Sen. Rand Paul continues to impress in the senate. During todayís hearings, he pressed Secretary Clinton harder than any of his colleagues over her failure of leadership regarding Benghazi. (Last month, I also praised his proposed FISA amendment.)
Predictably, Paulís confrontation with Clinton fueled speculation about 2016. The Washington Postís Aaron Blake went so far as to write that, ďSen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is quickly establishing himself as the conservative option in the 2016 Republican presidential primary.Ē
There is little doubt that Rand Paul could be formidable in a GOP primary. He would likely tap into his fatherís political network, and also expand his base by attracting more mainstream Republicans than his father ever could.
But he canít win a general election ó and he shouldnít try.
If you thought the 2012 stakes were high, the 2016 stakes are even higher. Itís going to get ugly. Conservatives who witnessed how Mitt Romney was demonized (in a pretty similar manner as I predicted) must now realize that it is the goal of liberals to cast Republicans as crazy, evil, racists.
Fair or not, Paul would be easily cast in that negative light.
Some of it is his fault. His comments to Rachel Maddow about the Civil Rights Act of 1964 will be used against him. This, of course, would only confirm the negative narrative his liberal opponents (and their friends in the media) wish to perpetuate. (Note: I get that Rand Paul hates racism ó and that his position is a nuanced one. But that wonít matter in our sound bite media culture.)
Some of itís not his fault. Itís not fair to blame him for the sins of his father, but that wonít stop the media or Paulís political opponents. It might not be fair for Rep. Ron Paulís racist newsletters to impact his sonís presidential ambitions ó but you know they will.
All of this becomes even more important if Hillary is the Democratic nominee. If thatís the case, you can expect the ďwar on womenĒ meme to come back in a big way. Already, Mediate is headlining todayís spat as a sort of domestic dispute ó ďRand Paul Brutalizes Hillary Clinton.Ē
The 2016 elections are a long way off, but itís not too early to ask this question: Is Rand Paul really the best messenger for 21st century conservatism ó in this political environment ó with so much at stake?
Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2013/01/23/wh...#ixzz2IpTBaruZ