“Live Free or Die!” Will Ted Cruz Inherit the Rand (and Ron) Paul Voters?

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) (photo credit: Gage Skidmore)

Time Magazine reports on Ted Cruz’s embrace of the Paul “liberty voters” in New Hampshire. Subhead: “The Iowa Republican winner appeals by trumpeting the gold standard, privacy rights and limits on eminent domain.”

Time‘s Alex Altman reports from Salem, NH:

In the hours after Sen. Rand Paul dropped out of the presidential race Wednesday, the libertarian state representative and passionate Paul supporter [Eric Eastman] says he fielded a personal phone call from Jeb Bush and an offer from Donald Trump’s campaign promising VIP treatment. Even an aide to Chris Christie reached out. But as he processed his grief over Paul’s exit, Eastman already had a new candidate in mind.

On the night of Paul’s exit, Eastman went to see Ted Cruz in Nashua, N.H. …. By Friday night, Eastman was onstage at a jam-packed Cruz town hall … offering his endorsement and telling the crowd that the Tea Party Texan and the Kentucky libertarian were “close cousins” philosophically. “Chapter and verse, the two guys are aligned in many ways,” Eastman explained in an interview.

This has been Cruz’s argument from the beginning, and it could come in handy next Tuesday in New Hampshire, where libertarian Ron Paul got 23% of the Republican primary vote in 2012.

[…]

On cornerstone libertarian issues—privacy, civil liberties, gun rights and others—the two freshman senators are largely in step. It’s why big libertarian donors like Peter Thiel, the Silicon Valley billionaire, have written big checks to Cruz four years after funneling more than $2.5 million to Ron Paul.

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Another Candidate Drops Out: Rand Paul

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) (photo credit: Gage Skidmore)

Politico is reporting that Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is dropping out of the presidential race:

Rand Paul on Wednesday dropped out of the race for president, and said he will now focus on his reelection to the U.S. Senate.

“It’s been an incredible honor to run a principled campaign for the White House. Today, I will end where I began, ready and willing to fight for the cause of Liberty,” Paul said in a statement.

Paul seemingly backs that up with an ambiguous “Thank You” video on his Twitter, which you can watch below:

While Paul never gained traction in the polls, he did provide one of the GOP primary’s best moments back in April 2015, when he aggressively attacked the Democrats on abortion:

Here’s the deal — we always seem to have the debate waaaaay over here on what are the exact details of exemptions, or when it starts. Why don’t we ask the DNC: Is it okay to kill a seven-pound baby in the uterus? You go back and you ask Debbie Wasserman-Schultz if she’s OK with killing a seven-pound baby that is not born yet. Ask her when life begins, and you ask Debbie when it’s okay to protect life. When you get an answer from Debbie, get back to me.

Let’s hope Senator Paul can now concentrate on winning his Senate race in Kentucky and continue to be a powerful voice within the Republican Party. Continue Reading

Iowa Caucus 2016: Winners and Losers

From left: Donald Trump and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX)

Wow, what an incredible night! Now that the votes have been tallied in Iowa, it’s time to take a look at tonight’s winners and losers.

Winner: Ted Cruz

This one ought to be obvious. Despite running slightly behind Donald Trump in most polls heading into Caucus night, Ted Cruz delivered a decisive victory, likely due to a strong ground game advantage (which Terry drew attention to earlier today). Although Cruz is unlikely to win in New Hampshire, a state whose demographics favor a more moderate candidate, Cruz’s Iowa win should give him much needed momentum headed into the South Carolina and SEC primaries.

Loser: Donald Trump

Sure, no one expected Trump to dominate Iowa. But given his slight polling advantage leading into tonight, most election-watchers expected Trump to at least keep the race close with Cruz. As the Caucus played out, however, Trump never really came close, despite a record turnout which many suspected would have bolstered his chances, given the significant support he was drawing from first-time caucus-goers. Nevertheless, when voting time came, Trump did not live up to the hype. That does not bode well for him moving forward.

Winner: Marco Rubio

We speculated today that Marco Rubio might be headed for a better than expected finish in Iowa due to a late surge. However, only the most optimistic of Rubio-backers could have predicted the Florida senator performing as well as he did tonight. Rubio outperformed his RCP polling average in Iowa by a whopping six points, moving him to within one point of Trump in the final vote tally. Continue Reading

Here’s How Iowa Will Play Out…

Wow. It’s already here. The Iowa Caucus is tomorrow.

Here’s a candidate-by-candidate review of what could happen, what should happen, and what will happen after the votes are tallied:

Donald Trump

  • Best-case scenario: A strong 1st place finish (35 percent+)
  • Worst-case scenario: Losing to Ted Cruz and finishing second.

Trump currently leads the polls in Iowa, but will polls translate to the ballot box? We honestly have no clue, but we should certainly have a better idea after Tuesday.

Regardless of what happens in Iowa, Trump is here to stay. Losing Iowa will not end his candidacy — not when he’s leading literally everywhere else.

  • PREDICTION: Donald Trump wins Iowa by a slim margin over Ted Cruz.

Ted Cruz

  • Best-case scenario: A strong 1st place finish (35 percent+)
  • Worst-case scenario: Losing to Donald Trump and finishing second.

Ted Cruz is in a very different position than Donald Trump. While Trump would like to win Iowa, it’s not as crucial for him — even if Cruz wins Iowa, Trump will still be seen as the de facto front runner. But Cruz needs Iowa to help him breakout as a viable candidate. If he fails to win Iowa, it’s hard to see his path to victory — could he win New Hampshire? South Carolina? Seems unlikely.

  • PREDICTION: Cruz finishes a close second, spins it as a victory, and stays in the race.

Marco Rubio

  • Best-case scenario: A strong 3rd place finish (20 percent+)
  • Worst-case scenario: Finishing 4th or worse, especially behind Christie or Bush.
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Rand Paul Attacks Ted Cruz in Unusual New Video

The Rand Paul Campaign continued to hammer Sen. Ted Cruz for his absence on the Audit the Fed vote, this time in the form of a strange web video.

The video, titled “Audit the Ted” involves a dialogue between two cartoon characters about Paul’s commitment to auditing the Federal Reserve in an attempt to distinguish himself from Cruz:

“Did you hear about audit the Fed?” the male character says in a robotic voice.

“Yes, Rand Paul is trying to stop the out of control Fed,” the female character replied in an equally robotic voice.

“Do others support audit the Fed too?” the first character asks.

“The Ted Cruz said so but did not show up to vote,” replied the female character.

The characters in the cartoon went on to say that Cruz missed the vote because he was too busy campaigning. The Paul Campaign followed up the video with an email appeal to voters, touting his record and directly bashing Cruz.

Stephen Brown works for the American Principles Project. Continue Reading

Ron Paul Questions Cruz’s Absence on Audit the Fed Vote

Former Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) (photo credit: Gage Skidmore)

The Senate failed to pass a measure Tuesday that would have provided for the consideration of legislation to audit the Federal Reserve. Falling seven votes short of the necessary 60, Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-KY) legislation would have mandated an audit and greater transparency in monetary policy-making from the Federal Reserve.

The measure had near-unanimous Republican support, with Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) casting the only GOP ‘nay’ vote. Prior to the vote, Sen. Paul called on Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders (I-VT) to vote in favor of the legislation in an attempt to put their money where their mouths are regarding their alleged commitment to the middle class. Perhaps the most notable dynamic of the vote, however, was the absence of Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz (R-TX).

Cruz, who just last month went on the offensive against Florida Senator and presidential candidate Marco Rubio’s absentee voting record, was not present for Tuesday’s vote, despite being vocal about auditing the Federal Reserve. His absence has drawn the ire of prominent libertarian voters and even former Congressman and presidential candidate Ron Paul.

In the first time he has gone on the offensive for his son’s presidential campaign, Ron Paul explained the historical significance of Rand’s “Audit the Fed” Bill and wasted no time in noting Cruz’s absence:

My son Rand Paul forced the issue and brought it to the floor. Unfortunately, it failed by just a few votes and Senator Ted Cruz skipped the vote to campaign.

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Newsweek Calls the Fed a “Marquee Issue” in the Presidential Race

Photo credit: Kurtis Garbutt via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Newsweek offers this startling headline: “Paul, Sanders Join Forces Against Federal Reserve.

Given Sanders’s surge in the polls as a serious rival to Hillary Clinton, it is very notable that the presidential campaigns’ criticism of the Fed now has turned bipartisan. Newsweek:

Senators Bernie Sanders and Rand Paul are on opposing sides in the presidential race, but the two candidates lined up together Tuesday on a bill to open the Federal Reserve to more scrutiny.

The controversial proposal to “audit the Fed,” as the Paul bill was called, didn’t get the votes to move forward in the Senate. But it showcased a marquee issue that both candidates are emphasizing as they pitch themselves to primary voters.

Newsweek‘s Emily Cadai really nails this issue more perceptively than have any other reporters on the presidential campaign beat:

Sanders’s beef with the Fed has more to do with how its “loose money” policies have benefitted the wealthy, part of a larger critique of rising inequality in the country. The Vermont Independent made a name for himself in the House in the 1990s with his aggressive critique of longtime Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan. Their verbal sparring matches at hearings over the years is something the Sanders campaign now points to with pride as evidence of his commitment to the issue.

[…]

Senator Paul claimed the mantle for auditing the Fed when his dad retired from the House in 2012. And he’s garnered support from a growing number of Republicans, including fellow 2016 candidates Senators Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, who both co-sponsored the bill.

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Sanders Joins Rand Paul in Voting Yes on Audit the Fed

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) (photo credit: Michael Vadon via Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0)

In a sign of how potentially potent the issue of the Federal Reserve and monetary policy still is, the insurgent leader of the Democrats in Iowa and New Hampshire, Bernie Sanders, joined with Rand Paul and most Republicans to vote yes on Paul’s Audit the Fed bill, which was nevertheless scuttled by a majority of Democrats:

Senate Democrats blocked a vote Tuesday on legislation from Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., that would have required an audit and greater transparency on monetary policy-making from the Federal Reserve, the powerful central banking system that sets interest rates and manages the money supply.

The bill won near-unanimous Republican support and votes from Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., and Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders, who is seeking the Democratic presidential nomination, but fell short of the 60 votes needed for consideration.

In a statement, Sanders explained why he parted ways with most Democrats in voting for the bill:

Too much of the Fed’s business is conducted in secret, known only to the bankers on its various boards and committees. In 2010, I inserted an amendment in Dodd-Frank to audit the emergency lending by the Federal Reserve during the financial crisis. As a result of this audit, we learned that an institution that was created to serve all Americans had been hijacked by the very bankers it regulates.

We must expand on that first review of the Fed’s activities. Requiring the Government Accountability Office to conduct a full and independent audit of the Fed each and every year, would be an important step towards making the Federal Reserve a more democratic institution that is responsive to the needs of ordinary Americans rather than the billionaires on Wall Street.

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Sen. Paul’s Audit the Fed Bill Will Be Voted on Today. Paul’s Indictment of the Fed in Time Is Strong

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) (photo credit: Gage Skidmore)

Now in Time Magazine, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul yesterday boldly states, in an op-ed, that “The Fed Is Crippling America.” Sen. Paul writes:

On Jan. 12, Congress is scheduled to vote on the “Audit the Fed” legislation (H.R. 24/S. 264), which, if passed, would bring to an end to the Federal Reserve’s unchecked—and even arguably unconstitutional—power in the financial markets and the economy.

According to Ron Paul’s Citizens For Liberty, which is putting a full court press on for Senate passage of Audit the Fed, prospects for passage are uncertain. Sen. Paul’s indictment of the Fed is very certain. Sen. Paul:

The Fed was intended to be an apolitical body, a concession to placate the naysayers. But today, the Fed isn’t even shy about entering the political fray: witness Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s income inequality speech riddled with Democratic talking points during the 2014 elections.

The Fed is, indeed, a political, oligarchic force, and a key part of what looks and functions like a banking cartel. During the 2007-08 financial crisis, the Fed’s true nature was clear to anyone paying attention. As the Treasury began bailing out the investment banks from the consequences of their profligate risk-taking (and in some cases fraudulent schemes), the Fed moved in tandem, further purchasing the underwater assets of these institutions, as well as actually paying interest to the commercial banks (hemorrhaging from risky loans) for reserves they kept parked at the Fed.

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Our Top 10 Posts of 2015

We had a great year at ThePulse2016.com. Thank you for being a consistent reader.

Here were our top 10 most popular posts (ranked in order by unique page views) on ThePulse2016.com this year:

10.) “Rand Paul Just Destroyed the Democrats On Abortion

Sen. Rand Paul (photo credit: Gage Skidmore)

April 8, 2015 By: Jon Schweppe

Wow. Senator Rand Paul just gave the best answer on abortion I’ve ever seen—a complete home run.

Pro-abortionists love to force pro-life candidates to be very specific on abortion, and the media is often their willing accomplice. The media will happily force pro-life candidates to explain which exceptions they support, which they don’t, and generally just flummox them into eventually giving up on defending their position altogether outside of a vague declaration of being pro-life. After all, when you’re explaining, you’re losing.

This has been a frustrating trend to watch. Republicans have generally avoided the issue altogether, while Democrats continue to radicalize and become bolder in their pro-abortion ideology.

Abortion isn’t an issue on which conservatives need to be playing defense. Instead, we should be going on the attack and forcing liberals defend their radical views of supporting abortion without exception from the moment of conception to the moment of birth.

Enter Rand Paul.

[…]

Read more here.

9.) “Whoopi Goldberg Attacks Carly Fiorina: See Whoopi Fail!

Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina (photo credit: Peter Stevens via Flickr, CC BY 2.0)

June 17, 2015 By: Josh Pinho

Carly Fiorina recently appeared as a guest panelist on ABC’s “The View,” and was asked by co-host Whoopi Goldberg to respond to a loaded question on the topic of life.

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