When All Else Fails

Ron Paul Calls for Audit of U.S. Gold Reserves

by Christian Gomez, LRC/NewAmerican

In an exclusive interview with Kitco News, Congressman Ron Paul (R-Texas) revealed that next year at the start of the newly inaugurated 112th United States Congress, he would introduce a new bill to audit the U.S. gold reserves, which are reportedly stored at the New York Federal Reserve and Fort Knox.

The reason behind this bill is that in the event “we ever get around to deciding we should use gold in relationship to our currency, we ought to know how much is there,” Paul told Kitco.

“Our Federal Reserve admits to nothing, and they should prove all the gold is there. There is a reason to be suspicious, and even if you are not suspicious, why wouldn’t you have an audit?” said Paul.

This is not the first time Rep. Ron Paul has suggested that there be a full audit of the county’s gold reserves. Paul recalled that “In the early 1980s when I was on the gold commission, I asked to recommend to Congress that they audit the gold reserves – we had 17 members of the commission and 15 voted not to [recommend] the audit.”

The two votes in favor of an audit came from the two gold advocates who pushed for the creation of the commission in the first place – Senator Jesse Helms (R-N.C.) and Rep. Ron Paul.

At the time, Sen. Helms and Rep. Paul were the leaders of Congress’s gold coalition, which included Republicans Sen. James McClure of Idaho, Sen. Barry Goldwater of Arizona, Rep. Philip Crane of Illinois, Rep. James Collins of Texas, Rep. Steven Symms of Idaho, and Democratic Rep. Larry McDonald of Georgia, the latter of whom was at the time also a National Council member of the John Birch Society.

In fact, Rep. McDonald introduced a similar bill to that of Ron Paul’s newly proposed 2011 gold reserve audit bill. In 1979, Rep. McDonald sponsored H.R. 555, entitled: “A bill to require the Comptroller General of the United States to audit annually the gold held by the United States on the first day of each fiscal year and to report his findings to Congress.” McDonald presented the same bill again the next year, this time as H.R.555, and was unable to garner any cosponsors.

A few years earlier, on August 8, 1974, Rep. Phillip Crane introduced H.R. 16345, entitled, “A bill to provide for an audit by the General Accounting Office of all gold owned by the United States.” He too was unable to gain support for his gold reserve audit bill.

Although McDonald and Crane’s respected gold reserve audit bills received no cosponsors at the time, Ron Paul hopes to ride the wave of his recent landmark Federal Reserve Audit bill that passed the House this past year, but was eventually gutted in the Senate by Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

If Paul’s Federal Reserve audit were able to pass the House and make strong headway in the Senate, despite Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress, then come January, with a potential newly-elected “Tea Party” Congress, Paul’s bill to audit U.S. gold reserves might make headway. It would be fundamentally important to any future plans to return to a pure gold standard.

The last and only time that an audit was performed on the gold held in Fort Knox was issued within hours of President Dwight Eisenhower’s inauguration on January 20, 1953. After 20 years of Democratic rule in the White House and President Franklin Roosevelt’s Executive Order 6102 of April 3, 1933, in which private ownership of gold was outlawed, the American people had become worried whether all of the gold that FDR and the federal government confiscated was still in storage.

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