Monday, March 11, 2013

One speech, two results

It appears that Rand Paul's filibuster last week may have been a clarifying moment.  As the loyal opposition, Republicans have to get their act together re post-9/11 defense policy.  Ross Douthat ("What Hath Rand Paul Wrought?") thinks that Paul gave his colleagues a way to move in that direction.
... the lesson of Paul’s ascent is that being a policy entrepreneur carries rewards as well as risks — and that if you know how to speak the language of the party’s base, it’s possible to be a different kind of Republican without forfeiting your conservative bona fides.
Jennifer Rubin has the same idea, writing in today's Washington Post:
The reaction of some hawks on the right to Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul’s filibuster suggests a refusal to recognize why Paul was so successful in garnering praise. They are seemingly unable to recognize the deeply held perception of many, if not most, of the American people that Iraq and Afghanistan were unsuccessful and that enthusiasm for the Arab Spring is misplaced. They have lost credibility with the American people and they need to both acknowledge that and strive to get it back.
And Anthony Gregory reminds us that Paul got the administration to back down and clarify policy on drone use.

It is not often that one Senate speech is as far reaching.