May 20th, 2010
06:22 PM ET
12 years ago

Paul: 'News cycle has gotten out of control'

(CNN) – Kentucky Senate candidate Rand Paul, facing withering criticism for questioning elements of the Civil Rights Act, lamented the state of the media Thursday when asked about the tempest swirling around his remarks.

"I thought I was supposed to get a honeymoon," Paul sighed in an interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer. "When does my honeymoon start after my victory?"

In an appearance on MSNBC's "The Rachel Maddow Show" Wednesday night, Paul debated whether the landmark federal anti-discrimination legislation should apply to private businesses – unleashing a torrent of attacks from national Democrats eager to undercut his candidacy two days after he secured the GOP nomination.

Paul said in the CNN interview Thursday that MSNBC, taking cues from his Democratic opponent Jack Conway, had mistakenly reported that he supports a "repeal" of the Civil Rights Act.

"I think what troubles me is that the news cycle has gotten out of control," he told Blitzer. "For several hours on a major news network yesterday, they reported repeatedly that I was for repealing the Civil Rights Act. That is not only not true, never been my position, but is an out and out lie. And they repeated it all day long."

Nevertheless, Paul sought to walk back his explosive comments.

He said he would have voted in favor of the Civil Rights Act if he were in the Senate at the time, calling the racial climate at the time "a stain on the South and our history."

"There was an overriding problem in the South that was so big that it did require federal intervention in the Sixties," he said. "The Southern states weren't correcting it, and there was a need for federal intervention."

Paul, though, would not say if he would have voted for the Americans with Disabilities Act. He wondered if a private businesses should be "forced to put in a $100,000 elevator" for a disabled employee, for example.

"I think sometimes when we have a federal solution, we have a one-size-fit-all, and that we recognize the problem, which I do also, of someone who is handicapped," he said. "But then we don't take into consideration at all the business owner or the property owner. So I think it's a balancing act."

Filed under: 2010 • Kentucky • Popular Posts • Rand Paul • The Situation Room
soundoff (64 Responses)
  1. welches, oregon

    I just never understood – maybe someone can elighten me.

    What difference does a person's skin color make? I mean....what?

    May 20, 2010 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  2. floydfix69

    if goverment is so big why are people crying about BP and natural disasters we need money. who helps u the goverment. so untie or fall. i hope one day one all u crazy people wake up but by then it with be too late. dont blame nobody but yourself.

    May 20, 2010 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  3. Donnatella

    To late Rand, we all got your number you are a straight up racist, I'm white and If I lived in Kentucky I would not vote for you, you are a loose cannon, who knows what else he might be hiding.

    May 20, 2010 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  4. Rob

    I had heard he was neo-conish, but the more I hear of him the more I like him, and the more he sounds like his dad. I completely agree with what he's saying today, federal intervention was certainly warranted in the Civil Rights movement but I also understand why he'd want to debate the intervention of government into private lives and businesses. Look what's happened since, government is so pervasive in our lives now that we take that intervention for granted ...

    May 20, 2010 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  5. JohninTampa

    The problem, Sir, is that within reason one size does fit all. So we are stuck arguing what 'within reason' means. I'm sure there are things impossible, but the burden of proof should be on that side. The last 1% is always 50% of the effort. Surely by then we are way past skin tone.

    May 20, 2010 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  6. elizabeth, sacramento

    Followers of Rand Paul exemplify how education has failed in Kentucky. That cat's no "doctor." He wouldn't recognize the Hippocratic oath if it bit him in the butt (hypocritic maybe). He NEEDS a doctor! Tea partiers give so-so street theatre, but if this is their idea of "taking back America," they obviously are referring to the 18th century.

    May 20, 2010 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  7. Kate, Atlanta

    Hey Doc, there is an exemption in the ADA for buildings 3 stories or less, so your example doesn't work. Maybe you should know the law before commenting on it! What a total jerk.

    May 20, 2010 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  8. Republicans Are The American Taliban

    Paul is the New Taliban candidate....

    May 20, 2010 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  9. debbie

    Rand Paul can try to use a good offensive as a good defense but its pretty apparent where he stands. The question is: is only Rand Paul racist or his whole state...guess we'll know that in Nov.

    May 20, 2010 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  10. Chuck Anaheim, Ca

    That's to bad, he should keep his ultra right wing ideas in his little head.

    May 20, 2010 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  11. citizen

    I don't believe Rand Paul is a racist. And if we get all caught up in calling him that, we will lose sight of the real debate...which is about the appropiate level of government involvment in how our country runs. He is a Libertarian...he believes in very little government involvment; hence his statement about the Civil Rights Act. I diagree with his position, and not because I think is a racist, but because I believe history has shown us that left to their own regulation – humans don't always do the right thing. And when they don't – everyone pays the price. You want to see the result of less government interference...check out the Gulf Coast, or Wall Street or today's educational system or the health care system. Not to mention, topics like institutionalized discriminatin and slavery,, etc. Sadly, the list goes on. The Federal Government is our protector...not just from foreign enemies, but from those whose greed and ignorance gets int the way of all human rights.

    May 20, 2010 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  12. Tony

    "The Southern states weren't correcting it, and there was a need for federal intervention."
    Back then the states were sanctioning private businesses to apply segregation. Without the federal law alot of those businesses would still be applying sgregation, and it doesnt just apply to the south.
    When is this guy and many like him going to wake up and realize that racism is still prevalent in this country. Look at what's happening in Arizona!

    May 20, 2010 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  13. Mitchell

    Dr. Paul's views are based on strong libertarian principles of private property ownership and individual responsibility. If you do not respect the property rights of individuals and business owners then you get what we've got - bloated government that attempts to control our lives. Dr. Paul is hardly a racist because he supports the right of private property owners to decide who can and cannot frequent their establishments.

    If a business owner discriminates against blacks, Mexicans, the Irish or purple people eaters then that is his right as the owner of that property. The flip side is you have just as much right to NOT frequent the establishment of a known racist and you have the right to convince others to not go there as well.

    It is sad that people confuse the issues so much. Yes, racism is bad, but so is violating the property right and the free speech of racist. If it bothers someone so much that this business excludes someone because of race then don't go there. It's that simple really.

    May 20, 2010 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  14. J.T.

    Whatever Paul, you been caught in a lie. You will make a great politician.

    May 20, 2010 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  15. The Big J

    The only thing more out of control is this guy's mouth!

    May 20, 2010 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  16. CAW in MD

    Yeah, that darn media, accurately reporting what you say! Some nerve!

    As for a honeymoon, you actually have to win something. All you've won is the right to compete in the general election. If you want a honeymoon for that, I can't wait to see what you think you're entitled to if you actually win the general election. I very much hope that the people of Kentucky take note of this buffoon and do not send him to Washington.

    And finally, If you don't want the media on your back, don't say stupid things.

    May 20, 2010 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  17. Mike in NYC

    The federal intervention in the South during the 1960's largely, but not solely, set the precedent for an all-powerful central government that will eventually destroy us.

    May 20, 2010 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  18. The Rev'd Raymond H. Burgoon-Clark

    Capitalism will "do the right thing" when pigs file flight plans.

    May 20, 2010 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  19. Ms Lovelee

    What did he expect to happen while running for office.

    May 20, 2010 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  20. Republicans is smart in the head area

    Whining already, Rand? You have a lonnnnnng way to go.

    May 20, 2010 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  21. Frank in valparaiso indiana

    He just won his party primary, how stupid is this yokel? Did his dad tell him NOTHING about campaigning? And he's running for Senate of the state, he has what, months to win? What a grifter.

    May 20, 2010 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  22. Every

    This man was caught with his "size 12" in his mouth! He said on rachel Maddow's show, he believed the government making privately owned businesses obey the civil rights law was a mistake, and he would not have that part of the civil rights legislation! This Tea Bag was squeezed by Rachel Maddow and spilled his extremist entrails, and now is back peddaling, spinning his words until CNN and FOX portray his as a victim who was misquoted and misunderstood! CNN, why didn't you call him out on his hypocrisy and extremist positions! CNN, you need to take interviewer lessons from Rachel Maddow!

    May 20, 2010 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  23. Aaron

    What the media is doing with Rand Paul's stance on private ownership and small business rights is appauling. Taking his sensible, philosophical stance on the federal governments role in a small business and vilifying it for political gain is disgusting. I would expect a reasonable media outlet to have an intellectual debate about the stance, but not to appeal to emotions to get higher ratings. Its disgusting.

    May 20, 2010 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  24. lost in Texas FOREVER

    uh oh looks like we have another "Sarah Palin" in the making...can't stand to have possible negative things said about him in the press by the evil left wing media. Give me a break least being a Republican you won't have to worry about the right wing wacko talk show bunch like Limbaugh, Beck and Hannity riding your case and saying that everything you do is WRONG. And just think you have FoxNews to be buddies with as well. The honeymoon was over when you opened mouth and inserted foot now you have to live with least from the left's point of view for now.

    May 20, 2010 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  25. Mike

    Do not worry, the people of Kentucky know what you meant and that is what matters. The brain dead liberal media will do their normal spin but that is ok, they have few followers and they are mostly brain dead liberals.

    May 20, 2010 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
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