It is easy to understand why Rand Paul feels the need to “punch up” when commenting on GOP rivals like Donald Trump these days. The Kentucky Senator’s sliding poll numbers don’t give him much incentive to lash out at folks like Mike Huckabee or Rick Santorum, who didn’t even make the cut for the main stage in the latest GOP debate. Indeed, Paul still has his sights on cracking the top tier of the Republican contendership and judging from Paul’s recent comments during an appearance on CNN‘s State of the Union, he plans to get back in the running by pointing out the deepest flaws and foibles of Republican frontrunners.
In comments transcribed by MSNBC, Paul cast doubt on Donald Trump’s ability to triumph in a general election, suggesting that a strong Democratic contender would trounce the real estate mogul turned aspiring politician. Advising that Trump would “get wiped” in the course of a significant challenge, Rand Paul dismissed The Donald’s campaign rhetoric as “bits of populism” lacking in “consistent conservative philosophy.”
Rand Paul lumped New Jersey Governor Chris Christie in with Donald Trump, criticizing the candidates for relying on saber rattling and bravado to curry favor with voters.
“I think this is what is very worrisome about not only Trump, but Christie and others on the stage who are really eager to have war, really eager to show how strong they are … And it also gets to temperament. And that’s why it very much worries me to have someone like Donald Trump or a Chris Christie in charge of our nuclear arsenal.”
“America deserves a conservative who knows what he wants,” chides the Rand Paul campaign video.
Support for Ted Cruz among likely Iowa voters surged last week, with Cruz leaping ahead of Trump by as much as ten percentage points in one poll. According to Real Clear Politics, Cruz still leads Donald Trump by nine percentage points in the most recent CBS News/YouGov poll. The men stand at 40 percent and 31 percent respectively, while Rand Paul is tied with the likes of Jeb Bush and Carly Fiorina, who all each two points. Trump is still regarded as the GOP’s national frontrunner.
Rand Paul, who saw his father’s 2008 presidential campaign sparkle and fade in previous decades, will undoubtedly stand at a crossroads when primary season officially gets underway in early 2016. Speaking to CNN, the candidate said he will “reassess” in the event that he fares badly in the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primary. Given his apparent contempt for the current national GOP frontrunner, it is hard to imagine that Rand Paul will be even slightly eager to jump on the Donald Trump bandwagon in the event that Paul bows out prior to the Republican convention in July.
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