Republicans, Democrats, and the rest of the world.
*Written by Brian Doherty.
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) catapulted out of his 13-hour filibuster of John Brennan’s nomination for CIA chief as a world-changing politician, the new conscience of his party, and a Republican that nonpartisan progressives should love for his defense of our Fifth Amendment rights. (For those who don’t remember their civics classes, the Fifth Amendment includes the right to not be murdered at the executive branch’s sole discretion, which was the major topic of Paul’s marathon presentation last week.)
Paul is center stage now. If he wants to extend his time in the limelight and increase his star power, he needs to play act two and beyond with the same unpredictable political intelligence he showed in his filibuster. The freshman senator has (at least) three problem areas to navigate to extend his new status as a leading national politician and leading 2016 presidential candidate.
1. Democrats and Independents.
As I wrote about Paul last month for the New York Times:
“There’s a whole swath of people not getting adequate attention from Republicans or Democrats,” Senator Paul told me….These are independent voters who want to seriously cut government spending the way the Tea Party faction does but who also want a “foreign policy more of defense and less offense,” as Senator Paul put it, and a “more socially tolerant attitude.”…. “If we are ever going to win in California again, or Washington, we need someone who is a libertarian Republican,” Senator Paul told me.
CONTINUED at Reason.