Rand Paul

Immigration reform and the 2016 Republican primary season

Featured image The Republican establishment — or at least the large chunk of it that favors amnesty and a path to citizenship for illegal aliens — must be delighted that the two Republicans said to be the leading candidates for the 2016 presidential nomination both favor amensty and a path to citizenship for illegal aliens. I’m referring, of course, to Marco Rubio and Rand Paul. The establishment’s delight is understandable. But a »

Rand Paul finds his punching bag, but only for the short term

Featured image What are Rand Paul’s biggest assets as he attempts to convert the GOP into an isolationist party? He has several, and one of them is John McCain. McCain surely is among the names Paul “didn’t need to mention” when he declared before CPAC that “the GOP of old has grown stale and moss-covered.” Paul also didn’t perceive a need to name the GOP policies he believes are stale. Instead, he »

Has Rand Paul peaked too soon?

Featured image In all likelihood, Rand Paul cannot be nominated for president by the Republican Party unless he distances himself to a considerable degree from the views of his father. The younger Paul seems to understand this. For example, he has recently showed far more sympathy for Israel (which he visited) than Ron Paul ever displayed. But Rand Paul’s filibuster against (non-existent) drone attacks on American citizens minding their own business in »

Rand Paul and the limits of Facebook Generation “conservatism”

Featured image Anyone who doubts that Rand Paul is a force to be reckoned with in the Republican Party should watch his CPAC speech and then think again. But anyone who believes that Paul can lead the Republican Party to victory should engage in similar reflection. Since the days of Reagan, the Party has stood, famously, on the three-legged stool of free-market conservatism, strong national defense conservatism, and social conservatism. Lately, to »

Does John McCain have standing to complain about “political stunts”?

Featured image Quick, what was the last speech by a Republican that energized the base as much as Rand Paul’s filibuster? Some may cite Paul Ryan’s dynamic acceptance speech at the 2012 Republican Convention. But the better answer, I think, is Sarah Palin’s acceptance speech in 2008. Palin’s speech was brought to us by John McCain, the same guy who now attacks Rand Paul for engaging in a stunt. In fairness to »

Political disruption and its limits

Featured image In the aftermath of Rand Paul’s filibuster Rick Wilson at Ricochet suggests that “disruption” is the Republican’s “path back to power.” Rand Paul has shown that disruption is a path to trending on twitter. But is it really a path to power? Yes and no. Yes, Republicans would be well-served by disrupting the liberal/MSM narrative. Dynamic young candidates from humble or middle class origins can dent the narrative that Republicans »

Why Rand Paul’s filibuster was something worse than grandstanding

Featured image Last week, I wondered whether Rand Paul’s filibuster was “grandstanding or something worse.” Actually, in the course of the post I made it clear that, for me, the filibuster (in addition, perhaps, to grandstanding) was indeed “something worse”: I fear that, like his father, Paul’s underlying objection is to what he has called the “perpetual war” against Islamist terrorists. Being more politically astute then Ron Paul, the junior Senator from »

Republican “Old Bulls” chastise Rand Paul, unconvincingly

Featured image John McCain and Lindsey Graham have blasted Rand Paul over his filibuster of the Brennan nomination. Quoting a Wall Street Journal editorial, McCain said: “If Mr. Paul wants to be taken seriously, he needs to do more than pull political stunts that fire up impressionable libertarian kids in college dorms.” Graham wondered why Republican Senators had not been riled up over President Bush’s use of drones. He also said that »