On Fox News Thursday evening, venerable Republican icon Charles Krauthammer was a guest of Megyn Kelly’s, and she sought his take on the Rand Paul campaign for President.
Specifically, Kelly noted that Paul’s candidacy came under fire very quickly and she wondered how Krauthammer felt the Senator had done in responding to the attacks. Kelly also wondered what Krauthammer thought Senator Paul’s strengths and weaknesses might be in the upcoming primary fight.
Megyn Kelly: Obviously, Rand Paul had some issues over the last 48 hours with the roll out of his campaign, and how he dealt with the media became a distraction that he created, but what is his, as you see it, what is his greatest strength and weakness?
Charles Krauthammer: His strength is his freshness, his strength is the fact that libertarianism has a lot to offer, particularly as critique of conservatism. I am not sure it is applicable as a governing philosophy, but ideas are new and fresh, particularly on domestic affairs. His real problem is that the world has changed over the last several years and that our position abroad has cratered. And when before this happened, because the Obama retreat began in ’09, but doesn’t have its effect immediately, took a half decade. But now the impact is being seen everywhere, as former Defense Secretary, his own Defense Secretary said, the world is exploding all over.
So for Rand Paul, who was on the non-interventionist side of the GOP before all this, that was an advantage, at a time when we were reacting to the fatigue of the Iraq war and the Afghan war. But now that we are seeing results of the retreat, I think that’s working against him in a very serious way. And that’s why you see the testiness and the problems he has had. I don’t think that it is just a media or personality problem, that is a policy problem. He’s got to tack back from the positions he took. To give you one example, he rose to prominence with an 11-hour speech on the floor of the Senate, denouncing drone attack on and war Anwar al-Awlaki in Yemen who was an American citizen behind some bombings attempted against the U.S. I don’t think Rand Paul would make that same speech today because it would be received very negatively.
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