Rand Paul

KY Senate: Paul leads Conway by 8 points, at 51%

A new poll from Survey USA shows Rand Paul leading Jack Conway by eight points in the race to be the next United States Senator from Kentucky.

General Election: Rand Paul v. Jack Conway

  • Paul: 51%
  • Conway: 43%
  • Undecided: 5%

Paul holds a lead with all age groups and is picking up the support of 25% of Democrats. He also has a lead among independents, 54% to 36%. That’s up from the previous poll conducted by Survey USA back in May.

You can view all polling in this race here.

Tea Party Caucus in the House and Senate

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) has filed paperwork to start a Capitol Hill Tea Party Caucus, according to Minnesota Public Radio:

“The American people are speaking out loud and clear. They have had enough of the spending, the bureaucracy, and the government knows best mentality running rampant today throughout the halls of Congress. This caucus will espouse the timeless principles of our founding, principles that all Members of Congress have sworn to uphold,” Bachmann stated. “The American people are doing their part and making their voices heard and this caucus will prove that there are some here in Washington willing to listen.”

Rand Paul, the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in Kentucky, has also floated the idea, likely including Mike Lee and Sharron Angle as well as fiscally conservative senators like Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Jim DeMint (R-SC), but some of his possible colleagues are cool to the idea:

So who wants to join Rand Paul’s “tea-party” caucus?

“I don’t know about that,” Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) replied with a nervous laugh. “I’m not sure I should be participating in this story.”

Republican lawmakers see plenty of good in the tea party, but they also see reasons to worry. The movement, which has ignited passion among conservative voters and pushed big government to the forefront of the 2010 election debate, has also stirred quite a bit of controversy. Voters who don’t want to privatize Social Security or withdraw from the United Nations could begin to see the tea party and the Republican Party as one and the same.

Gerson doesn’t understand libertarianism

Michael Gerson, who served as a speechwriter for George W. Bush, is worried about the rise of libertarianism in the Republican Party:

The Republican wave carries along a group that strikes a faux revolutionary pose. “Our Founding Fathers,” says Nevada Republican Senate candidate Sharron Angle, “they put that Second Amendment in there for a good reason, and that was for the people to protect themselves against a tyrannical government. And in fact, Thomas Jefferson said it’s good for a country to have a revolution every 20 years. I hope that’s not where we’re going, but you know, if this Congress keeps going the way it is, people are really looking toward those Second Amendment remedies.”

Angle has managed to embrace the one Founding Father with a disturbing tolerance for the political violence of the French Revolution. “Rather than it should have failed,” enthused Jefferson, “I would have seen half the earth desolated.” Hardly a conservative model.

But mainstream conservatives have been strangely disoriented by Tea Party excess, unable to distinguish the injudicious from the outrageous. Some rose to Angle’s defense or attacked her critics. Just to be clear: A Republican Senate candidate has identified the United States Congress with tyranny and contemplated the recourse to political violence. This is disqualifying for public office. It lacks, of course, the seriousness of genuine sedition. It is the conservative equivalent of the Che Guevara T-shirt — a fashion, a gesture, a toying with ideas the wearer only dimly comprehends. The rhetoric of “Second Amendment remedies” is a light-weight Lexington, a cut-rate Concord. It is so far from the moral weightiness of the Founders that it mocks their memory.

Is the tea party divided on foreign policy and defense spending?

There has been yet another story published about the factions of the tea party movement, which are divided along the lines of Sarah Palin and Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), and the split over defense spending:

Palin, the former Republican vice presidential nominee, invokes the importance of a strong and robust military in speech after speech, while Paul, the libertarian Republican who rocketed to the national scene during the 2008 presidential race, has long argued for drastic cuts in defense spending.

It’s a schism that has long existed within the GOP’s fold – between hawkish conservatives and spend-weary Republicans – but one which the Tea Party movement’s diverse coalition and varied figure heads have specifically laid bare over the past year.

The division is especially apparent this week as Paul, whom many in the Tea Party movement hope mounts another bid for president, is teaming up with Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank, a Democrat, to call for substantial cuts in U.S. military spending.
[…]
But at the same time Paul reiterates his across-the-board fiscal conservatism, Palin is making moves to ensure the Tea Party does not articulate an agenda that includes advocating for military spending cuts, even as the movement’s larger agenda is focused on reigning in government spending.

In a speech before a conservative gathering in Virginia late last month, Palin stressed that while the “Obama-Reid-Pelosi spending machine” must be tempered, spending on the military should remain strong.

Rasmussen ranks Senate races in 2010 mid-terms

Rasmussen Reports released their rankings of United States Senate seats in the 2010 mid-term elections. The rankings show 10 seats up for grabs, six of those being held currently by Democrats.

Listed below are the seats expected to be competitive in November. Not included are Arkansas, Delaware, Indiana and North Dakota, which are all currently held by Democrats but are expected to turn Republican.

Toss-up

  • Colorado
  • Florida (open)
  • Illinois (open)
  • North Carolina
  • Missouri (open)
  • Nevada
  • Ohio (open)
  • Pennsylvania (open)
  • Washington
  • Wisconsin

Lean GOP

  • Kentucky (open)
  • New Hampshire (open)

Lean Dem

KY Senate: Rand Paul maintains lead over Jack Conway

The latest Rasmussen survey from Kentucky shows Rand Paul (R), who raised over $1 million in the last quarter, holding his lead over Jack Conway (D) as the race to replace Sen. Jim Bunning (R) is well under way in the Blue Grass State.

General Election: Rand Paul v. Jack Conway

  • Paul: 49%
  • Conway: 42%
  • Other: 3%
  • Not sure: 6%

Rasmussen notes:

While men in Kentucky give the edge to Paul, women are evenly divided between the nominees. Among voters not affiliated with either major political party, Paul holds a 54% to 36% advantage.

Opposition to the national health care bill remains higher in Kentucky than it is nationally. Sixty percent (60%) of voters in the state favor repeal of the bill, while 36% are opposed. Those numbers include 44% who Strongly Favor repeal and 26% who Strongly Oppose it.

Conway comes across like a pretty smooth candidate, but he is just as far out as President Barack Obama. It’s Paul’s seat to lose.

Ron Paul Non-Committal On 2012 Run For President, Hints He May Back Gary Johnson

Some interesting words from the most interesting candidate of 2008:

Ron Paul says he hasn’t decided if he’ll challenge President Obama for re-election in 2012, but he does predict that Republicans will be more open than they were in 2008 to nominating a libertarian-minded candidate.

“I think there’s no doubt about it,” Paul said in an interview with The Daily Caller.

This year, libertarian-Republican candidates for the U.S. Senate — like Paul’s son Rand Paul in Kentucky and Sharron Angle in Nevada — have won Republican primaries with the help of the Tea Party support. Noting the “big libertarian influence in the Tea Party movement,” Paul says libertarian beliefs are making their way into the lexicon of traditional Republicans.

“I think even the issue of the Federal Reserve — that issue is almost mainstream,” he said. “And I think things have shifted because of the financial crisis as well as the bogging down of our foreign policy. So the American people are looking for some different answers.”

Paul, whose anti-Iraq war views won him jeers at some Republican events in 2008, says a libertarian-minded GOP candidate will be better received when Obama runs for re-election. But he cautioned that he himself has not decided to run. “It’s too early for me to talk much about that because I haven’t made a decision. I haven’t ruled it out, but I’m not on the verge of making a decision anytime soon,” Paul said.

Asked to name other potential presidential candidates he could support, Paul replied, “I guess the best one would be Johnson from New Mexico — Gary Johnson.”

Penn Jillette On Rand Paul

Rand Paul Defends Idealism

Rand Paul had an interesting column in a local Kentucky newspaper over the weekend addressing his post-primary comments about the Civil Rights Act of 1964:

I am unlike many folks who run for office. I am an idealist. When I read history I side with abolitionists such as William Lloyd Garrison and Frederick Douglas who fought for 30 years to end slavery and to integrate public transportation in the free North in the 1840s. I see our failure to end slavery for decade after decade as a failure of weak-kneed politicians.

I cheer the abolitionist Lysander Spooner, who argued that slavery was unconstitutional 20 years before the Civil War. I cheer Lerone Bennet when he argues that the right of habeas corpus guaranteed in the Constitution should have derailed slavery long before the Civil War.

Only when the brave idealists, the abolitionists, finally provoked the weak-kneed politicians into action, did the emancipation proclamation come about. Our body politic has enough pragmatists, we need a few idealists.

Segregation ended only after a great and momentous uprising by idealists like Martin Luther King Jr., who provoked weak-kneed politicians to action.

In 2010, there are battles that need to be fought, and they have nothing to do with race or discrimination, but rather the rights of people to be free from a nanny state.

For example, I am opposed to the government telling restaurant owners that they cannot allow smoking in their establishments. I believe we as consumers can choose whether to patronize a smoke-filled restaurant or do business with a smoke-free option.

Think about it – this overreach is now extending to mandates about fat and calorie counts in menus. Do we really need the government managing all of these decisions for us?

KY Senate: Paul leads by 8

On the heels of a poll from Survey USA comes a new Rasmussen survey showing Rand Paul (R) leading Jack Conway (D) by 8 points, a significant drop from the last poll conducted by the same firm.

General Election: Rand Paul v. Jack Conway

  • Paul: 49%
  • Conway: 41%
  • Other: 4%
  • Not sure: 6%

Similar to the Survey USA poll, Rasmussen shows Paul picking up support from 23% of Democrats. He is also winning the support of 52% of independent voters.

Rasmussen also notes the favorables of each candidate:

Fifty-seven percent (57%) of Kentucky voters now have a favorable opinion of Paul, down from 69% percent in the previous survey. Thirty-eight percent (38%) view him unfavorably, and five percent (5%) have no opinion.

Conway is viewed favorably by 47% and unfavorably by 43%, marking virtually no change from two weeks ago. Eleven percent (11%) have no opinion of the Democrat.

If Paul can manage not to make anymore gaffes, he should win this thing.


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