Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) gave the keynote address at the annual Competitive Enterprise Institute dinner Thursday night in Washington DC. The sold out crowd of free market advocates eagerly awaited red meat from the Kentucky senator and they were not disappointed.
Paul began with a full frontal assault on the Obama Administration mocking them as the “Old MacDonald” white House, “You know, here a scandal, there a scandal, every where a scandal.” He want on to explain that in the three years he has been in the Senate he’s discovered that American “laws are not written by legislation but by the bureaucracy,” warning that we had “let government get away from us.”
Invoking Madison and the founders, he warned that “too much power has gravitated from you and your representatives and toward the president.”
Revealing inside information about a private, behind closed doors briefing he had received on a national security issue, Paul said that he had a confrontation with an un-named official who said “the country isn’t ready to go to war but it’s only because they don’t understand the issue well enough.” Paul says he ruffled some feathers when he responded “Oh, you think they’re too dumb?” “No, no, they’re just not informed,” the official said.
Continuing his remarks, he focused on government spending and the outrage over the sequester, Paul received rousing ovations when he proclaimed the “Sequester wasn’t enough” of a cut in government spending. Paul maintained that “we won the battle on sequester, the world didn’t end.” He mocked president Obama’s warnings on the sequester cuts and focused on the president’s assertion that “we’ve cut things to the bone.”
He pointed out that he had a list of six items that could easily get to the 40 billion dollars amounting to this year’s sequester price tag including simple ideas like competitive bidding for government contracts and reducing government travel by 25%, “So the IRS will have a few less Star Trek conferences.” He then delighted the crowd with the description of a federally funded robotic squirrel that cost tax payers $300,000.
He finished his speech by calling for a 17% flat personal income tax, and charged conservatives and Republicans with an inspirational challenge: “Let’s be for what we are. Let’s not be ashamed of what we’re for. We’re for tax reductions.”