(January 23, 2010) – Peter Schiff is an American economist, author, commentator and popular video blogger who regularly appears in the role of a bearish pundit on numerous financial news networks. Schiff, a licensed stock broker, is the president of Euro Pacific Capital, a brokerage firm founded in 1980 and later reincorporated in 1996, now headquartered in Westport, Connecticut. Schiff’s rise to fame in late 2008 came when a video collage of his media appearances predicting the United States housing bubble, subprime mortgage crisis and overall economic meltdown expressed in sequential details surfaced on YouTube, rapidly resulting in one million views in a short period of time. The “Peter Schiff was Right” video led to a user trend on YouTube of uploading videos clips and collages of Schiff’s other media appearances to the popular video sharing website.
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Schiff was an economic adviser for Ron Paul’s campaign in the 2008 Republican Party primaries, through which he expressed support for sound money, limited government, and free-market capitalism. Schiff was strongly influenced by his father Irwin Schiff’s libertarian work and fiscally conservative views, becoming a vocal supporter of the Austrian School of Economics and the Ludwig von Mises Institute.
In response to an online grassroots movement in early 2008 dedicated to drafting him for U.S. Senate, Schiff began considering a run for the Republican nomination to challenge Democrat Christopher J. Dodd, Connecticut’s five-term senior senator, in the 2010 U.S. senate election and on 9 July 2009 formed an exploratory committee to solicit contributions and general feedback. Schiff officially announced his candidacy