Senator Rand Paul is having a bad week. Forget that his pal Ken Cuccinelli lost in Virginia or that his rival Chris Christie cruised to an easy reelection in New Jersey.
No, the real problem is that in the past few days it has been revealed he lifted stuff from a Heritage Foundation case study and for his book Government Bullies and he has been axed by the Washington Times over it.
In all honesty, I don’t think Paul did it on purpose and yes sometime the staffers who help Senators write books do make mistakes. The problem isn’t what Paul did but he is reacting to it.
Paul is acting like he is some kind of a victim and that if people don’t start playing nice he is going to take his toys and go home. Here is what he told the New York Times:
Mr. Paul, when asked if he believed that the accusations could turn off some presidential supporters, indicated that the degree of what he termed “unfair criticism” might factor into whether he decides to run.
“It’s also what people hate about politics, and it’s why, frankly, members of my family are not too interested in politics, period, or wanting me to do more of this. To tell you the truth, people can think what they want, I can go back to being a doctor anytime, if they’re tired of me. I’ll go back to being a doctor, and I’ll be perfectly content.”
Does anyone really believe he’s just going to turn around and go back to being a doctor? Of course not but it just sounds so whiny. Are we now supposed to drop to our knees and beg him to stay in the U.S. Senate and pretty-please be the next President? Come on.
If Paul runs in 2016 does he think the criticisms, scrutiny and attacks won’t get worse? He can ask anyone associated with John McCain’s 2000 Presidential campaign what happens when the candidate starts complaining about being criticized. It is not pretty for a campaign.
On a larger point, given how demanding the job of being President is, Americans don’t want someone who is going to whine when things don’t go there way. Does Paul get how much scrutiny Obama, Bush and Clinton all lived under during their time in the White House and how much the public doesn’t want to hear the most powerful person in the world complaining in tough times?
Rand Paul needs to get through this bump in the road as soon as possible. The best way to do it is to admit his mistake, which he’s done, and then shut up about it, still needs to be done.