Political Animal


May 14, 2013 1:29 PM Sins of the Father

By Ed Kilgore

While looking for reports of Rand Paul’s speech at the Iowa GOP “Lincoln Dinner” fundraiser late last week, I ran across this observation from The Iowa Republican’s Kevin Hall:

It’s called the “Lincoln Dinner” for a reason. Yet, there was no one single mention of Abraham Lincoln during the event.

Well, I’ve attended more than one Jefferson-Jackson dinner over the years, and don’t recall too many references in the many speeches on those occasions about the third and seventh presidents, either. But Hall adds this:

I would have been very intrigued to hear Rand Paul’s take on Abe, especially since his father showed open disdain for the Great Emancipator.

Hall included a link to a 2011 National Memo article by Avi Lenilman about Ron Paul’s argument that Lincoln’s decision to fight for the Union was a tragic mistake.

It’s a reminder that if Rand Paul really does want to be president, he’s going to need to figure out what to say not only about his own history of questionable associations and utterances, but those of his father, in whose political army he served for quite some time. Those who want to Stand With Rand, moreover, will be forced to recognize they are standing with some mighty sketchy company.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.


  • Slideguy on May 14, 2013 1:39 PM:

    "Those who want to Stand With Rand, moreover, will be forced to recognize they are standing with some mighty sketchy company."

    Republican politics is less about ideas and more about tribal identification. As long as Rand declares himself the enemy of those liberals, the faithful will line up at the polls to vote for him.

  • c u n d gulag on May 14, 2013 1:41 PM:

    Seems more like 'extreme company,' than "sketchy company."

  • Snarki, child of Loki on May 14, 2013 1:47 PM:

    The aqua-buddha2016.com domain is still available, just sayin'

  • collin on May 14, 2013 2:18 PM:

    I am of the opposite opinion on Rand because of his father he is still the 'libertarian' choice for President. He is getting away with all kinds of very pro-R and anti-L speeches lately that TAC and Reason comment sections are starting to howl at him. (Rand Paul is six months away from supporting the Patriot Act and 12 months from naming Tom Bolton his Secretary Of State.) At this point, I given up that Rand would at least be the 'right choice' for the Rs in 2016 as he is one 'Dick Cheney was our greatest VP' away from getting a Jennifer Rubin recommendation. Aqua Buddha 2016!

  • Marty V Buren on May 14, 2013 9:28 PM:

    Ron isn't sketchy company, he has very reasoned positions. Demagoguery works with the shallow, of course.

    Ron is the thinking man's candidate, for those who won't use their brains and prefer this sort of 'oh no he mentioned the unmentionable!' drivel, there is no hope in any event.

    I wouldn't mind, except they are dragging the rest of us down with them.