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'Tea Party' supporter Rand Paul wins GOP Senate primary in Kentucky (Updated)

Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul of Kentucky

The ill-defined but angry "tea party" movement is one step closer to having its first U.S. senator.

In what could be an indication of how voters feel in these days of big federal spending, Kentuckians today chose tea party supporter Rand Paul as the Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by incumbent Republican Jim Bunning.

The 47-year-old son of 2008 GOP presidential candidate Ron Paul, Rand has been an outspoken opponent of big federal government, big federal spending, the federal Department of Education, the Fed and members of Congress who get too fond of their power and stay on too long.

And, btw, Paul was not the only Tea Party supporter to win in Kentucky Tuesday. Todd Lally, a pilot, also won the Republican nomination to run in the state's 3rd congressional district.

At the moment of victory, Paul explained his conservative supporters' motivation to....

...the Fox Business Network:

They are worried about those who keep spending the money and seem to have no restraint. I think it’s an anti-big-government message going on. I’m not going to run away from the tea party message.

Paul, an eye doctor, defeated the better-known secretary of State Trey Grayson, the handpicked favorite of Kentucky's senior senator, Mitch McConnell, Senate minority leader for the GOP. Another likely indication of the anti-incumbent fervor that seems to be spreading.

Paul was critical of McConnell in recent months but said Tuesday he plans a unity rally Saturday to bring the state's Republican Party together to hold the seat.

(UPDATE: 6:24 p.m.: McConnell's office said this evening he will definitely attend the Saturday rally and issued this statement from him: 

 Dr. Paul ran an outstanding campaign which clearly struck a chord with Kentucky voters and I congratulate him on his impressive victory.

Now Kentucky Republicans will unite in standing against the overreaching policies of the Obama Administration. We are spiraling further into unsustainable debt and Kentucky needs Rand Paul in the U.S. Senate because he will work every day to stop this crippling agenda.

On limiting himself to two terms, Paul told Fox:

I haven’t taken a voluntary pledge. I don’t conceive of myself staying longer than twelve years. I am young enough that I’d like to go back and practice medicine.

If I were fortunate enough to go up there for 12 years, I think that’s enough. We need someone who will go up in six to 12 years, who will go up and shake up the system and change the system.

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While America votes, Obama tries to talk economy to troubled Ohio

Obama's not on any ballot today, but he's on many minds

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Photo: Rand Paul Credit: Ed Reinke / Associated Press

Comments () | Archives (7)

The comments to this entry are closed.

Ran Paul is a son of Ron Paul? What is his grandfather's name--RuePaul?

He broke a million in the 3rd quarter. I know he's down to Trey Grayson, but what would you put the odds at of Dr. Paul winning the nomination?

Sarah Palin & Jim Bunning have endorsed Rand Paul for kentucky US Senate seat that being vacated by Jim Bunning. But the neoconservative leadership in the republican party are spending hundreds of thousands trying to get the ex-democrat Trey Grayson elected.

Does Rand Paul have a chance against the GOP establishment. Or will the Tea Party movement, along with Sarah Palin, help Rand Paul fill the seat?

YES!...I have been trying to tell people about Rand Paul for weeks...We will be voting for him in 2010 (watch and see, we will make him a senator)...And we will encourage him to run for President in 2012

He broke a million in the 3rd quarter. I know he's down to Trey Grayson, but what would you put the odds at of Dr. Paul winning the nomination?

(AM responds: He's already won the nomination.)

I went through the wealthy neighborhoods today and I seen a lot of political banners in the yards yet I didn't see anything in the poor neighborhoods of Lexington, Kentucky. What makes this man think he can win without the votes of the poor? Rand Paul doesn't want to help poor people obviously because I didn't see a banner in a poor person's front yard at all. It was all in the wealthy people's front yards. Yes, I went all over Lexington, Kentucky on purpose just to see what his intentions were and it's obvious now.

tea party is the best but why he is discussing.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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