Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) said that he was glad that students showed up to Ted Cruz’s presidential announcement speech wearing “Stand with Rand” shirts and suggested that he has done more than “throwing out red meat” on Monday’s “Kelly File” on the Fox News Channel.
Paul said that while he didn’t know who organized the students, “we were glad to see them there and organized, and excited about the possibility of me running.”
He also sought to distance himself from Cruz, stating that while “we kind of come from the same wing of the party, and if you look at our voting records you’ll find we’re very, very similar,” “what makes us different is probably our approach as to how we would make the party bigger. And I’m a big believer that you should stand on principle, and be true to your principles. But I also think that we should take those principles and try to bring in new people with them. So, I’ve spent the last couple years trying to go places Republicans haven’t gone, and maybe not just throwing out red meat, but actually throwing out something intellectually enticing to people who haven’t been listening to our message before.”
Paul added, “I try to get along with all the wings of the party, but I also am able to take the message of liberty and of the Bill of Rights and take it to Howard University, to the Urban League, to [the] NAACP, to Ferguson, to Berkeley and try to bring new people into the party. So, it isn’t just about rousing the base, it’s about exciting the base by being for the principles of liberty, but it’s then taking those principles of liberty, not diluting them, and taking them to new people and bringing them into the party. That’s the way you win general elections.”
He continued, “nobody is doing better against Hillary Clinton then myself, because we’re already picking up 3-5% or more of the Independent vote above what the others are picking up…right now, I’m the only one that beats Hillary Clinton in certain purple states. I’m the only one that also scores above all the other Republicans in whether or not I can beat her. So, there will be a lot of conservatives. Ted Cruz is a conservative, but it also goes to winnability, and people will have to make a decision which is the Republican that can not only excite the base, but can also bring new people into the party without giving up principles.”
Paul concluded by declaring “I think we do need to aggressively go after the Clintons. I think we need to go after their corruption. I think we need to call her out for not being a consistent defender of women’s rights when she’s willing to take money from a country that actually would imprison a victim of rape. So, there’s a lot of hypocrisy on the Clinton side, there’s a lot of the whole Clinton Inc., enriching themselves, and you can’t let that go, and there’s going to need [to be] somebody who will ask tough questions about like why in Benghazi didn’t that she provide the security that our ambassador needed. These are really important questions, and we won’t win unless we do aggressively combat her, and make sure that she has to explain her record as well.”
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