June 09

Paul’s Biggest Hurdle? The GOP

Senator Rand Paul has an advantage that other presidential candidates do not: a popular father who never went higher than Congressman and has a group of die hard supporters. This support group which he will inherit from his father is a blessing and a curse. Paul has to navigate the tough Republican scene, which includes a diverse group with strong beliefs. He has to appeal to his father’s base, but also reach Conservative Republicans who may disagree with Ron Paul’s views. Most importantly, foreign policy.

Libertarian’s at their core strongly oppose any foreign military involvement. They look at overseas involvement and ask: what was the point? Furthermore, many believe in a corrupt government that makes money off of government officials support of war that help companies like Notrhrup Gruman and other military groups. If you ask one of them for an example, they have many.

So, with a fragmented party, Rand Paul has to practice extreme diplomacy, and toe the line between two opposing beliefs. The extremity of the different points of view can be seen in Paul’s opposition to the PATRIOT Act, where many of his Republican collegues disapprovingly watched as Paul held the Senate floor talking about NSA interference with Americans’ personal freedom. The conservatives view that NSA surveillance is necessary for preventing terrorism, and did not stand with Rand on the issue. While this viewpoint can hurt him, if he plays it right, it can also help him.

Paul is basing his entire campaign on taking the power away from the federal government. As president, he promises to return rights to the people and uphold the Constitution. For many who think Washington is broken, Paul promises to fix it. His strategy, is to reestablish the American dream through rebuking Washington bueracratic branches. While this is a rallying cry for many politicians, Paul has proven his dedication while in the Senate.

So, the real question is if the Republican base is ready for this type of reform. While many Democrats who do not want another Clinton in the White House have said the only other candidate they would vote for instead is Senator Rand Paul, his biggest hurdle will be to get the conservative Republican base to see his vision, and trust that his reforms are the right move forward. For this reason, Paul has been spending every second outside Capitol Hill meeting voters, in multiple locations, and promising them a strong devotion to our Founding Father’s core principles. Liberty and freedom are his buzzwords, and his thinks he is the right person to return these ideals to the country.

Paul’s biggest problem, therefore, is the Republican Party. Although this is his base, the numerous candidates speaks for itself of how divided the “core” really is for many. While inheriting his father’s base, and while also winning over Independent or even Democrat voters, Paul will have to navigate strategically through voters who may agree more with Senator Ted Cruz or even Governor Mike Huckabee. If he can do this, then maybe with his father’s base, he will have a chance.