Dead for now: Kentucky bill allowing twin Paul 2016 runs
April 17th, 2014
03:13 PM ET
8 months ago

Dead for now: Kentucky bill allowing twin Paul 2016 runs

(CNN) - A bill allowing Kentucky GOP Sen. Rand Paul to simultaneously run for the presidency and re-election to his U.S. Senate seat in 2016 died earlier this week when the Kentucky legislature adjourned for the year.

The bill had passed the Republican-controlled state Senate, but stalled in the Democratic-controlled state House of Representatives.

"In Kentucky, you ought to run for one office at a time," Brian Wilkerson, a spokesman for Kentucky House Speaker Greg Stumbo, told CNN on Thursday. "The speaker's thoughts haven't changed on that."

The state's Democratic governor, Steve Beshear, is highly unlikely to call the legislature into special session to consider the measure. And that means if Paul's allies in the state legislature want to try again, they're going to have to wait until the legislature reconvenes next January.

By that time, a number of 2016 White House contenders may already be officially in the race.

GOP State Senate Majority Leader Damon Thayer, a supporter of Paul's, has argued that Kentucky's law prohibiting running for two offices at the same time is meant to apply only to state-level offices – not federal offices such as the presidency, the U.S. Senate or the U.S. House.

"Senator Paul is very popular here, and I personally don't want to deny Kentuckians the chance to vote for or against one of their own for the Senate if he's also nominated for the presidency," Thayer told CNN in March.

A number of other states let politicians run for the House or Senate while also running for the White House, Thayer noted.

"It's not fair to Senator Paul if he can't do the same," he said. "Why should Kentucky be any different when it comes to one of their own running for president?"

But Florida GOP Sen. Marco Rubio - another potential 2016 presidential contender - argued earlier this month that candidates shouldn't run for the presidency while trying to hold onto another office.

"I think by and large, when you choose to do something as big as that, you've really got to be focused on that and not have an exit strategy," Rubio said during an April 2 appearance on the Hugh Hewitt radio show.

As with Kentucky, Florida law prohibits candidates from being on the ballot for two different offices. Rubio described that rule as "the right law."

Paul, a tea party favorite, is currently considered a likely contender for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination. If that bid doesn't pan out, a Senate re-election victory would allow him to maintain his foothold on Capitol Hill for another six years, starting in January 2017.

Several members of recent presidential tickets have essentially hedged their political bets by running for re-election while simultaneously pursuing higher office.

Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan ran for re-election to his seat in 2012 while serving as the GOP vice presidential nominee on Mitt Romney's ticket. Then-Sen. Joe Biden also ran for re-election in Delaware while simultaneously serving as then-Sen. Barack Obama's running mate in 2008.

In 2000, Joe Lieberman was re-elected to his Senate seat in Connecticut while losing his bid for the vice presidency when he and Vice President Al Gore, the Democratic presidential nominee, narrowly lost the election to George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.

–CNN's Steve Brusk contributed to this story


Filed under: 2016 • Rand Paul
soundoff (21 Responses)
  1. just asking

    The bill had passed the Republican-controlled state Senate, but stalled in the Democratic-controlled state House of Representatives.
    --–

    wherever democrats control government, bills die. just like in the democrat controlled senate in washington. then they blame others for nothing happening. but if there was money to be spent or taxes to be raised, you can be sure they'd be there working overtime.

    April 17, 2014 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  2. emskadittle

    well i guess paul really isn't serious about his chances in 2016

    April 17, 2014 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  3. Malory Archer

    just asking

    The bill had passed the Republican-controlled state Senate, but stalled in the Democratic-controlled state House of Representatives.
    ––

    wherever democrats control government, bills die. just like in the democrat controlled senate in washington. then they blame others for nothing happening. but if there was money to be spent or taxes to be raised, you can be sure they'd be there working overtime.

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Why are you complaining? It works out in aqua buddah's favor that the bill died. Perhaps if you would learn to get that jerky knee of your's under control you won't embarrass yourself next time you see a story that mentions Democrats.

    April 17, 2014 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  4. ThinkAgain: Don't like Congress? Get rid of the repub/tea bag majority.

    "Senator Paul is very popular here, and I personally don't want to deny Kentuckians the chance to vote for or against one of their own for the Senate if he's also nominated for the presidency,"

    Rant is DOA when it comes to becoming the president; this is just a fundraising ploy.

    April 17, 2014 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  5. ThinkAgain: Don't like Congress? Get rid of the repub/tea bag majority.

    What happened to States' rights? Why should a special interest group change Kentucky law so they can hedge their bets?

    Rant needs to take a principled stand and either run for POTUS or Senator (and I'm hoping either way, he gets taken to the cleaners).

    April 17, 2014 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  6. Silence DoGood

    @just asking
    "wherever democrats control government, bills die. "
    ----------
    Never heard of the GOP congress people in DC? It is where the whole country is governed from. It is like a really important place dude. Acting stupid is not really and argument.

    April 17, 2014 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  7. ThinkAgain: Don't like Congress? Get rid of the repub/tea bag majority.

    @just asking: "wherever democrats control government, bills die. just like in the democrat controlled senate in washington. then they blame others for nothing happening. but if there was money to be spent or taxes to be raised, you can be sure they'd be there working overtime."

    repubs are the ones in the Senate who filibuster everything – regardless of whether a bill would benefit or nation or reflects the will of the people. You're a piece of .... work .... to think the problem in Washington is the Dems fault. A majority of Americans elected President Obama TWICE, and in 2012, retained a Democratic majority in the Senate and cast 1.4 million MORE votes for Democratic House candidates than repub/tea bags. You folks are nothing but a bunch of whiny babies.

    April 17, 2014 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  8. Thomas

    @ just asking & Donna

    GREEN EGGS AND HAM 2016
    Paul / Cruz
    Aquabuddha and FreedomWorks
    more then a breath mint

    April 17, 2014 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  9. MaryM

    lol, like Rand Paul has ANY chance of being POTUS.

    April 17, 2014 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  10. texasnotea

    Nobody should be able to run for two offices at the same time but republicans are to stupid to understand that

    April 17, 2014 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  11. devil's advocate

    Another example of a small mind, just saying, if a Democrat wanted to do this, you would adamantly attack his integrity, which is odd, considering you have none, just one example of why you are considered very immature. Just one of many daily examples of your inabilities to judge on an even keel, and you think the liberals are the idiots.

    April 17, 2014 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  12. Dead Bear

    I'll give a Republican response to his predicament... If he doesn't like how things are done in Kentucky, he can move to another state.

    April 17, 2014 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  13. Vence

    Two for one. Sounds like a good discount!

    April 17, 2014 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  14. ThinkAgain: Don't like Congress? Get rid of the repub/tea bag majority

    Read "Twin Paul" and thought, OMG, there's ANOTHER ONE?!?

    April 17, 2014 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  15. S.B. Stein

    I can't take Paul seriously because he doesn't seem to understand that the real world doesn't go along with his unrealistic ideals. Not everyone tells the truth or plays fair as he seems to believe. If they did, then there is a better shot for the world; clearly that is not going on here and now.

    April 17, 2014 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  16. O'drama ya Mama

    just asking

    The bill had passed the Republican-controlled state Senate, but stalled in the Democratic-controlled state House of Representatives.
    ––

    wherever democrats control government, bills die. just like in the democrat controlled senate in washington. then they blame others for nothing happening. but if there was money to be spent or taxes to be raised, you can be sure they'd be there working overtime.
    _________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Well the Speaker of the House John Boehner seems to think killing bills is better then passing them. Regardless, the House of Reps has better things to do then to change the rules for Rand. He seems to love changing the rules for himself. The American Board of Ophthalmology would not certify him so he just created his own and certified himself. This is the kind of man you want as President?

    April 17, 2014 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  17. devil's advocate

    The Republicans will rid us of those pesky, intrusive laws that keep them from doing whatever they want.

    April 17, 2014 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  18. John

    Malory Archer.... did you actually read and understand the article?

    April 17, 2014 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  19. rs

    just asking

    The bill had passed the Republican-controlled state Senate, but stalled in the Democratic-controlled state House of Representatives.
    ––

    wherever democrats control government, bills die. just like in the democrat controlled senate in washington. then they blame others for nothing happening. but if there was money to be spent or taxes to be raised, you can be sure they'd be there working overtime.
    _______________________
    You really are plowing fresh ground in delusionalism aren't you? The least productive Congress-ever- run by Republicans, and the Senate under constant Filibuster threat from Mr. McConnell.
    Tell the truth for a change.

    April 17, 2014 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  20. ja

    He is wrong, wrong, no iintergity

    April 17, 2014 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  21. rs

    What happened to States' rights?
    _________________________
    There was an ugly event in the first part of the 1860s that sort of settled states' rights vs. the federal government.

    April 17, 2014 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |