After a poll by Fox News shows him with 5% nationally, Paul will appear at the GOP debate in Las Vegas Nevada.
Paul and Christie spar over the NSA’s use of phone records to catch terrorists:
PAUL: I want to collect more records from terrorists, but less records from innocent Americans. The Fourth Amendment was what we fought the Revolution over. I will continue to stand for the Bill of Rights.
CHRISTIE: That’s a completely ridiculous answer. How are you supposed to know [the difference]?
PAUL: Get a warrant!
CHRISTIE: Senator, when you’re sitting in a subcommittee just blowing hot air about this, you can say things like that. When you’re responsible for protecting the lives of American people, then what you need to do is make sure..
PAUL: Here’s the problem, governor. You fundamentally misunderstand the Bill of Rights…I don’t trust President Obama with our [phone] records. I know you gave him a big hug, and if you want to give him a big hug again, go right ahead.
CHRISTIE: And you know — you know, Senator Paul? Senator Paul, you know, the hugs that I remember are the hugs that I gave to the families who lost their people on September 11th. Those are the hugs I remember, and those had nothing to do — and those had nothing to do with politics, unlike what you’re doing by cutting speeches on the floor of the Senate, then putting them on the Internet within half an hour to raise money for your campaign…
The candidates for the GOP Presidential debate are announced: Trump, Bush, Walker, Huckabee, Carson, Cruz, Rubio, Paul, Christie and Kasich will appear on stage on Aug 6 in Cleveland, OH. RNC chairman Priebus:
Our field is the biggest and most diverse of any party in history and I am glad to see that every one of those extremely qualified candidates will have the opportunity to participate on Thursday evening. Republicans across the country will be able to choose which candidate has earned their support after hearing them talk through the issues.
As a result of the disclosures in videos about the donation fo fetal tissue from abortions, Senator Paul introduces legislation that Majority Leader McConnell aims to vote on that halts federal funding to Planned Parenthood. The organizations receives about $500 million annually in federal funding, although that money cannot be used for abortions. Spokesperson for McConnell:
The leader is working with his members to address this horrific issue and intends to have a vote before we leave for a five-week summer recess
Paul speaks for more than 10 hours on the Senate floor to filibuster a Patriot Act provision used to legally justify the bulk collection of telephone data. Congress must reauthorize or change the law by June 1, and its Memorial Day recess starting at week’s end.
I will not let the Patriot Act, the most unpatriotic of acts, go unchallenged. At the very least, we should debate. We should debate whether or not we are going to relinquish our rights, or whether or not we are going to have a full and able debate over whether or not we can live within the Constitution, or whether or not we have to go around the Constitution.
I think we’ve made the [collection] haystack so big, no one’s ever getting through the haystack to find the needle. What we really need to do is isolate the haystack into a group of suspicious people and spend enormous resources looking at suspicious people, people who we have probable cause.
You don’t know who the next group is that’s unpopular. The Bill of Rights isn’t for the prom queen. The Bill of Rights isn’t for the high school quarterback. The Bill of Rights is for the least among us. The bill of rights is for minorities. The bill of rights is for those who have minority opinions
Paul criticizes Jeb Bush for his remarks on Iraq in an interview to Politico.
[Iraq] is an important question and [Bush gave] an incredibly fumbled answer…I don’t think it’s hypothetical whether or not it’s a good idea to topple secular dictators in the Middle East and hope to get a good outcome and hope that stability comes thereafter…I think every day we look at the mess of the chaos of the civil war in Iraq, I think every day people become more and more convinced that the war was a mistake. I think we have to learn from the mistakes of our past.
Paul lauds the federal appeals court’s ruling on NSA for illegal spying.
This is a big deal. We’ve been waiting for this for over a year now. I sued the NSA last year because I think that the whole program really is not consistent with the Fourth Amendment and what we find out today is that the appeals court thinks it’s not even consistent with the statute, the Patriot Act, which also goes on to mention that many people in congress had no idea this program was going on, and most of us don’t think that this program is consistent with what the Patriot Act actually said.
Paul reacts to the riots in Baltimore during an interview with radio host, Ingraham.
The police have to do what they have to do, and I am very sympathetic to the plight of the police in this…There are so many things [root causes] we can talk about. The breakdown of the family structure, the lack of fathers, the lack of a moral code in our society.
Paul says he is skeptical about Iran deal, but would favor negotiating with them over war.
I’m going to keep an open mind and look at the agreement — I do believe that negotiation is better than war. I’ve been a big proponent of negotiation…I think we should do everything we can to stop them. I’ve voted for sanctions to try to stop them. I’m somewhat skeptical of the president’s agreement; however, I am in favor [of] negotiations over war, and I think I’ve been one of the reasonable people in our party who has not been beating the drums for war.
Paul addresses his first presidential candidate campaign rally in Milford, New Hampshire. He talks about promoting personal freedom, repealing Obamacare and cutting back on defense spending and foreign aid.
It angers me to see mobs burning our flag and chanting, ‘Death to America’ in countries that receive millions of dollars of our foreign aid.
Cruz welcomes fellow Republican Paul to 2016 presidential race.
I am glad to welcome my friend Rand Paul into the 2016 GOP primary. Rand is a good friend, and we have worked side by side on many issues. I respect his talent, his passion, and the work he has done for Kentuckians and Americans in the U.S. Senate. His entry into the race will no doubt raise the bar of competition, help make us all stronger, and ultimately ensure that the GOP nominee is equipped to beat Hillary Clinton and to take back the White House for Republicans in 2016.
Paul officially launches his 2016 presidential election campaign on the Republican ticket in Louisville, Kentucky.
Today begins the journey to take America back…The Washington machine that gobbles up our freedoms and invades every nook and cranny of our lives must be stopped…I am running for president to return our country to the principles of liberty and limited government.
Paul wins the Constitutional Champion award given out by The Constitution Project, a bipartisan legal watchdog group. Group’s president:
Sen. Paul has been a vocal critic of NSA spying. He introduced legislation declaring that the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution shall not be construed to allow any U.S. government agency to search the phone records of Americans without a warrant based on probable cause, and has made it clear that he will vote against any extension of the Patriot Act provisions expiring in June.
Paul says that he has no regrets on sending open letter to Iran regarding the negations on nuclear deal in an interview with Beck on his radio show.
I don’t want just any old agreement, I want the agreement to mean something. Most of the sanctions [against Iran] were passed by Congress. The president can’t undo legislation on his own. This is this constant war we have with him that he thinks he can write or un-write law.
Paul wins the 2015 Conservative Political Action Conference straw poll for potential GOP presidential candidates, with 26% of votes.
Our party is filled with constitutional conservatives who have chosen to stand with me for a third consecutive straw poll victory.
Paul blames politicians and the war on drugs for the Ferguson tragedy in an op-ed for Time. Rand writes:
In the search for culpability for the tragedy in Ferguson, I mostly blame politicians. Michael Brown’s death and the suffocation of Eric Garner in New York for selling untaxed cigarettes indicate something is wrong with criminal justice in America. The War on Drugs has created a culture of violence and put police in a nearly impossible situation. In Ferguson, the precipitating crime was not drugs, but theft. But the War on Drugs has created a tension in some communities that too often results in tragedy.
Paul calls the war against ISIS ‘illegal’ in an op-ed piece published by the Daily Beast.
This war is now illegal. It must be declared and made valid, or it must be ended.
Paul addresses the issue of foreign policy in a speech at the Center for National Interest in New York.
We need a foreign policy that recognized our limits, preserves our might and a common sense conservative realism of strength and action. America shouldn’t fight wars where the best outcome is stalemate. America shouldn’t fight wars when there is no plan for victory. America shouldn’t fight wars that aren’t authorized by the American people. America should and will fight wars when the consequences — intended and unintended — are worth the sacrifice. The war on terror is not over, and America cannot disengage from the world.
Paul says White House officials are downplaying the seriousness of Ebola in an interview with CNN.
[The Obama administration] has downplayed how transmissible it is. They say it’s the exchange of bodily of fluids. Which makes people think, ‘Oh, it’s like AIDS. It’s very difficult to catch. If someone has Ebola at a cocktail party they’re contagious and you can catch it from them.[The administration] should be honest about that. They say all it takes is direct contact to get this. If you listen carefully, they say being three feet from someone is direct contact. That’s not what most Americans think is direct contact. You start to wonder about a basic level of competence.
Paul accuses Barack Obama of downplaying the possible threat of Ebola in an interview with Talk Radio 1210 WPHT.
It adds to just a litany of things that the President has let us down on and failed to show leadership. So, I think it’s one thing after another, it’s not just one issue. The lack of leadership on Ebola, the equivocating, the downplaying, the underplaying, the, sort of, trying to calm everyone with really not being completely frank about the transmissibility of the disease, I think, doesn’t help any of them at the polls.
Paul discusses his views on same sex marriage in an interview with Peter Hamby of CNN during an appearance at the College of Charleston.
I don’t want my guns registered in Washington or my marriage. Founding Fathers all got married by going down to the local courthouse. It is a local issue and always has been. Society’s changing, I mean, people change their minds all the time on this issue, and even within the Republican Party, there are people whose child turns out to be gay and they’re like, oh well maybe I want to rethink this issue. So it’s been rethought. The President’s rethought the issue. So I mean, a lot of people have rethought the issue. The bottom line is, I’m old fashioned, I’m a traditionalist. I believe in old-fashioned traditional marriage. But, I don’t really think the government needs to be too involved with this, and I think that the Republican Party can have people on both sides of the issue.
Paul criticizes Clinton’s foreign policy in a Wall Street Journal op-ed, saying that interventionism led to the rise of ISIS:
To interventionists like former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, we would caution that arming the Islamic rebels in Syria created a haven for the Islamic State. We are lucky Mrs. Clinton didn’t get her way and the Obama administration did not bring about regime change in Syria. That new regime might well be ISIS.
[…] Those who say we should have done more to arm the Syrian rebel groups have it backward. This is not to say the U.S. should ally with Assad. But we should recognize how regime change in Syria could have helped and emboldened the Islamic State, and recognize that those now calling for war against ISIS are still calling for arms to factions allied with ISIS in the Syrian civil war.
In the Road To Majority Conference, Paul accuses the government of funding Islamic rebels to kill Christians. He also believes tax payers will eventually be used to provide financial aid to Palestine Authority, Hamas relations.
At the Iowa State Republican Party Convention Paul speaks out against racial biases in the war on drugs. He informs the party that three out of four prisoners are black or brown, when whites are reported to use drugs just as much. Those arrested are mostly of low economic class and cannot afford a good attorney, which makes them easy to arrest. Paul believes that although marijuana is a problem, people should not be locked up for years for mistakes made when they were young. He also supports giving ex-cons the right to vote again.
If the GOP is going to be the party of family values, it should bother Republicans that in 1980 there were 200,000 kids with a dad in prison and now there are two million.
Paul supports Labrador’s bid for House majority leader, replacing Eric Cantor. At the Republican Convention:
I think Raul would be a great leader.
Paul will join with Bloomberg, for a monthly TV series about immigration reform. On the series, Paul will discuss his reasons for opposing the Senate bill on reform and his views on amnesty. Paul does not support amnesty and believes immigration requirements should be enforced and updated.
I realize that subsidizing something creates more of it, and do not think the taxpayer should be forced to pay for welfare, medical care and other expenses for illegal immigrants.
Paul tells the press that Clinton’s book, Hard Choices, is not impressive and not worth plagiarizing. He makes no positive statements about any part of the book, and references Harry Potter as a better read. Paul finds it unlikely that he will read another Clinton publication and calls it a waste of time.
I read a lot of books, and it’s rare that I don’t find a passage or two to lift here or there.
At a GOP convention, Paul criticizes the Obama Administration’s trade for Bowe Bergdahl and jokes that Democrats should have been traded. He goes on to name a few he would trade, including Hillary Clinton.
I don’t know about y’all, but I’ve been a little bit annoyed with the president…Releasing five Taliban senior officials is not only against the law, it’s illegal and wrong and he should never have done it.
In an interview with Fox News, Paul makes statements that support the use of drones. Critics say his statements contradict earlier statements against using drones as part of U.S. national security policy. When asked his thoughts on whether he would support killing the released Guantanemo Bay prisoners if they threaten a terroist attack:
I would say there would be drones with their name on it.
Paul goes back to his opthamology roots and performs eye surgeries at his home. Paul has 17 years experience in opthamology and plans to one day return to the medical field. As a member of Congress, he is not allowed to perform surgeries in exchange for money, but can do them for free. This allows him to continue to keep up his skills. Most of his patients are elderly and cannot afford health care.
I think that we need to have people who are willing to reclaim their place in regular life after politics and not just say, ‘You go into politics and that’s what you’re going to do forever.’
In an event at UC Berkley, Paul speaks about his lawsuit against the Obama Administration and his concern over the National Security Agency’s telephone policies.
I don’t know about you, but I’m worried. If the CIA is spying on Congress, who exactly can or will stop them?
In a Politico survey of over 25 GOP campaign managers, Paul is the top pick as GOP congressional candidate. The runner up choice is New Jersey’s Chris Christie. The survey does not reflect a large majority, however it gives a glimpse into a possible outcome of the Republican presidential primary.
Paul says that GOP must evolve and adapt to ensure that the party has a bright future. He also says that he would make a decision on running for president within 2 years.
Whether or not I am going to run for president, that decision will come probably in two years, and [we] will in the meantime try to be part of the national debate…We think the Republican Party needs to evolve and adapt, or we are going to become a permanent minority party.
Paul defeats Conway to be elected as United State senator from Kentucky. He received 55.7 % of the total votes polled.
I have a message from the people of Kentucky, a message that is loud and clear and does not mince words: We’ve come to take our government back.
In a speech to students at Western Kentucky University, Paul accuses Cheney of manipulating the Iraq war for his own benefit. He also warns the students to be fearful of large companies that may influence politics. Paul recalls an interview of Cheney in 1995
He’s being interviewed, I think, by the American Enterprise Institute, and he says it would be a disaster, it would be vastly expensive, it’d be civil war, we would have no exit strategy. He goes on and on for five minutes. Dick Cheney saying it would be a bad idea. And that’s why the first Bush didn’t go into Baghdad. Dick Cheney then goes to work for Halliburton. Makes hundreds of millions of dollars as their CEO. Next thing you know, he’s back in government and it’s a good idea to go into Iraq.
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