Rand Paul is unique amongst Republicans running for President in 2016. Anything but average, the Rand Paul campaign has been brilliantly tactical, patient, modest, and methodical (after some inside campaign shakeups at the beginning); however, this is a candidacy waged against all odds. Rand Paul is a libertarian-Republican with a 93% Liberty Rating from Conservative Review. Only Mike Lee (100%) and Ted Cruz (96%) enjoy better ratings. Yet, Rand Paul endorsed Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (52%) against an outstanding conservative primary opponent; a move which has spared Senator Paul from targeting by the Washington Establishment.
Currently, Hillary Clinton leads Democrats in the polls (a reality I believe will change over the coming months, and change dramatically after she opens her mouth during the first Democrat debate). Rand Paul polls better, nationally, against Hillary Clinton than any other Republican Candidate including Jeb Bush (with an unfavorable review) and Donald Trump (with a mixed review). In Iowa and New Hampshire, Rand Paul is polling in the top 4, though he is struggling mightily in South Carolina, where its’ native senior Senator, Lindsey Graham (47%), has decided to run a campaign on an anyone-but-Rand-Paul platform.
Rand Paul’s voting record is one of the best in the Senate, yet, he spends a great deal of time reaching out to Democrat constituencies, a fact that makes many Republicans uneasy. However, at the end of the day, I don’t care how he plays politics with our nations ridiculous demographics, so long as he votes in accordance with his principles.
Unlike other TEA Party candidates, Rand Paul is playing Balderdash (aka. politics) with the best of them – realizing that his ultra-conservative voting record is not likely to come up during the elections. Americans don’t vote on records. They vote on impressions and image. If Republicans voted on principle, then all they’d need to do to win is to nominate Senator Mike Lee and call it a day. No Republican is as consistent a conservative and a Republican as Senator Mike Lee.
Alas, this is not how Republicans vote. Republican voters tend to vote for candidates they feel have an impressive public image. This is the case primarily because they don’t understand their Democrat opponents, but are aware that anyone that looks and sounds conservative is going to be viciously attacked in the media, so Republicans avoid those candidates (not because they disagree with their politics, but, frankly, because they DO agree with them). Republicans are terrified of nominating someone they like, because they know that anyone they like will be despised by the media.
Then there is Rand Paul. A much softer, friendlier, easier on the ears candidate than his father, Rand Paul is neither trusted nor hated by the Establishment or the Grassroots. He lacks enemies within the party, other than the creature Lindsey Graham, and Democrats don’t exactly know what to make of him. He goes after the black vote and isn’t despised in that community like most Republicans. Hispanics haven’t made up their mind whether to peg him as a racist. Younger voters like him.
Once every couple of months, Rand Paul shows up at a hospital or clinic somewhere and performs free surgeries for patients.
Rand Paul’s two biggest issues in the Senate have been ObamaCare and NSA Spying. Now, both of these issues make Establishment Republicans uneasy, but voters take both issues seriously.
Where it gets ugly and daunting for the junior Senator from Kentucky is on foreign policy and border security. What is his plan to defeat ISIS? How does he plan on dealing with Russia and China? How does the United States gain traction and influence in Africa and South America (two high priority targets of the Communist Regime in China)? How would he handle some inevitably bipartisan Immigration Reform Bill if he were President?
With Domestic Terrorism looking like it is going to become a common thing, how does he plan on addressing it? Why hasn’t he been more outstpoken on ObamaTrade?
It is safe to say, for these reasons, that Rand Paul is running an incomplete campaign which requires further investigation and a great deal more explanation from him on these issues going forward; but for all of that, this is not a poorly run campaign. Nor should the Senator be underestimated by the Establishment and Grassroots.
Article written by: Steven Brodie Tucker