ISOLATIONIST! HOMOPHOBE! RACIST! TEMPERMENTAL! SEXIST!
…Yikes… The media has certainly been on an anti-Rand Paul kick since he announced his candidacy to run for President of the United States. The interesting thing, however, is, some of these are coming from the Right-leaning media outlets, as much as the Left. Is this bad? Not necessarily.
Rand Paul, and this is obviously my opinion, is doing what no other politician is doing, or have done in many years; he’s breaking the party line. In other words, he’s voting policy, not party. Wait, what? But wouldn’t that make a politician a ‘RINO’ or ‘DINO’ …or whatever other lame words are used to describe someone who truly believes in the greater good of the country, rather than just party? Allow me to do my best and break down several key issues the Kentucky Senator is being attacked on, but first, before I get into the specifics, Rand Paul appeals to a broad range of people. “Well, who exactly?,” you might ask. I’ve only attended one Rand Paul event since he’s announced, but I can tell, as I’ve been following his speaking events — before and after his announcement, that when I look into the crowd and see his fans, I see a mixture of faces: black, white, asian, hispanic, younger, older, men, women, etc. I, as a gay person have supported him for the last year and a half; while keeping an open-mind on other potential candidates as well. I have plenty of other friends, who are gay, who would say Rand is their #1 pick as well. Moreover, Paul appeals to many factions of the GOP base, even if he is not their first pick: the libertarian wing, moderates, independents, some Tea Partiers (who still believe in what the Tea Party was [originally] intended for when it started: being ‘Taxed Enough Already’), youth voters, even and especially some Democrats who are on the fence with Hillary Clinton. Bill Maher… *sigh* here it comes, “I think it’s only good for America when I’m not sure who I’m going to vote for next time,” the liberal talk show host told Paul after a conversation where the two found common ground on the war on drugs and prison sentencing reform. I admire other candidates like Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Scott Walker, Ben Carson, but realistically, can ANYONE name more than say, two or three factions of people who they appeal to? (Comment box is below… I’ll wait.) But allow me to save you some time… they don’t. …Well, maybe Scott Walker. (Who is my #2) Rand Paul is also polling (for now) closest to Hillary Clinton. Is it very early? Of course, but he’s doing better than any other GOP candidate because he’s actually reaching out to voters who don’t typically vote Republican…
…see, told you. He’s going to liberal colleges to make the case for the conservative and libertarian ideology. He’s going to black and Hispanic communities to ask what Republicans can do to help these communities’ lives better. (Speaking of black communities) A quick tidbit, as many conservatives are up in arms with Paul meeting with one Al Sharpton. Paul is accused of being a racist, because of the media twisting his words on the ‘Civl Rights Act.’ Now, don’t people realize that Paul can use this meeting with Sharpton as a means to [easily] debunk that vicious rumor by saying, “I’m a racist? Why then, would the leader of the black community take any moment out to sit and talk to a “racist” like me?” Strategy, it’s all a strategy, and as the saying goes: “Did I not destroy my enemies when I made them my friends?” Lastly, Sen. Rand Paul was a doctor before he was a politician and he spends part of his spring recess in the operating room, keeping in practice for what he says is the day he returns to medicine. As I once read from ABC, Since Senate ethics rules prohibit Paul from practicing medicine for profit while he’s in Congress, Paul has performed several pro-bono surgeries over the past few years. The senator told Politico that performing the surgeries was a nice break from his work on Capitol Hill. “Nobody is arguing about anything today. We just decided what was wrong and we all came to the same conclusion pretty quickly and we worked together. It’s kind of unfortunate [that in] politics we don’t get a little more of that,” he said. Now, with all of that out of the way, I’ll get back to breaking down some significant issues being discussed. Immigration is always a great starting point, so I’ll start there…
Immigration: On the eve on Rand Paul’s announcement, he joined Sean Hannity, who asked, “Immigration is a huge issue. You said that it’s impossible to get comprehensive immigration reform. So your position now is?” Rand’s response: “My position always has been we should do little bits of what are doable and what, really, people believe in. Right now, we have 11 million people in the country who are said to be here illegally. Well, if you do nothing, you’ll get 11 million more. So I think having no immigration reform is a non-starter. You need immigration reform. But the first problem is, you have lawlessness on the border, and there’s also a national security risk to people who just walk into our country. So the first thing you have to do is secure your border. I think there’s a vast consensus on that. And if we had a bill to secure the border, it would pass. The first thing you have to do is secure the border. You know one thing that protects us from illegal immigration? Legal immigration.” …In June of 2014, Paul also stated, in a Breitbart exclusive, “REAL border security is necessary before any reform. I will [not] let journalists characterize my position as “amnesty.” That is simply untrue.” …now, many people on the right will still see Paul’s position as simply, “HE’S FOR AMNESTY!” And let me question them: What, really, has… ANY Republican really done in recent years to actually follow through on deportation of illegal immigrants or to secure the border? Actually, Jeff Sessions is really the only one who comes to mind. The rest of the “secure the border” Repubs have only spouted the typical rhetoric. Which even I’m guilty of falling for.
Same-Sex Marriage: Rand Paul is a traditionalist, who supports marriage between a man and a woman. However, he also doesn’t believe in government dictating who can or cannot get married. So again, Paul favors traditional marriage, but has said States should determine their own marriage laws. Now, interestingly enough, this is a stance that is [much] more open and accepting to the LGBT community than Barack Obama had when he first ran for President in 2008. If you recall from my other blog, where he publicly stated: “I believe that marriage is the union between a man and a woman. Now, for me as a Christian — for me — for me as a Christian, it is also a sacred union. God’s in the mix…” – April 17, 2008 …and didn’t Democrats, gay and straight, still support him even while running on that “anti-gay” stance? Hm. Actually, if we look at the facts, most conservatives running today believe in leaving the issue of SSM to the States, not the government. “I don’t want my guns registered in Washington or my marriage. Founding Fathers all got married by going down to the local courthouse. It is a local issue and always has been. …The bottom line is, I’m old fashioned, I’m a traditionalist,” Paul said. “I believe in old-fashioned traditional marriage. But, I don’t really think the government needs to be too involved with this, and I think that the Republican Party can have people on both sides of the issue.”
Voter I.D.: You may or may not have seen the link with the headline, “Rand Paul: Republicans Need to Soften Stance on Voter ID because it’s “Offending People” …I know I have, because most people who have shared it with me, can’t get passed that headline. Paul’s position when asked about it is as followed, “I know about voter fraud and that there have to be rules and states have the ability to do it,” Paul said. “But I’ve also said Republicans should be emphasizing the good things we’re trying to do to try to help minorities vote instead of the things many minorities feel is directed at them, rightly or wrongly. … So I do object to overemphasizing something that is turning people off.” …and I agree. Republicans go crazy over voter I.D., (I’m for it, by the way.) But obviously, people aren’t making a clear case on the issue because, we don’t have voter I.D. laws in every state. I hope we do make it so.
Department of Education: I stand with the Kentucky Senator when he would support shutting down the Department of Education. Rand has stated, “I would pay some teachers more but I’ll would pay some less and I would fire some. But you need to allow that kind of structure to occur where the one who has their with their feet on the desk reading the newspaper and doesn’t do squat for the kids needs to be out the door. Education historically was a state and local subject and I think that what we’ve seen is since we’ve spent about a hundred billion dollars in the Department of Education each year and that’s been going on since 1980. I’m not so sure we’re better off than we were before. You see, the one thing. David Axelrod then asked, “So you would vote for a budget that would eliminate most of that,” to which Rand replied, “Well what I would do is I would have its spent on the state and local level. I wouldn’t take it up there at all, I’d leave it at leave it at home. So you’d spend the money. You might still spend the money in your state government, but education even now, 90, 95-percent of your education dollars are state and local. That $100 billion gets rolled around in a big bureaucracy. They sent rules down that don’t help education, they hinder innovation. I would cut them out of the loop. I don’t think you’d notice if the whole department was gone tomorrow.”
Foreign Policy: Rand is called an “Isolationist” because he doesn’t believe we need to police the world. People like syndicated columnist, Charles Krauthammer has said Rand’s foreign policy is similar to that of Barack Obama. Whereas, Michael Reagan, the son of the great Ronald Reagan has stated that the Kentucky Senator’s FP is actually closer to his father’s Foreign Policy:
and Paul agrees… now, the foreign policy debate can go on for days and days, but because time is of the essence right now, all I’ll say is, Paul is clearly not a neo-con/warhawk, and cherishes the lives of the men and women who serve to protect our country. But he also looks at war constitutionally…
…Look, I’m not going to sit here and say Paul is the savior of the country, the greatest man to hold political office today, because quite frankly, they all pretty much have plenty of negatives. However, Rand is not afraid to think outside of the GOP box. Nor is he held to one political ideology. Paul considers himself to be a “Constitutional-Conservative, Libertarian-Republican. I can relate. And as Ronald Reagan once said: “If you analyze it I believe the very heart and soul of conservatism is libertarianism. I think conservatism is really a misnomer just as liberalism is a misnomer for the liberals — if we were back in the days of the Revolution, so-called conservatives today would be the Liberals and the liberals would be the Tories. The basis of conservatism is a desire for less government interference or less centralized authority or more individual freedom and this is a pretty general description also of what libertarianism is.”
I left the Democratic party in 2010, and I have to say, the party, since John Boehner was sworn in as Speaker of the House (that same year), I, and many others, have not been so proud of this GOP. Paul makes me proud to be a Republican, because he incorporates different points of views in the bills and policies he presents in Congress. He’s not just playing partisan politics which is all we have in Washington today. He’s relatable, principled, and some may say he’s “not your grandfather’s Republican,” …but, maybe he is, because the the idea of true limited government, independence, and fiscal responsibility is actually what the GOP should be, right? Paul just wants more of these principles with an expanded following. I’m supporting this, ‘Rand Old Party,’ and hope that you will too! (…more issues to be added soon.)