Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) made a bold prediction about the remaining presidential elections in his lifetime during an interview with Glenn Beck that aired Thursday.
“I think Republicans will not win again in my lifetime … unless they become a new GOP, a new Republican Party,” Paul said evenly. “And it has to be a transformation. Not a little tweaking at the edges.”
Paul remained noncommittal about his own speculated presidential ambitions, but said he believes people “from both parties” would rally to a candidate that said “we just need to turn over on all this” and advocated issues like term limits, reading the bills, and single-purpose bills.
The senator expressed little interest in the formation of a third party.
“I think that … you can transform a party,” he maintained. “…I’ve worked for a third party candidate, a guy that was my dad. It’s very difficult. The laws are set against you.”
The two also discussed the Republican Party’s reported issues with conveying its message to voters.
“You have to take your message to people in a way they can understand it,” Paul asserted.
The senator said, for example, that if he is speaking with 1,000 young people, he doesn’t focus on taxes and regulation, but about the government looking at your cellphone.
He added that Republicans have failed to speak with African American and Hispanic communities about how the war on drugs and our legal system has disproportionately affected them.
The primary goal, Paul said, is to present the “ideas of liberty” to everyone.
“There are many people who are open among all these disaffected groups, who really aren’t steadfast supporters of Obama or an ideology,” Paul asserted. “I think they’re open to listening, but we have to have a better message and a better presentation of it.”
“There is a struggle going on within the Republican Party,” Paul admitted. “I tell people it’s not new, and I’m not ashamed of it. I’m proud of the fact that there is a struggle. And I will struggle to make the Republican Party a different party, a bigger party, a more diverse party, and a party that can win national elections again.”
Paul recalled being a “13-year-old kid” at the 1976 convention when Ronald Reagan challenged Gerald Ford, saying there is a successful precedent of conservatives taking on the “establishment.”
“Everybody told Reagan to sit back and shut up,” Paul remarked. “They told him it wasn’t his time, and it wasn’t going to be his time. The establishment wanted Ford … It was bitterly fought, but in the end, Reagan won and the party became a better place, at least for a while. We need to have that debate again, and we need to be a bigger, stronger party.”
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