Here's what Sen. Rand Paul is looking for in a successful president: You have to be able to, when confronted with an inebriated, passed-out relative, pick him up, and haul him home.
That's what he implied, anyway, at least judging by the story he told in his speech tonight about 11-year-old Ronald Reagan who came across his drunken, passed-out dad and dragged him into the house from the porch. Reagan, Paul pointed out, went on to pull the country out of the malaise of the '70s.
Read this excerpt for yourself; see what you think.
Author Paul Kengor writes of a brisk evening in small-town Illinois. Returning home from a basketball game at the YMCA, an 11-year-old boy is stunned by the sight of his father sprawled out in the snow on the front porch. "He was drunk," his son later remembered. "Dead to the world...crucified." The dad's hair was soaked with melted snow, matted unevenly against the side of his reddened face.
The boy stood over his father for a minute or two. He simply wanted to let himself in the door and pretend his dad wasn't there. Instead, he grabbed a fistful of overcoat and heaved his dad to the bedroom, away from the weather's harm and neighbors' attention.
This young boy became the man - Ronald Reagan - whose sunny optimism and charisma shined so brightly that it cured the malaise of the late seventies, a confidence that beamed so broadly that it pulled us through a serious recession, and a faith that tugged so happily at all hearts that a generation of Democrats became Republicans.