters, Paul said he made the move after measuring the excitement and enthusiasm of his supporters. That means the campaign expects 15,000 people to fill the arena, 4,000 more than could have attended at the university.

"We would not have put all of our cards on the table if we weren’t very very confident that we would fill the Target Center," said Jesse Benton — the spokesman for Paul’s Campaign for Liberty group.

Why is this hilarious? Because the 15,000 figure given in the MPR piece is almost certainly an underestimate. In reality, the Target Center can hold more people than the Xcel Center, which is the venue where the Republican National Convention will be held at the same time as the Paul rally.

With an official capacity of 20,500 persons when used as a basketball arena, the Target Center holds nearly 2,500 more folks than the Xcel, which officially weighs in at 18,064 (though they did shoehorn over 20,000 in for Shania Twain in 2003, using a configuration that the RNC is unlikely to emulate). Even set up for concerts, which is probably how the Paul people will have it configured, it can hold as many as 19,500 persons — nearly 1,500 more than the Xcel’s official capacity.

Does anyone doubt that Ron Paul can fill the Target Center? Especially with former Minnesota governor Jesse Ventura as one of the headliners? Hell, even Tucker Carlson is going to be there.

So how will the national press handle this? If Ron Paul outdraws John McCain, will they give it the slightest bit of attention? Or will they throw it on the Big Pile of Ignoring onto which they toss anything that doesn’t give all glory to Mr. Cranky? Inquiring minds want to know.