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I could've had class. I could've been a contender...
August 8, 2013 7:29 AM   Subscribe

Ron Paul's 2012 campaign implicated in bribery scandal. On the eve of the 2012 Republican Iowa Caucuses, US Rep. Michele Bachmann alleged that Iowa State Senator Kent Sorenson informed her that he had switched his support to Rep. Ron Paul's presidential campaign after being promised a large sum of money. Ron Paul personally denied these claims, but emails and documents were recently leaked, with proposals for the Ron Paul campaign to pay up to $208,000 to Sorenson, his staffers, and his PAC. More damning, a recorded phone call has been released, in which Sorenson admits to being bribed, and implicates Jesse Benton, Ron Paul's former campaign manager, 2010 campaign manager for Rand Paul, and now, the manager of Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's 2014 campaign.
posted by markkraft (68 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite

 
Quelle surprise!
posted by Ice Cream Socialist at 7:31 AM on August 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


I don't see what's wrong. In a fair and perfectly just society, all votes would be put on the market. He merely was paying what the market demanded
posted by symbioid at 7:35 AM on August 8, 2013 [69 favorites]


I had no idea it was illegal for Senators/Congressmen to vote based on whoever is fattening their wallets at any given time.
posted by xqwzts at 7:35 AM on August 8, 2013 [23 favorites]


Kent Sorenson: biggest idiot ever. I mean, jeez, did you learn nothing from Bond villains? You never tell Bond the details of what you did. He'll escape.
posted by inturnaround at 7:36 AM on August 8, 2013


A delightful preview of the Republican Party eating itself.
posted by Sys Rq at 7:37 AM on August 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


Don't expect anything to come out of this. When Virginia's governor was caught blatantly taking illegal gifts and bribes, the media HERE IN VIRGINIA chose instead to focus on Anthony Weiner's crotch.
posted by schmod at 7:37 AM on August 8, 2013 [11 favorites]


It's always interesting when you find the Invisible Hand of the Market slipping a bag of small, unmarked bills into a politicians pocket. Although that's just for the Rational Actors, not the Careful Conspirators.
posted by GenjiandProust at 7:37 AM on August 8, 2013 [14 favorites]


(Frankly, I was surprised to find that Michele Bachmann was caught in a truth.)
posted by markkraft at 7:39 AM on August 8, 2013 [69 favorites]


Any libertarian will tell you the real scandal here is that the bribes weren't backed by the gold standard.
posted by entropicamericana at 7:40 AM on August 8, 2013 [48 favorites]


The idea of a "libertarian presidential candidate" is weird enough as it is. Always seemed like "I'm a dyed-in-the-wool socialist hoping to someday run my own megacorporation - preferably in banking". I don't buy the Trojan Horse strategy, either.

Straight-up bribery for support though, really? I wonder how far he thought he could go with that. I guess astroturfing 4chan wasn't working out as well as they hoped.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 7:40 AM on August 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Gambling? In Casablanca? I'm shocked!
posted by Repack Rider at 7:45 AM on August 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


Don't expect anything to come out of this. When Virginia's governor was caught blatantly taking illegal gifts and bribes, the media HERE IN VIRGINIA chose instead to focus on Anthony Weiner's crotch.

Mike Huckabee was dragged in front of the state ethics board multiple times, often for taking expensive gifts in violation of state law. One of the times he got off, the deciding vote found herself with a nice new job and his name as a reference on her resume. When he left office, he gutted state emergency funds for non-emergency things like, oh, destroying every hard drive in his administration, a not-at-all-suspicious move.

Then he ran for president and nobody hardly said boo about it. Nobody followed up. Nothing happened.

People don't care about scandals that don't involve genitals or schadenfreude-invoking levels of personal embarrassment.
posted by middleclasstool at 7:46 AM on August 8, 2013 [32 favorites]


Error ERROR Michele Bachmann proven right about something DOES NOT COMPUTE.
posted by BlueJae at 7:48 AM on August 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


They get the gravy, we get the train.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 7:48 AM on August 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


It's like watching the fall of the Roman Republic but with crap rhetoric and idiots.
posted by lesbiassparrow at 7:48 AM on August 8, 2013 [19 favorites]


People don't care about scandals that don't involve genitals or schadenfreude-invoking levels of personal embarrassment. Democrats.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 7:48 AM on August 8, 2013 [16 favorites]


Didn't Citizen's United settle the fact that money=speech? He's just swaying voters to his campaign with a very convincing stump speech. USA! USA!
posted by cmfletcher at 7:53 AM on August 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


I'm actually having a hard time calling this "bribery". I usually think of that as referring to money paid to an official to get them to perform some kind of official act. That judge in Pennsylvania who accepted kickbacks from a private juvenile detention facility in exchange for sending kids to said facility? That was a bribe. Nothing else to call it. But support for a presidential campaign isn't something that is done in one's official capacity in most cases.

Also, to the extent that the compensation was intended to pay for campaign staff, I don't have a problem with at all. Someone has to pay those salaries. If it wasn't going to be Bachmann anymore, it needed to be someone. It's not likely that Sorenson would have agreed to just provide those staff for free.

Now don't get me wrong: violating Iowa Senate ethics rules is something different, and quite serious. I've no trouble at all calling this an "illegal gift," or indeed calling it a scumbag move on everyone's part. But it's not like the Paul campaign was trying to get anyone to change their vote on an upcoming bill, to authorize some kind of public act, or take any official act at all, for that matter.

TL;DR: There are more kinds of impropriety than bribery, and I think this was one of those other kinds.
posted by valkyryn at 7:53 AM on August 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


It's like watching the fall of the Roman Republic but with crap rhetoric and idiots.
posted by lesbiassparrow


Honestly, I think the Romans could match us idiot for idiot. We have plenty, but so did they.
posted by COBRA! at 7:54 AM on August 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


schmod: "When Virginia's governor was caught blatantly taking illegal gifts and bribes"

Every time I feel guilty about how much money I spend on my own hobbies / collecting, I'm reminded that there are such things as $6,500 Rolexes in the world, and I feel a pinch better.
posted by Apropos of Something at 7:54 AM on August 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Honestly, we've got a leaks, bribery and scandal tri-fecta here, and all I can feel is... well... approximately zero outrage. I'm completely out of outrage after the constant barrage of NSA revelations.

How can you summon anything but indifference about this infarction?
posted by panaceanot at 7:55 AM on August 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


In the grand scheme of things, $200000 is not really a "large sum of money."
posted by ColdChef at 7:56 AM on August 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Honestly, I think the Romans could match us idiot for idiot. We have plenty, but so did they.

The Romans had lead everywhere. What's our excuse?
(BPA, I bet it's BPA.)
posted by entropicamericana at 7:57 AM on August 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


I'm actually having a hard time calling this "bribery". I usually think of that as referring to money paid to an official to get them to perform some kind of official act.

I'll give you a buck for that quibble. No, five! No, ten!
posted by octobersurprise at 7:57 AM on August 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


I teased my Ron Paul-loving buddy over text, claiming Ron Paul personally bribed the guy. He had known about the charges and denied it. I said, "its bad, Rob, there's a photo of him handing over the money while taking a dick pic."
posted by Ironmouth at 7:58 AM on August 8, 2013 [9 favorites]


Who recorded the cell phone call?
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 8:09 AM on August 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


the manager of Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's 2014 campaign

I was all like "don't care" ... "don't care" ... "don't care" ... YES!!!

I would not be surprised if Mitch doesn't make it to the primary. Fucking asshole.
posted by mrgrimm at 8:11 AM on August 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


(Frankly, I was surprised to find that Michele Bachmann was caught in a truth.)

Even a blind squirrel occasionally finds an acorn...
posted by jim in austin at 8:11 AM on August 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Having a hard time seeing the (illegal) bribery here, too. Sleazy opportunism, sure. And there's the Iowa Senate ethics question. But this is fundamentally one politician trading political favors with another politician, isn't it?
posted by notyou at 8:17 AM on August 8, 2013


Parochial Kentuckian thought: I'm for anything that damages McConnell's chances at re-election.
posted by CincyBlues at 8:22 AM on August 8, 2013


This seems like it could be pretty serious, as far as impacting the Republicans. Not only does it make Mitch McConnell surprisingly vulnerable -- which he was already, both from the Tea Party wing of the GOP and from his Democratic opponent -- but it also could impact Rand Paul's chances for 2016, especially if his dad is shown to know anything about the bribery scandal.

I mean, we're talking Iowa, very early on in the Republican primary. How could you run your campaign effectively and *NOT* know if a couple hundred thousand dollars are missing... unless, of course, you're a complete and utter twit who lacks anything approaching common sense.

This also reenforces one of the largest critiques against the Paul dynasty... that their campaigns let anyone get behind the wheel. In this case, it seems to be a major error in judgement, as Jesse Benton is literally family, marrying Ron Paul's granddaughter in 2008.

Benton was seen as the likely person to head any Rand Paul 2016 campaign, and apparently played a big part in getting Rand Paul to endorse Mitch McConnell, rather than a Tea Partier.

Considering Rand's supporters, there is some serious sucking up going on there. Lots of the people who helped Rand get there are not happy about it.
posted by markkraft at 8:23 AM on August 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Who recorded the cell phone call?

The NSA?
posted by ArkhanJG at 8:25 AM on August 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


"In the grand scheme of things, $200000 is not really a "large sum of money."

Unless, of course, you're a state senator who probably spent a lot of money in order to get elected for a $25,000 a year job.
posted by markkraft at 8:27 AM on August 8, 2013


Honestly, I think the Romans could match us idiot for idiot. We have plenty, but so did they.

Yes, but their idiots were so articulate, with those smart-sounding British accents.

People don't care about scandals that don't involve genitals or schadenfreude-invoking levels of personal embarrassment. Democrats.

Of course. The countdown clock to some right wing pundit mentioning the 1960 presidential election, Chicago, and tombstones starts right about now...
posted by fuse theorem at 8:35 AM on August 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


1. I truly believe that Rand Paul will be the 2016 Republican nominee. He is young, energetic, clueless when it comes to ethics, and has a toehold in some of the big button issues that speak to a variety of people such as government surveillance along with those that speak to the fringe.
2. He knows how to hide his poison.
3. Ironically, his father is too bat-shit toxic to be swept under the rug.

Isn't throwing your father under a bus one of the chief tenets of Rand's objectivism?
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 8:42 AM on August 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


Iowa state senate rules prohibit campaigns from paying senators, either directly or indirectly. Iowa's senate ethics committee is currently looking into this. Presumably, the the FEC and/or FBI may do so as well, as they have reportedly been investigating Bachmann for possibly giving payments to Sorenson too.

So, I guess we know how you survive on only $25K a year...
posted by markkraft at 8:43 AM on August 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


I truly believe that Rand Paul will be the 2016 Republican nominee.

In every competitive Republican presidential primary for the last 40 years, the winner was the guy who came in second the time before (exception: George W. Bush in 2000 -- Pat Buchanan had come in second to Bob Dole in 1996 but dropped out of the race to take over the Reform Party). Republicans just don't like people to come up that fast.

So look for Rick Santorum to get his ass kicked by Hillary Clinton in three years. Rand Paul will be the runner-up and immediately start working toward 2020.
posted by Etrigan at 8:51 AM on August 8, 2013


Oh God yes, Rick Santorum 2016. Rick Santorum isn't comedy gold - Rick Santorum is comedy Platinum! Wrapped in Plutonium, inside carbon nanotubes! With a diamond substrate!
posted by newdaddy at 8:56 AM on August 8, 2013 [11 favorites]


"I teased my Ron Paul-loving buddy over text, claiming Ron Paul personally bribed the guy. He had known about the charges and denied it. I said, "its bad, Rob, there's a photo of him handing over the money while taking a dick pic.""

You're thinking of "Bruno".
posted by markkraft at 8:56 AM on August 8, 2013


In every competitive Republican presidential primary for the last 40 years, the winner was the guy who came in second the time before...

That was the old GOP that we all know and "love". The party is currently in the middle of an internal bloodbath for the future of the party. By 2016, the faction that, generically, comes under the umbrella term of "tea party" will have effectively taken control of the party, making a Rand Paul candidacy far more probable.

Unless, by 2016, things have gotten so weird that Rand is considered too liberal by the faithful base.
posted by Thorzdad at 8:58 AM on August 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I love that there are people noticing that, yeah, perhaps this wasn't illegal.

It may not be illegal but it's corrupt and it's a symptom of a diseased and dying system. Enjoy the fall everyone, good times ahead to be sure.
posted by IvoShandor at 8:58 AM on August 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Let's go to the NSA replay.
posted by petrilli at 9:15 AM on August 8, 2013 [11 favorites]


Honestly, I think the Romans could match us idiot for idiot. We have plenty, but so did they.

But they were actually taught rhetoric. Maybe not to the plebs, but the senators were likely exposed to the subject as children. Our schools focus much more on STEM. One of my AP English teachers I think spent a week discussing rhetoric, but that's about it as far as I can remember.
posted by Thoughtcrime at 9:17 AM on August 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


People don't care about scandals that don't involve genitals or schadenfreude-invoking levels of personal embarrassment.

Maybe we can just Photoshop some genitals over the pile of cash, and this story will get some traction.

Weirdly, my spell checker tried to change that to "gentiles," but that's a different sort of problem with the American Right....
posted by GenjiandProust at 9:19 AM on August 8, 2013


Honestly, I think the Romans could match us idiot for idiot. We have plenty, but so did they.

You know, at least Caesar, for all his illegal activity, seems to have had a vision of how to stabilize the Republic and curb some of its worst excesses. It's not like the guy got stabbed to death because he was screwing over the lower classes....
posted by GenjiandProust at 9:21 AM on August 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


In every competitive Republican presidential primary for the last 40 years, the winner was the guy who came in second the time before (exception: George W. Bush in 2000 -- Pat Buchanan had come in second to Bob Dole in 1996 but dropped out of the race to take over the Reform Party). Republicans just don't like people to come up that fast.

So look for Rick Santorum to get his ass kicked by Hillary Clinton in three years. Rand Paul will be the runner-up and immediately start working toward 2020.


So long as Iowa remains a completely useless arbiter for the Republican Party and New Hampshire remains the first legitimate primary/caucus in presidential elections, there is nothing that will stop Chris Christie from being the GOP frontrunner.

The media loves him, the latest pass given to him being the blatant waste of state funds to hold a special second election just for Cory Booker so fewer Democrats show up on the actual Election Day and let him boast about getting re-elected in a blue state by 30 points. They will blast that for months, and the 2016 campaign season will be about they shape loving him into "are Republicans sick of the Tea Party?" And come New Hampshire, who on earth will beat him there? Santorum? Rand Paul? It's not happening.

Republicans know deep in their hearts (and they'd be correct) that Christie is the Republican most likely to be looked at appreciatively by the political media, and he's the candidate most likely to be able to be an outright asshole to Hillary Clinton and look endearing because of the character he's built for himself. And for all the "waaaah! Not a conservative!" whining you'll get from the hard-right talking heads, they'll settle in for Christie because they will love that he's a tremendous asshole and really hates unions.

Chris Christie is going to be the GOP nominee in 2016, with the complimentary hard-right Southern-state outright lunatic to balance it out for the angry white vote. My guess right now would be Ted Cruz.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:27 AM on August 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


Chris Christie can also play the experimental political manuever: the fat card.

It may be a more powerful manuever than implying the other side are racists, or misogynists, and it certainly will be more effective than making the opposite side out to be ageist, or religiously intolerant.
posted by TwelveTwo at 9:51 AM on August 8, 2013


So long as Iowa remains a completely useless arbiter for the Republican Party and New Hampshire remains the first legitimate primary/caucus in presidential elections, there is nothing that will stop Chris Christie from being the GOP frontrunner.

I disagree.

Chris Christie will enter any GOP primary more despised by the base than Mitt Romney ever was. Because of this. He was already a wishy-washy moderate to the GOP base for doing things like saying "there's nothing wrong with nominating a Muslim judge, are you out of your mind" but hugging Devil Obama was an unpardonable sin.

Remember: there was a very real point where Mitt Romney could have lost the 2012 primaries. From February 28 to Super Tuesday, he came very, very close to losing four states he managed to win: Arizona, Michigan, Wyoming and Ohio. If he had lost even one of the Arizona-Michigan-Wyoming-Washington primaries to Rick Santorum it would have looked like a complete momentum shift and probably would have meant losing Ohio in the bargain. Mitt Romney won the Republican primaries through the power of inertia, and only barely despite the delegate counts, and he did it while trying to beat opponents who for the most part had next to no money.

Christie will have less money behind him than Romney did. He'll have more of the base more furious with him than they ever were with Romney: Christie is more liberal than Romney is, less religious than Romney is (and although being a Mormon hurt Romney with evangelicals, Christie's laissez-faire Catholicism is no better), and he'll have better funded opponents this time around: Santorum will run for certain and get a lot of money behind him this time because last time he showed he was a threat, and Santorum is just the tip of the iceberg.

Ultimately, Christie is just a fat Rudy Giuliani to the GOP base. And they hated Giuliani.
posted by mightygodking at 10:00 AM on August 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


But what if the base has changed?
posted by TwelveTwo at 10:12 AM on August 8, 2013


markkraft: "I mean, we're talking Iowa, very early on in the Republican primary. How could you run your campaign effectively and *NOT* know if a couple hundred thousand dollars are missing... ."

Same way you have a magazine published in your name with pure racially motivated bigotry and claim to know nothing.
posted by symbioid at 10:12 AM on August 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


"So long as Iowa remains a completely useless arbiter for the Republican Party..."

But it's not. That's why both Bachmann and Paul were willing to pay so much to win it.

Iowa gives whoever beats expectations a bounce. It was where Obama got the bounce that helped him nearly win in New Hampshire, and made him start to look seriously electable. It's where John Kerry scored a strong upset, beating John Edwards and Howard Dean.

If you take a look at New Hampshire polls from 2008, before and after Obama's win in Iowa, you'll see about a 6-9% shift to Obama, in just one day. John Edwards never recovered from that, and slipped into an increasingly dwindling third place, with Obama scooping up most of his supporters.

The same thing that helped Obama and Kerry come from behind to win their nominations can make or break Republicans too... if they're electable at a national level. Iowa did help out Huckabee and Santorum substantially in the early part of their races, but ultimately they came up short, largely due to lack of money and depth of support across the entire country. Other candidates stayed in the race, thereby benefiting the guy with deepest pockets.
posted by markkraft at 10:16 AM on August 8, 2013


>>"I mean, we're talking Iowa, very early on in the Republican primary. How could you run your campaign effectively and *NOT* know if a couple hundred thousand dollars are missing... ."
>"Same way you have a magazine published in your name with pure racially motivated bigotry and claim to know nothing."


Exactly. You lie about it, swear your cronies to silence, and hope that most people won't care that much that you're lying.
posted by markkraft at 10:19 AM on August 8, 2013


Giuliani failed in 2008 because anyone who would have supported him favored Romney instead (a bizarre thing that has already been forgotten was how in 2008, CPAC and the conservative right was desperate begging for Romney to win, becuase the alternative was John McCain)

Christie doesn't have this disadvantage because there's no similar competitor for him. Short of a brand new unknown there's simply no other northeastern, urban-based candidate for the GOP. The media-based part of the political elite and their respective money people are going to love him for that. Just as they did for Romney. They could care less about Iowa, care less about straw polls, and care more about the guy who gets good stroke from CNN and will do whatever they want to piss on organized labor. Meanwhile, the three or four guys who stay in to be the Tea Party standardbearer (Paul, Rubio, Santorum, maybe Cruz) are going to each each other.

We also have to factor in that we have barely even begun to experience the insane primal scream that is going to be opposition to Hillary Clinton. I have said, semi-cynically to friends, for years now "oh, you think they hate Barack Obama? Jesus, Obama's just a black guy." The people who think Obama's not a Christian literally think Clinton is Satan.

This election is very quickly going to become "who can best take on Clinton." And they are going to look at Christie in that light. Again: he has personally engineered the election this year to ensure a nearly 30-point victory. He's the Republican who can beat the New Yorker in a northern state. He has already built a safety net for the upcoming misogynist attacks on Clinton with his "shootin' from the hip" persona. Money and support is coming.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 10:21 AM on August 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


Marisa Stole the Precious Thing: The idea of a "libertarian presidential candidate" is weird enough as it is.
Libertarians invariably oppose power held by others. There's nothing inconsistent with one wanting the power for himself.
posted by IAmBroom at 10:32 AM on August 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


*I should add, of course, that this all changes if Scott Walker runs. He would obviously be in the same placement Christie would be. The difference is that Walker has a lot of baggage that can lead to better fundraising for Democrats.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 10:33 AM on August 8, 2013


*I should add, of course, that this all changes if Scott Walker runs. He would obviously be in the same placement Christie would be. The difference is that Walker has a lot of baggage that can lead to better fundraising for Democrats.

The other difference being that Chris Christie also has a weird, blunt charisma (I don't like him at all, but I recognize that he plays well on TV), while Scott Walker looks and sounds like he was sculpted out of a loose, wet cowpie.
posted by COBRA! at 10:45 AM on August 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


Walker currently has one overlooked advantage, he's in pretty tight with RNC chair Reince Preibus, but how valuable that is depends on what happens in 2014.
posted by drezdn at 10:46 AM on August 8, 2013


Christie might win... but polls show that Rand Paul is the likely winner for Iowa, and follows closely behind Christie in New Jersey.

That, and New Jersey is an economic disaster area... not due to the hurricane. In fact, the hurricane actually seems to have created jobs. Oh, that and the fact that Christie cooked the books and still faces a budget deficit, as well as a huge, growing pension deficit.

California, in comparison, is starting to look pretty damn good, after having nearly the worst unemployment in the nation. It is expecting budget surpluses, in fact
posted by markkraft at 10:47 AM on August 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Every one assumes that Hillary Clinton will be the Democratic candidate in 2016. Obama proved that the slam dunk in 2008 was false and someone could easily do it again. Who is to say that Kirsten Gillibrand couldn't be the nominee, or some other senator or governor with less baggage and insane opposition. There's a lot that could happen once the 2014 election is over.
posted by Ber at 10:56 AM on August 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


You know, at least Caesar, for all his illegal activity, seems to have had a vision of how to stabilize the Republic and curb some of its worst excesses.

Unfortunately, these plans seem to have involved endless war, starting with the Parthians. But he was smart. And even wrote a book on grammar, so there's that, I guess.

I am endlessly fascinated with how far out American presidential elections are fought. People event start fighting them before the last one is done, which is impressive. But, given that, you'd think they'd have better and more secure bribery strategies.
posted by lesbiassparrow at 12:27 PM on August 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


McConnell Campaign Manager: ‘I’m Sorta Holding My Nose For Two Years’ (AUDIO)

Schadenfreude is like an addictive drug -- I just keep wanting more and more. Fortunately, they keep delivering.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:53 PM on August 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


I love how the strength of the Republicans, their highly motivated base, has turned out to be made of lead and is dragging them down to the ocean floor.
posted by JHarris at 12:55 PM on August 8, 2013


Don't expect anything to come out of this.

Who does?
posted by juiceCake at 1:43 PM on August 8, 2013


Big business owns the Republican party lock, stock, and barrel. And I predict there will be a Clinton v/ Christie general election because of this.

Christie will be the Republican nominee for the same reason that Romney was the last time around.

He will likely be the only Republican candidate who isn't totally crazy, even though I'd never vote for him.
posted by imjustsaying at 2:55 PM on August 8, 2013


"He will likely be the only Republican candidate who isn't totally crazy..."

...but he'll be more than willing to play one, in order to win the Republican primaries.

(Hopefully, he'll make himself unelectable in the general election during the process.)
posted by markkraft at 5:41 PM on August 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Oh. My. God.
Another secretly taped conversation, apparently leaked by the same individual to the Louisville Courier-Journal, shows Rand / Ron Paul campaign manager Jesse Benton to be... a truly corrupt fool.

Here's the money quote:
“Between you and me I’m sort of holding my nose for two years (as I run Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's campaign), because what we're doing here is going to be a big benefit for Rand in 2016."

So, there ya go. Rand Paul's campaign manager says Rand intends to run in 2016... and he's going to run after doing his best to suck up to the establishment wing of his party.
posted by markkraft at 2:40 AM on August 9, 2013


I love that there are people noticing that, yeah, perhaps this wasn't illegal.

Actually, I think it probably was a violation of the Iowa Senate ethics rules. Whether or not that makes it illegal is an interesting question--it's not like there's a criminal penalty associated with it--but it's certainly some kind of codified misconduct.

My point wasn't that this was legal and thus not a big deal, it was to try to make sure that we're clear about exactly why this is problematic. There are multiple species of corruption, and it's useful to understand what kind we're talking about.
posted by valkyryn at 4:40 AM on August 9, 2013


Rand Paul: ‘I Don’t Think There Is Any Particular Evidence’ Of Black Voters Being Prevented From Voting
posted by homunculus at 8:10 PM on August 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


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