The McCreary County Record

State News

August 7, 2009

Paul all the way in Senate race

Issue is federal debt for "outsider"

FRANKFORT — Rand Paul is in but he says he’ll run as an outsider.

The self-described independent, conservative Republican is now “formally” a candidate for the U.S. Senate seat held by Republican Jim Bunning who has said he won’t seek re-election because he hasn’t been able to raise sufficient funds to mount an effective campaign.

Paul, a Bowling Green ophthalmologist and son of Texas Congressman Ron Paul who ran unsuccessfully last year for the Republican nomination for president, made his announcement on a national Fox News broadcast Wednesday evening.

Also in the race on the Republican side are Secretary of State Trey Grayson and Elkton businessman and veteran Bill Johnson. Democrats seeking their party’s nomination are Lt. Gov. Daniel Mongiardo, Attorney General Jack Conway, Eastwood businessman Maurice Sweeney and former U.S. Customs Agent Darlene Fitzgerald Price.

In a conference call with reporters Thursday, Paul said his primary reason for running is his belief that “the federal debt is out of control (and) is consuming the country and we have to do something differently than we have in the past.”

He said he will vote against any unbalanced budget – whether proposed by Democrats or his own Republican Party.

“I don’t see the debt as a Democrat or Republican problem,” Paul said. “Both parties are unwilling to address the debt.”

The solution he said is “to mandate a rule such as a balanced budget amendment that will prevent politicians from spending money they don’t have.”

Paul thinks he can raise $2 million for an effective primary campaign and plans an Aug. 20, online “money bomb” solicitation with a goal of 10,000 contributors giving $100 each. That would produce $1 million in one day.

He said he has four fundraisers planned in Texas, three of which will be attended by his father who raised significant money online in his quest for the Republican presidential nomination. They younger Paul said he may ask his father to come to Kentucky to campaign or help him raise money. But while his father’s notoriety may help his Senate campaign with national donors, the younger Paul said, “I’ll have to win on my own merits.”

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