Ron Paul conceded this weekend that homophobic and racist portions of his newsletters reflect poorly on his management style, while he again condemned the content.
The concession came in response to a pointed question from ABC's Jake Tapper on This Week: "You published a for-profit newsletter under your own name for decades, didn't know it included extremely offensive statements, assuming that what you are saying is 100% true -- that you did not see these sentences -- doesn't this call into question your management style?"
"Well, yeah, I think so," Paul admitted. "But nobody -- I don't think anybody in the world has been perfect on management."
Paul's newsletter warned of a "federal-homosexual cover-up on AIDS." And a 1994 issue of the newsletter blamed gay people for the disease, claiming that "those who don't commit sodomy, who don't get blood a transfusion, and who don't swap needles, are virtually assured of not getting AIDS unless they are deliberately infected by a malicious gay."
Tapper sought clarification on how much of Paul's newsletter was written by the candidate.
"If you could give a straight answer on this, who wrote these newsletters, and do you still associate with these people?" Paul was asked.
"I wrote a lot of part of the letter; I never said I didn't," said Paul. "I wrote some of the economic parts."
Paul described his role as publisher, not editor of the newsletter.
"There were some very bad sentences put in. I did not write those," he reiterated. "I did not review them. And that was an error on my part. But I condemned them. I don't know exactly who wrote them -- you know, I had eight or nine people working for me back then, and a lot of people wrote a lot of different things."
Paul downplayed his lack of oversight of those eight or nine people.
"I think it's a human flaw, and I think it is probably shared by a lot more people than myself," he said. "You can't monitor every single thing, but it is a flaw and of course I admit I am an imperfect person."
In the most recent polling, Paul is among the front-runners in the Republican presidential caucuses in Iowa today. The most recent Des Moines Register poll shows him within the margin of error to beat Mitt Romney, who is in first place, while Rick Santorum has surged into third.
Ron Paul Asked If Newsletters Show Bad Management: "Well, Yeah, I Think So"