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Why Rand Paul’s Campaign Will Go Down In History

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I haven’t written much about Rand Paul in a while – not because I don’t like the guy, but because I feel like his most loyal endorsers are often the better sort to be writing about his current campaign. After all, those who love you most are the best voices to have in your corner when you’re trying to become the next leader of the free world. But now that Rand’s campaign looks to be coming to a forced, rousing, and highly resisted end sooner than later (though I would be happy to be wrong on that prediction), I feel there is now something more I can say about it worth listening to – even for people like myself who weren’t 100% on board with his decisions made along the way.

First and foremost, Rand Paul aligns with many of American voters’ views on the issues. He may be more staunchly right-leaning than more outwardly libertarian politicians like Gary Johnson, but his anti-establishment, anti-spying, anti-war, anti-drone, and anti-drug war message still makes him much more in-touch with the American people than any other Republican in the running for the 2016 election. The fact that his poll numbers took so long to finally bring him into the top tier (unfortunately, after his previously lower poll results already disqualified him from the most recent GOP debate stage) is likely due to the lack of support from his own party, and not that the American people in general wouldn’t have agreed with his message – they would have, had they only gotten more opportunities to hear them from his own mouth.

Ironically, now that Rand has been ousted from the debates, he has taken that opportunity to become much more prominent in the media – a rogue without a care aside from dropping the truth on as many heads as possible. He debated the host of The Daily Show on all the hot-button issues – and wasn’t booed. He flipped off the crony Republican establishment while appearing on ABC for refusing to allow his voice (which is sorely needed in the GOP) to be heard. He has overnight become a completely different kind of celebrity than we could have predicted just days ago, and he’s accomplished all of this by being an absolute maverick for the majority of his campaign. There have been some missteps, as I mentioned before, but more an initial presidential run, this man has succeeded far longer and at far more than I think anyone, even his most die hard followers, dreamed of.

This is a man who wears clothing made from hemp to work as a brilliant way of endorsing complete pot legalization without having to say a word; a man who did an honest-to-god filibuster in the name of ensuring his citizens’ safety from the president’s drone program; who took legal action to try and audit the much-too-secretive activities of the Federal Reserve; who told the entire debate stage and the leaders of his own party that they were warmongers; the list goes on. Rand Paul, despite all his flaws and misfires, has still had one of the most important presidential campaigns in U.S. history. Because unlike his father, Rand actually has a shot at becoming president someday. Not this time around, but perhaps in the near future. Already this campaign has taught me that a liberty-minded candidate can last far longer in a primary election than I ever thought possible (though I still think we need to double our chances and start taking freedom-loving Democrats more seriously, as well), and that is huge.

This impact is not illusory. Just this past debate, the first one this cycle without Rand present, saw an enormous drop in viewership. (Not-so-)coincidentally, the entire Rand Paul fan base had decided to boycott that event. In addition, what Rand Paul supporters were in attendance at the debate itself disrupted it at one point by loudly chanting the following mantra: “We want Rand! We want Rand! We want Rand!” It means that despite their best efforts, the GOP overlords failed in their attempt to silence Rand Paul’s voice, and perhaps in some ways even created a monster by trying so hard to do so. Now, everyone knows who Rand Paul is, because he chose to snub the ridiculous “undercard” debate and take his show on the road instead. All the kids who were previously unaware of Rand’s message have now heard it time and again, as Dr. Paul appeared on multiple talk shows and news programs just this past week. As a result, he has become more recognizable than ever. Even though he may not win this round, make no mistake – we have witnessed history in Rand Paul’s senate actions and his subsequent run for the presidency. It is not at all a stretch to expect an even larger supporter turnout for the real voting period, and if nothing else the next time around.

And there will be a next time. Make no mistake about that.

Micah J. Fleck is a journalist and political writer who has spent the past several years developing his political outlook through independent research. While an enthusiast of both American history and economics, Mr. Fleck typically comes at his topics from a more anthropological perspective. His writings and interviews have been featured in various publications - including The National Review, The Libertarian Republic, The Wall Street Journal, and The College Fix - and he is currently earning a degree in anthropology at Columbia University.

  • Amber Brighton

    Don’t count him out yet – no one has cast any votes! If you agree with Rand Paul’s message, make an earnest appeal to everyone you know to help spread it. Tell them that they are not getting the whole story from the media and they would serve themselves well to at least take a listen to really see what Rand Paul is all about. This video is a great start: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OMOx-fsXz8o – also, check his voting record at https://votesmart.org/candidate/key-votes/117285/rand-paul#.VpwVw_krKUk – he’s been introducing legislation that the American people want. The problem is with the 80% of the Senate that is bought and sold by lobbyists. It’s not about party – it’s about freedom vs. tyranny. When people finally wake up they will see that Rand Paul is the only candidate that deserves their support, and we can all do our part to try to spread the message. His is far too important a voice to silence or to count out too soon.

  • KCTed

    The election process has not even yet begun. They want to ditch him based entirely on media contrived polling and constant manipulative media coverage. To ignore him is to resign one’s self to allowing media and the financial elite to choose our nominee.

  • WTS

    Tell Rinse Pubis I said to go to hell

  • Julie S

    Everybody in Republican Party and Libertarian party need to see the connections among the establishments include Trump. They all had at one time at their point working for or raised the fundraising for or donated to is George Bush 41 and 43, even Jeb Bush as the governor.. All of them seem to protect each other while playing as bad ( disagreements) guys to each other.. In fact almost everything they all agree on and at the same time trying to tell you they each have the different views.. It is like trying to get the Republicans not to see the connection. Step out of box to realize it.

    That is why they are trying to push Rand Paul out because he is a different kind of Republican and who wants to represent for little people just like Thomas Jefferson left Federalist party as a different kind democratic-republican to represent little people, farmers and small business owners and the voices wanted to be heard and make sure their voices to be heard and free from tranny and olicharchy.

    The (then) Federalist party and elite Republican party and elite democrat party have in common is the similar groups of nobles, bankers, lawyers, well to do connections, and the connection to high level of power such via as monarchy, (which could be family dynasty).

  • Joe

    I agree with everything you said about Rand, just not about the pessimism. I expect he will be the nominee and am doing what I can to make sure he is.

  • Anita

    Good article but as Rand has said “We are in it to win it” We wont stop supporting Rand.. He is very logical in all of his policies without all the rhetoric, as I say.. all fact no brag.. Rand has not gone to big businesses or bankers for his support but the actual people that he would be representing have supported his campaign.. truly grass roots & that also means, unlike cruz & rubio Rand is not under anyone’s debt or obligations.. only to the people.. While others did not bother to attend to their Senate or governor jobs Rand Still did his & did it well.. while others spent their time hunting down more bankers & Billionaires Rand was doing free eye surgeries for the poor, Even found the time to go to Haiti to do surgeries for the poor & still did his senate job.. Yes, We Support Rand 100% and are Proud to say so… #PresidentRand

  • TI GS

    The grassroots is Rand Paul, we will stomp for him like we did for his father. We are not here to win a presidency, we are here to win minds to grow the movement, this is not about 2016, this is about infinity.

  • Origanalist

    Lets at least wait for the early caucuses before writing the 2016 obituary.

  • blondgirl81

    Rand has been working in the Senate for us, now it is time for us to work for him. Show your support of Rand in public. Politely talk to people about Rand’s ideas if an opportunity presents itself. And VOTE! Car pool to the polls!

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