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EDITOR OF REDSTATE

Rand Paul and Me

I’ve been getting a lot of flack among friends on our side for my support of Rand Paul. It’s understandable. He is Ron Paul’s son. I’m not a Ron Paul fan. Notably, Rand is more often than not accused of taking a position that is not his, but is his father’s.My friend Dan Riehl has captured a lot of it.

Erick seems to have decided that beating Trey Grayson because he’s McConnell’s protege weakens McConnell and it will lead to more conservative leadership in the Senate in the next Congress. That’s the only principled conservative rationale for supporting Paul.

The issue here though is not really about McConnell. McConnell is just a symptom.I want people in Congress who are on my side, but who are not easily controlled except by principle. It is a hard thing to explain and I’m not sure I should try, but I will.The problem with Republicans in Congress is that they lost their way. They were willing to do things they otherwise would oppose because George Bush told them to. And they have been willing ever since to go along with strategies that were poll tested and mother approved because that is what the leadership wanted and told them to do.McConnell just happens to be that leader in the Senate right now. Were it not him, it’d be Lamar Alexander, who would arguably be even worse.Look, we can agree to disagree. I appreciate Dan’s disagreement and that of many of you. I do not agree with every one of Rand Paul’s positions and view him as largely uncontrollable. But I like that and knew that going into this. I want men and women of high moral character who are men and women of conservative principle, not of party. When of party, politicians think too often of saving themselves, not the country. For too long the Republicans have invested in solid party guys who advance the party’s agenda, but not conservatism and certainly not smaller government.I don’t expect that I will ever go to Washington and demand of someone I have helped that they do something for me. I just want good people there. Paying me back just means they’ll do a good job, not my bidding.Unfortunately, I think Trey Grayson is a man of the party who will do the party’s bidding, even when it is not in the country’s best interest. He might say now that he would oppose TARP or what have you, but I don’t believe he would if the party leadership told him he had to. Your mileage may vary.I don’t expect I will agree with everything Rand Paul does or even Marco Rubio or Mike Lee or Pat Toomey or any of the others. But I do expect they will view each action through a conservative world view and a belief in limited government. I don’t expect that of those I don’t support. That’s why I’m sticking with Rand Paul.

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