Sen. Rand Paul, heir apparent to his father’s political movement, said he’s thinking about making a run for president.
“We are going to have to have somebody a little bit different than we’ve had in the past,” the Kentucky Republican said in a radio interview Friday with Andrea Tantaros and Jason Mattera. “Someone who can appeal to people in New England and on the West Coast. Someone who has a little more of a libertarian-Republican approach, I think, would have a better chance with independents and moderates.”
“And so, you know, we’ll think about it,” he said.
Paul won a seat last week on the influential Senate Foreign Relations Committee, meaning he would be well-placed in the national conversation should he choose to mount a 2016 bid. Following President Barack Obama’s November re-election, Paul said he wants to eliminate mandatory minimum sentences for marijuana possession and work out an immigration plan with an “eventual path” to citizenship for illegal immigrants — both signs he’s seeking broader support than just the Tea Party movement that helped put him in the Senate.
He’s also set to travel to Israel, a strong indication that he’s seeking to separate himself from his father, who faced strong criticism about his attitude toward the Jewish state, particularly as it related to foreign aid.
Paul said he believes the just-retired Texas Rep. Ron Paul was “unfairly characterized” about Israel, pointing out that his father’s intellectual heroes are all Jewish.
“There’s never been any sort of Jewish problem other than that he did talk about foreign aid and so do I, but I think sometimes that gets misinterpreted,” Rand Paul said. “People think oh, you’re just talking about Israel, and in fact I spend most of my time emphasizing that most of this foreign aid I’m talking about is going to enemies of Israel.”
In an interview with TheBlaze during the Republican National Convention, Rand Paul — who endorsed GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney — was modest on whether he would automatically inherit his father’s vast well loyal supporters.
“I don’t think anyone can really get credit and say I’m the new leader of the Ron Paul movement,” Paul said.
Listen to Paul’s interview with Tantaros and Mattera below, via the Washington Examiner. Presidential bid comments come at the 13:00 mark:
(h/t: Washington Examiner)