Rand Paul’s entry into the 2016 Republican presidential primary is good for the GOP. I won’t proclaim that Paul, 52, has the gravitas or character to occupy the Oval Office — that remains to be seen — but I do believe that all the other Republican hopefuls should watch and learn from Kentucky’s junior senator. His take on issues could make independents and Democrats take a second look at a party where they have not felt welcome.
Paul describes himself as “libertarian-ish.” He’s not an apologist for the GOP. “It seems to me that both parties and the entire political system are to blame,” Paul said in his campaign kickoff speech in Louisville on Tuesday. “Big government and debt doubled under a Republican administration. And it’s now tripling under Barack Obama’s watch.” Many Republicans wonder why they send to Congress candidates who promise to reduce the size and scope of government yet government keeps growing. This rhetoric plays with the party’s base.