Rand Paul

KY Senate: Rand Paul leads Jack Conway

New polling from Kentucky by Survey USA, sponsored by Louisville Courier-Journal and WHAS-TV, shows a tightening race between Jack Conway (D) and Rand Paul (R).

General Election: Rand Paul v. Jack Conway

  • Paul: 51%
  • Conway: 45%
  • Not sure: 4%

Paul is carrying independents, 47% to 34%, and though he is losing 16% of the Republican vote, he is carrying 29% of Democrats. I would submit to you that this is the anti-war vote crossing over.

The recent gaffe by Paul appears significant, but he is likely to survive it.

Rand Paul Is Wrong About Immigration

I’m usually pretty supportive of Rand Paul, but there are some issues where he’s wrong, and immigration is one of them:

Paul recently suggested to a Russian TV station that the U.S. should abandon its policy of granting citizenship to the children of illegal immigrants — even if they’re born on U.S. soil.

Paul also said he’s discussed instituting an “underground electrical fence” on the border to keep out unwanted elements, though he emphasized that he’s “not opposed to letting people come in and work and labor in our country.”

The real problem, Paul said, is that the U.S. “shouldn’t provide an easy route to citizenship” because of “demographics.”

According to Paul, the proportion of Mexican immigrants that register as Democrats is 3-to-1, so of course “the Democrat Party is for easy citizenship.”

He added: “We’re the only country that I know that allows people to come in illegally, have a baby, and then that baby becomes a citizen. And I think that should stop also.”

Video (immigration discussion begins around 8:30 in):

There’s just one problem with Paul’s position, and it starts with Section One of the 14th Amendment:

Mark Levin defends Rand Paul

Mark Levin, a conservative talk show host, defended Rand Paul on Friday after it was announced that the candidate has pulled out of an appearance on Meet the Press:

Rand Paul Sits Down With Local Media To Talk About The Week That Was

He may have backed out of Meet The Press, but Rand Paul did give one interview this week, with Louisville’s WHAS political reporter Joe Arnold:

(WHAS11) Facing increased scrutiny of how his libertarian views apply to current laws and potential legislation, Kentucky Republican U.S. Senate candidate Rand Paul on Friday clarified earlier remarks about the Civil Rights Act of 1964, adding that the remarks were part of “a philosophic debate about a moot point.”

In an interview at his Bowling Green, Kentucky opthamology practice with WHAS11’s Joe Arnold, Paul also backed off his repeated calls to abolish the U.S. Department of Education, expressed support for school choice and vouchers, and tried to renew the focus of the Senate race on the central tenet of his campaign, cutting spending as the U.S. debt spirals.

“These are big problems,” Paul said, “We can get sidetracked into emotional issues that have nothing to do with fixing the big problem.”

In the wake of the controversy that followed Paul’s Wednesday night appearance on MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show, and subsequent interviews with other national networks, the Paul campaign has suspended interviews with national reporters, including canceling a planned appearance on NBC’s Meet the Press. Referring to a live interview on ABC’s Good Morning America on Friday morning, Paul said he “held my own against (George) Stephanapolous.”

Satterwhite on the Civil Rights Act

Our own William Satterwhite asked some pretty thought-provoking questions about the economic system that existed in the Jim Crow South. If anything, it should get us thinking:

Here’s AJC editor Cynthia Tucker’s take on the Rand Paul story (looking over her archives and twitter updates, she seems to have a bead on all things Randian- I’ll leave it up to you to figure out if my pun there was intentional or not.

On the surface I actually agree with a lot of what the noted liberal Tucker says here, as well as with the conservative Bruce Bartlett who she quotes. White business owners in the segregated South were perfectly willing to disregard money from potential black customers. My argument is and always will be that that is their right. However, I would further argue that the segregated South is not an example of a free market system in place for various reasons. I would pose this question because I honestly don’t know the answer- in the segregated South, could businesses owned by blacks or whites who chose to cater to blacks legitimately compete with white-owned businesses who barred blacks? Could those businesses operate without fear of state-sanctioned and in some instances state-supported harassment? If the answer is no, then a free market did not actually exist and one cannot argue that the free market “failed” in this regard.

 

For Ron Paul’s Son, History Repeats

Remember Ron Paul’s hubbub over overtly racist rhetoric in some of his newsletters? Well, it looks like his son is now in similarly hot water:

It seems that after failing to answer a yes or no question about whether the Woolworth lunch counter should have stayed segregated in the 1960s, Rand Paul has found his words. The Republican Senate nominee in Kentucky issued a long statement Thursday stressing that he would not back any repeal of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. “I have clearly stated in prior interviews that I abhor racial discrimination and would have worked to end segregation,” Paul said. Still, he tiptoed around his main source of disagreement with the bill, which he says he believes does more than the federal government should be allowed. “This much is clear: The federal government has far overreached in its power grabs,” he said in the statement.

This all reminds me substantially of the firestorm that hit Mel Gibson. Gibson got caught in a firestorm of anti-Semitism bizarrely hurled at a police office just doing his job, soon amending himself with trips on daytime news shows with defenses that he was upset about what Israel was doing in the Middle East. His father, meanwhile, had been even more crude:

Rand Paul Sets The Record Straight On Civil Rights

I’m not sure that its going to completely end the media firestorm until something else happens to grab the attention of the talking heads, but Rand Paul made two statements today that should go a long way toward putting this Civil Rights Act hullabaloo behind him.

First, he spoke with Laura Ingraham this morning and said that he agreed that the CRA was both necessary and “settled law:”

Kentucky Senate candidate Rand Paul acknowledged Thursday that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was necessary to foster racial integration, a day after stumbling into a political mess by dodging questions about whether he would have voted for the law.

Appearing on Laura Ingraham’s show to do some clean-up after Wednesday’s interviews, Paul said: “There was a need for federal intervention so we can’t have segregation.”

The Republican accused liberals of trying to portray him as a racist for expressing philosophical concerns about the role of government in desegregating private business, explaining that he was not interested in revisiting the law.

“These are settled issues,” Paul said. “I have no intention of bringing up anything related to the Civil Rights Act.”

Audio:

Then the Paul campaign issued this statement:

Trey Grayson’s voters may not be sold on Rand Paul

With his impressive victory in Kentucky last night, Rand Paul is now faced with winning over Trey Grayson’s voters, who were more in line with the neo-conservative establishment of the Republican Party. Polling suggests his work is cut out for him:

The likely Rand Paul victory in the Kentucky Republican primary today should give Democrats a very good chance of winning in the fall because supporters of Trey Grayson, Paul’s main opponent, really don’t like him.

Some primaries play out in such a way that party loyalists view several of the candidates favorably and just choose the one they like best. That was very much the case with the recent Democratic contest in North Carolina. But in Kentucky we find that Paul’s supporters hate Grayson, and that even more Grayson’s supporters hate Paul.

53% of likely Grayson voters for today have an unfavorable opinion of Paul to only 23% with a positive opinion of him. More importantly though just 40% of Grayson voters say they’ll support Paul in the general election if he wins the Republican nomination with 43% explicitly saying they will not.

Grayson and Mitch McConnell are committed to assisting Paul win and will be holding a “unity rally” on Saturday in Frankfort at the state GOP headquarters. But the fearmongering by the neo-conservatives will cost the Republican Party this election in November if a large portion of Grayson’s voters stay home.

Rand Paul’s victory speech

See Video

BREAKING: Rand Paul projected to win the GOP nomination for US Senate in Kentucky

The Associated Press has called the Republican primary for United States Senate in Kentucky for Rand Paul, who as of this moment is leading his primary opponent, Trey Grayson, 60.4% to 35.9% with 29% of precincts reporting in.

It is, as my friend Dave Weigel called it, a “RANDSLIDE.”

You can watch returns for this race here.

Check back for updates.

[8:32pm] Trey Grayson has conceded, according to CNN, telling supporters, “We must unite behind Dr. Paul.”

[8:37pm] Sen. Jim Bunning has released a statement congratulating Rand Paul: “I want to congratulate Dr. Paul on a hard fought victory in the Republican primary for the U.S. Senate. Dr. Paul is the right man to win in November and his victory today is a clear signal to the Washington establishment to shake things up. Dr. Paul is a strong conservative who will be his own man in Washington and work to end the bailouts, stop wasteful spending, and defend our Kentucky values. He will fight to take our government back.”

[9:31pm] Here is part of Rand Paul’s victory speech:


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