This Sunday, Sen. Rand Paul said on ABC’s “This Week” that if the Republican Party wants to perform better nationally, they need to run libertarian candidates who are “less aggressive, more socially tolerant,” so that they can compete in the Northeast and West Coast states.
We must admit that we totally agree with Rand Paul on this point.
Unfortunately for Rand Paul — who is almost assuredly running for president in 2016 — this line of thinking totally excludes him as a viable candidate.
One of the big reasons why his father Ron Paul could never come close to winning a Republican primary (besides having the audacity not to love invading countries), is that he spent very little time thumping his Bible over making abortion illegal, nor villainizing gay people. If you want to win early primary/caucus states like Iowa and South Carolina, this is a mandatory prerequisite.
And don’t think that this fact has escaped the career-driven Rand Paul, who’s been making regular pit stops over the past year in Iowa to speak to far-right evangelical groups and say things like this (right after Obama ended Don’t Ask Don’t Tell):
“Call me cynical, but I didn’t think his views on marriage could get any gayer.”
Charming, no? But Rand certainly isn’t a newcomer to this game, as he’s made it clear since his Senate campaign that he is in favor of the government permitting discrimination against the LGBT community. And he’s certainly not opposed to stoking the flames of paranoia against the Secret Radical Homosexual Agenda:
“I would rather the local schools decide things. I don’t like the idea of somebody in Washington deciding that Susie has two mommies is an appropriate family situation and should be taught to my kindergardener at school. That’s what happens when we let things get to a federal level. I think I would rather have local school boards, teachers, parents, people in Paducah deciding about your schools and not have it in Washington.”
But Paul’s brand of “social tolerance” extends to women’s reproductive rights, too, as he has long supported the criminalization of abortion of the federal level, including in cases of rape. Monitoring the uterus and doctor’s office of every woman in America… just the kind of small government we need.
Yesterday, Rand Paul even endorsed Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli for governor of the state in his race next year. Cuccinelli might be the most radical anti-abortion attorney general in America, and would be sure to push the horrendous bill that failed earlier this year, mandating that any woman wanting an abortion would have to have a probe shoved into her vagina for an ultrasound: i.e., raped by the government.
Is that the small, “socially tolerant” government that Rand Paul is talking about?
So we agree with Paul on his larger point about the type of candidates the GOP needs to compete in the Northeast and West, but unless he has a different definition of the words “socially tolerant,” he might as well stop making those trips to Iowa churches.