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March 21, 2014 3:55 PM Ron Who?

By Ed Kilgore

I noted the other day that Ron Paul had taken a very public and very provocative (especially to Republicans) position on the Russia-Ukraine confrontation that seemed to be at odds with that of his son, who is for all intents and purposes already running for president. So journalists with a little more access to the Kentuckian have been asking him about it, and he’s decided to clam up about his old man generally, as reported by the Daily Caller’s Alex Pappas in an interview with Rand himself (h/t Dave Weigel):

Reporters sometimes ask Paul, he said, to comment on his father’s beliefs. But he said he’s done doing that. “I’ve pretty much quit answering” those questions.
“I’ve been in the Senate three years, and I have created a record of myself,” he said. “And I have my opinions.”
He referenced George W. Bush’s campaign for president in 2000.
“Did he get tons of questions about his dad?” Paul asked. “I don’t know that he did, to tell you the truth.”

Uh, yeah: W.’s relationship with his old man was a central element of the “invisible primary” in the 2000 cycle. The associated name ID helped W. take an earlier lead, and a really big moment occurred when Robert Novak declared W. the “biological heir of his father but the ideological heir of Ronald Reagan.” I also don’t recall W. ever refusing to talk about his father’s record, either.

Rand can’t have it both ways, enjoying the inherited support of the Revolution and the name ID that comes along with his old man’s legacy (without which I presume he would still be practicing opthalmology), but then acting like he has no more obligation to talk about him than about any other random pol.

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.

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