BERKELEY, Calif. ““ Rand Paul’s swing through Berkeley is just the beginning of his foray into traditionally Democratic territory.
After his visit to this liberal stronghold, where he’s speaking to students about the NSA and privacy, the Kentucky senator will make stops at the National Urban League in July and at the NAACP in the coming months, if an informal invitation from the group is made official. He’s also plotting a trip to Chicago and Milwaukee, Paul said in an interview this week, where he plans to speak about education and “school choice.”
It’s all part of his effort to cast himself as the man who can broaden the appeal of the Republican Party ahead of a widely expected 2016 presidential run. Among the demographic groups that Paul is most furiously targeting are young voters and African-Americans.
“For the Republican Party to win again we need to go places we haven’t been going, and we need to attract people we haven’t been attracting. Part of that is the message, but part of that is also showing up,” Paul told National Journal. “I think we need to show up in challenging circumstances, so you don’t think of Berkeley as being a bastion of Republican politics and so I think it’s a good place to go.”
Paul, a fierce critic of the National Security Agency’s tactics, believes the issue of surveillance can — and has already started to — peel young voters away from President Obama and the Democratic Party.
“The youth vote went 3-to-1 for President Obama but recent polls, in the last six months, have shown his support dropping because, mostly because of the NSA scandal, I think,” Paul said.
Paul said he also wants to make a push into big cities where Republicans have been swamped in recent elections. “We have a trip planned to Chicago and Milwaukee to talk about school choice and to talk about education in the large cities and how we can do a better job than what we’re doing,” he said.
The senator has made a concerted effort to broaden his appeal to black voters, appearing at Howard University last year and another historically black college earlier this year.
He said he planned to speak to the National Urban League in July and that he would like to speak with the NAACP, whose president invited him via the media last month, as well. “I don’t know if we actually have an invitation but we’ll do that if we’re invited,” Paul said.
Paul’s political maneuverings are garnering increased attention as he has risen in the national polling for 2016. His appearance in Berkeley is expected to draw a full house and a bevy of both local and national reporters.
“If we’re just trying to get the message out about how we grow the Republican Party, I have a bigger microphone because people are seeing me as a contender,” he said.
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Before we get to the specifics of this exposé about escorts working the Iowa and New Hampshire primary crowds, let’s get three things out of the way: 1.) It’s from Cosmopolitan; 2.) most of the women quoted use fake (if colorful) names; and 3.) again, it’s from Cosmopolitan. That said, here’s what we learned:
- Business was booming: one escort who says she typically gets two inquiries a weekend got 15 requests in the pre-primary weekend.
- Their primary season clientele is a bit older than normal—”40s through mid-60s, compared with mostly twentysomething regulars” and “they’ve clearly done this before.”
- They seemed more nervous than other clients, because “the stakes are higher when you’re working for a possible future president” but “all practiced impeccable manners.”
- One escort “typically enjoy[s] the company of Democrats more, just because I feel like our views line up a lot more.”
No matter where you stand on mandating companies to include a backdoor in encryption technologies, it doesn’t make sense to allow that decision to be made on a state level. “The problem with state-level legislation of this nature is that it manages to be both wildly impractical and entirely unenforceable,” writes Brian Barrett at Wired. There is a solution to this problem. “California Congressman Ted Lieu has introduced the ‘Ensuring National Constitutional Rights for Your Private Telecommunications Act of 2016,’ which we’ll call ENCRYPT. It’s a short, straightforward bill with a simple aim: to preempt states from attempting to implement their own anti-encryption policies at a state level.”
Much has been made of David Brooks’s recent New York Times column, in which confesses to missing already the civility and humanity of Barack Obama, compared to who might take his place. In NewYorker.com, Jeffrey Frank reminds us how critical such attributes are to foreign policy. “It’s hard to imagine Kennedy so casually referring to the leader of Russia as a gangster or a thug. For that matter, it’s hard to imagine any president comparing the Russian leader to Hitler [as] Hillary Clinton did at a private fund-raiser. … Kennedy, who always worried that miscalculation could lead to war, paid close attention to the language of diplomacy.”
The New Covenant. The Third Way. The Democratic Leadership Council style. Call it what you will, but whatever centrist triangulation Bill Clinton embraced in 1992, Hillary Clinton wants no part of it in 2016. Writing for Bloomberg, Sasha Issenberg and Margaret Talev explore how Hillary’s campaign has “diverged pointedly” from what made Bill so successful: “For Hillary to survive, Clintonism had to die.” Bill’s positions in 1992—from capital punishment to free trade—“represented a carefully calibrated diversion from the liberal orthodoxy of the previous decade.” But in New Hampshire, Hillary “worked to juggle nostalgia for past Clinton primary campaigns in the state with the fact that the Bill of 1992 or the Hillary of 2008 would likely be a marginal figure within today’s Democratic politics.”
At first, “it was pleasant” to see Trevor Noah “smiling away and deeply dimpling in the Stewart seat, the seat that had lately grown gray hairs,” writes The Atlantic‘s James Parker in assessing the new host of the once-indispensable Daily Show. But where Jon Stewart was a heavyweight, Noah is “a very able lightweight, [who] needs time too. But he won’t get any. As a culture, we’re not about to nurture this talent, to give it room to grow. Our patience was exhausted long ago, by some other guy. We’re going to pass judgment and move on. There’s a reason Simon Cowell is so rich. Impress us today or get thee hence. So it comes to this: It’s now or never, Trevor.”