March 23, 2010
On March 19, the Associated Press reported that Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson, who is running for a U.S. Senate seat against Rand Paul, will be allowed to oversee the election race. Grayson is Kentucky’s chief elections official. Paul is currently the frontrunner in the Senate primary.
Rand Paul questioned whether Grayson should recuse himself from oversight of the race. Paul sent a letter to Grayson’s Capitol office in January asking for a recusal.
The Kentucky Executive Branch Ethics Commission apparent does not see a conflict of interest. “There’s nothing on the face of it that requires abstention,” said John Steffen, head of the commission.
The Commission reached a unanimous opinion that it is “highly unlikely” that a secretary of state in Kentucky could influence the results of a statewide election “without having the universal cooperation of election officials across the state.” In Kentucky, the secretary of state also serves as chairman of the Kentucky Board of Elections.
“He quite simply, under normal circumstances, lacks the ability to affect the election’s outcome,” the commission concluded in a six-page opinion. Members also said “it seems unlikely that his participation would affect the public’s confidence in the integrity of the executive branch,” according to the Associated Press.
Rand Paul’s political views are at odds with those of the establishment Republican party. He is an ardent critic of the Federal Reserve, the USA PATRIOT Act, the bailout of Wall Street, and the erosion of civil liberties and the Bill of Rights under the contrived global war on terror. Paul opposes the Department of Education, the war in Iraq, and the federal income tax.
Paul believes his political philosophy “resonates in the Republican primary. I think what we’re finding is as we get our message out — is that the message is actually popular,” he told Judge Andrew Napolitano last November. “I think there is a disconnect between the Republican primary voter who does believe, like myself, in limited constitutional government, in our leaders who have sometimes let us down. It is like the bank bailout. I said I have yet to meet a Republican primary voter who would have voted for it.”
Establishment Republicans, however, vehemently oppose the Libertarian faction of their party. In October, Lindsay Graham told a town hall meeting he would not allow Ron Paul to “hijack” the Republican party. Graham also said the GOP will not be “the party of angry white guys,” a reference to the Tea Party and patriot movements.
In February, Republican and former presidential hopeful and Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee criticized the CPAC event for its support of Ron Paul and the Tea Party movement. “CPAC has becoming increasingly more libertarian and less Republican over the last years, one of the reasons I didn’t go this year,” Huckabee said in an interview with Fox News, where he is a paid analyst and has his own show.
This article was posted: Tuesday, March 23, 2010 at 5:00 am