Rand Paul, the new Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate seat from Kentucky is a hero of the Tea Party.
Some hero. For starters, he said that he believes businesses should have the right to refuse seating to minority customers. Welcome to the Kentucky of 1955.
And now he's out there saying that President Obama and his administration are anti-business and "un-American" for criticizing oil giant BP (officially British Petroleum) over their handling of the oil spill.
I guess "American values" now includes having no clue how to stop the gusher, and it's perfectly OK (pro-business) if you kill off miles of coastline for at least a generation. Hey, it's 'business,' right?
One almost has to feel for minority leader Mitch McConnell. He and Senate political architect John Cornyn (R-TX) pushed his state's other Republican Senator, the gaffe-prone Jim Bunning, into retirement so he could put his hand-picked candidate, Trey Grayson up against the Democrats in the general. But then Paul beat Grayson Tuesday, and by a large margin. And then the past reached out and grabbed him. Don't blame Democrats for that either. Paul's past statements are public record; if Grayson was too dumb to look them up, well maybe he should have. Paul said it, didn't he? And it was Paul, and Paul alone, who contended that not only is it wrong to criticize an oil company for an oil spill, but in fact that to do so is 'un-American.' Presumably that's his favorite adjective, one we can expect to hear pop out of Paul's mouth frequently if he ever gets to the U.S. Senate. Joe McCarthy, anyone?
This has all backfired so exquisitely on McConnell, that Bunning, who was known to resent McConnell for pushing him out of the Senate, can hardly be blamed if he is having a secret but hearty laugh about this somewhere.
Kentucky Republicans have made their choice. Now they have to live with him, at least until November.