November 9th, 2010
07:01 PM ET
8 years ago

Paul pushes back on earmarks

Washington (CNN) – Newly-minted Kentucky Republican Senator-elect Rand Paul is fighting a Wall Street Journal article that he says misquoted him as supporting the use of earmarks.

"I never, ever said I would earmark and I will not use the earmark," Paul said in an interview with CNN lead political anchor Wolf Blitzer on the Situation Room. "No matter what the Republican Caucus says or what anybody does, I will not put earmarks on bill."

Paul, who was an outspoken opponent of the use of earmarks in Congress throughout his Senate campaign, said, "It's amazing how one little misquote can make a big difference. But no, we've called him (the reporter) and asked him to correct that. "

He explained the comments, saying "I did tell him what I told you, I will advocate for things that Kentucky needs through the committee process, where we deliberate on what are the most important projects, and also in the context of a balanced budget. Those are two important provisos, but that's not earmarking and I won't do earmarking."

Paul admitted that his firm stance on earmarks is one that does not appeal to all Republicans, including his father, Texas Republican Rep. Ron Paul.

"There are good people who disagree with me on this issue," Paul said, "Even my dad and I have disagreements on this issue."

During the interview, Paul also called for lowering the deficit, another major component of his campaign platform leading up to the 2010 elections.

"I will be part of introducing a balanced budget," Paul said, "And I will be part of introducing bills that have significant spending cuts so we can get our fiscal house in order."

But, as several Republicans have done in the week since Election Day, Paul denounced the idea that he would advocate for shutting down the government if parties cannot come to an agreement on the budget.

"I'm not going to Washington with this plan to shut down government or to say we will no longer have the debt," Paul said. "We still have to do - we have to make payments on our debt and we have to honor our obligations, but we should not be adding to the debt."

Filed under: 2010 • earmarks • Rand Paul • The Situation Room
soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. Tony

    Earmarks have always been a way for elected officials to get home district or home state projects going that would otherwise never get done, and most of the projects funded by earmarks are a valid use of taxpayer dollars.

    But valid or not, the good folks of Kentucky that elected this brainless bigot will have buyer remorse in short order. It won't take long for them to miss the Federal largesse that this idiot is determined to end for Kentucky.

    Oh well, West Virginia is right next door and they have never had a problem taking earmarks, send the money to WV!

    November 9, 2010 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  2. R. Fraer

    I can see Rand Paul was not raised in Pittsburgh like his father and had to wash milk bottles for the family dairy, What a waste of a good education

    November 9, 2010 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  3. John

    Ha...a Washington insider already. Go'in back on promises. Kentucky...see what you did!!!

    November 9, 2010 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  4. stufthis

    He won't need to, as Mitch is the king of Kentucky earmarks.

    November 9, 2010 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  5. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Paul wants to cut medicare and social security for all of Kentucky because he won't be able to do it for the other states.

    November 9, 2010 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  6. Davey

    This guy is awful. He's rude, nasty, combative and dos not like to give specifics or answer questions directly. You really did it this time Kentucky. You elected a man with NO solutions.

    November 9, 2010 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  7. 8 Years of "Trickle Down" economics has only left a dribbling wet spot on working Americans's shoes!

    We are not as concerned about shutting down the U.S. government over balancing the budget, as we are about you shutting down the global financial markets with your statements in your victory speech that you will not vote to increase the credit ceiling. If you refuse, and shut down he Senate with your filibuster, we will default on international debts around March and 2008 will be considered the "good ol' days".

    November 9, 2010 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  8. George of the jungle

    another looney on the loose. You voted for him

    November 9, 2010 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  9. tottypot

    I watched this man being interviewed by Spitzer on CNN. God help us if this is the type of elector we now have in office in our country. He is rude, arrogant, without any type of manners. What is wrong with the people of Kentucky when they will elect someone of this calliber?

    November 9, 2010 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |