There’s a lot to Rand Paul the person and Rand Paul the U.S. senator. And Jason Horowitz gives us access to both of those people in a profile with Vogue. Paul and his wife Kelley Ashby are in Kentucky on a Saturday in July, driving across the state to a small political rally in St. Catherine – a rural town just outside of Springfield.
And his attitude is not like that of other politicians.
“[T]he state’s junior senator climbs out with pursed lips, mussed hair, and a generally weary look on his otherwise boyish face. A bluegrass band strikes up a tune, and Paul gets into character, which is to say, he acts exactly the same as when he lumbered out of the car or, for that matter, stopped on the road for pretzels.”
It’s a long piece, winding from his current political prospects (very high!) to his new status in the Republican party (a vocal leader), to his life as a child growing up.
The common thread, however, is how good Paul is at being a politician and standing up for the people he was elected to represent. So good in fact, that he’s gone from never-held-office, first-time-candidate-for-office in 2010, to potential presidential favorite. The word they used to describe the idea of President Rand Paul just a couple years ago? “Absurd.”
He had no experience holding political office prior to being elected in 2010. He was an opthamologist with a famous father who was a political figure (a father he helped campaign for a bit, giving speeches sometimes).
“But the younger Paul rode a Tea Party wave to Washington, and quickly became the movement’s most intriguing and charismatic spokesperson—an ambassador for libertarian values who takes obvious relish in skewering critics, regardless of their political affiliation. While his father was content to remain a dissenting voice from the margins—or from one end of countless presidential-debate stages—Rand clearly wants to win.”
In order to win, Paul is counting on a brand of new Republicanism, one he’s championed and wielded skillfully since taking office less than three years ago. It’s reaching out to minorities, reaching out to youth voters, and speaking to issues that affect everyone: Rights.
That’s privacy, or freedom of choice. Protecting the values in the constitution.
He wants the Republican Party to continue to expand and grow. He wants it to be strong, as its ideas sweep across the nation and into Washington D.C. He thinks the way to victory is dotted with a “libertarian infusion,” a “constitutional, Bill of Rights type approach: to the issues. Take that and inject it into the Republican Party, and you’ve got a recipe for success.
He’s got a long way to go. But right now he’s on the right track, and it doesn’t look like he’ll be pumping the brakes any time soon.
For an earshot from the liberal left press regarding Paul, here’s an interview with the author of the Vogue article:
Finally someone on Capital
Hill is willing to speak out and
stand firm for our personal
freedoms, our God-given
rights and all man's equality.
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