Rand Paul bestiality comment 'sarcasm,' office says
June 27th, 2013
10:24 AM ET
10 years ago

Rand Paul bestiality comment 'sarcasm,' office says

(CNN) – Sen. Rand Paul's criticism of Wednesday's same-sex marriage ruling, which included a rhetorical question about bestiality eventually being made legal, was sarcasm, the Kentucky Republican's office says.

Speaking to conservative radio host Glenn Beck, Paul delved into the question of whether or not lawmakers should imbue legislation with their own morals. Beck set up the statement by wondering whether the court's ruling – which found a key provision of the federal Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional – could logically lead to polygamy becoming legal.

"If you change one variable – man and a woman – to a man and a man and a woman and a woman, you cannot tell me then that you can't logically change the other variable," Beck said. "One man, three women. One woman, four men. Who are you to say that if I am a devout Muslim and I come over here and I have three wives, who are you to say if I am an American citizen that I can't have multiple marriages?"

Paul, a potential 2016 presidential candidate whose supporters include a large number of libertarian-leaning conservatives, said Beck was getting at a larger question of whether laws can include moral designations.

"This is a conundrum, and it gets back to what you were saying …whether or not churches should decide this," Paul said. "And it is difficult, because if we have no laws on this, people take it to one extension further. Does it have to be humans?"

That remark, his office said, wasn't meant to be taken seriously.

"Sarcasm sometimes doesn't translate adequately from radio conversation," his communications director Moira Bagley said. "Sen. Paul did not suggest that striking down DOMA could lead to unusual marriage arrangements. What he was discussing was that having the state recognize marriage without definition could lead to marriages with no basis in reality."

Later in the interview, Paul stressed the economic importance of stable marriages for children.

"I also see that economically, if you don't look at it with any moral periscope, and you say, 'What is it that is the leading cause of poverty in our country?' It's having kids without marriage," Paul said. "That stability of the marriage unit is enormous, and we should not say we're punting on it and marriage can be anything."

Later, in an interview with ABC News, Paul said he thought the Supreme Court ruling on DOMA was appropriate and said the issue should be one left to the states.

As for the growing divide among Republicans on same-sex marriage, Paul said "the party is going to have to agree to disagree on some of these issues."

CNN's Kevin Liptak and Ashley Killough contributed to this report.

Filed under: Rand Paul • Same-sex marriage
soundoff (582 Responses)
  1. Jonquil

    I don't get the joke. No, it's not an interchangeable logical jump, to go from a consenting adult entering a marriage contract and an non-consenting animal, doing the same. Was this specific comment taken out of context? Were they maing fun of arguments against marriage between gay people? Otherwise, what did he mean by this random bout of humor?

    June 27, 2013 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  2. pete

    How about marry your car, or i have a real neat tree in my yard, nah the car cost like a wife so i'll go with the car

    June 27, 2013 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  3. cedar rapids

    "What is it that is the leading cause of poverty in our country?' It's having kids without marriage," Paul said.'

    So in other words its best to encourage marriage, by allowing same sex couples to marry, right?

    June 27, 2013 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  4. jcheng

    If this is ultimately "an economic issue" where the "stability of the marriage unit is enormous", then there's a bigger implication: why is divorce legal?

    Because, by definition, divorce is the ending of a marriage. Therefore, you would think that outlawing the dissolution of a marriage is something that will reinforce the "sanctity of marriage" more than "redefining who else can marry".

    June 27, 2013 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  5. mjd

    I can't think of any animal that would have a hateful fool like rand paul.

    June 27, 2013 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  6. Huh?

    Rationalization to promote their religious beliefs pure and simple in the attempt to force them down everyone else's throats.
    Forget kool-aid Rand has consumed too much tea in his pursuit of grandiose narcissistic dreams of power.

    June 27, 2013 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  7. dick Delson

    He's not only a moron, but a schmuck as well.

    June 27, 2013 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  8. reality

    Totally wrong due to the fact that the precedent for marriage is between TWO CONSENTING ADULTS. Not an adult and a cat or dog, or an adult and a boy or girl, or an adult and a farm animal. How did this guy get elected?

    June 27, 2013 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  9. pauleky

    Sorry – anyone that reaches for the bestiality argument when speaking about gay marriage loses all credibility, sarcasm or not. When animals can sign contracts, let me know – I'll take them on the road and make a mint. Just another example of the ridiculous statements made by people who would oppress others based on ignorance.

    June 27, 2013 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  10. Dana

    It's nothing more than slippery slope logical fallacy. " If we do x, then of course y and z will follow." It was bull when they'd try it in high school debate, it's been bull when they try it on a national stage, it's bull now and it'll always be bull. It's sloppy thinking. It's insulting to the intelligence of those that can see it for what it is.

    June 27, 2013 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  11. nancy behnken

    and this guy wants to be our president. good grief.

    June 27, 2013 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  12. here and back again

    Sorry Rand...that isn't sarcasm. If it was an attempt at sarcasm, it only shows how pathetically removed you are from reality and we have to question what kind of idiots would actually vote for you.

    June 27, 2013 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  13. PassingThrough

    Considering that polygamy is a common occurence in the Bible and these two clowns are all about the Bible/religion, why should it be a problem? And, yes, I concur with others that Beck (as a Mormon) would LOVE to see polygamy (along with adding polyandry) come back.

    Of course, Ayn's namesake (no matter the denials to the contrary) making a comment that the #1 cause of poverty in our country is out-of-wedlock children makes him a bigger ar$e than usual. What causes poverty is big business interests sending work offshore and paying what workers they have here minimum wage or less for their hard work. I guess they think we should be paid as if we were their 3rd world slaves.

    June 27, 2013 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  14. Denise

    They're always making references to animals. Instead of the Glenn Beck show, Rand needs to star on the new TLC show, My Strange Addiction/Obsession.

    June 27, 2013 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  15. Dana

    It's nothing more than sloppy thinking. "If we do X, then Y and Z will obviously follow." It's called a slippery slope FALLACY. Meaning that it's not rationale, or logic, or critical thinking. It's nothing more than horse manure, it was horse manure in high school debate, it's been horse manure every time they've tried it on a public stage, it's horse manure now and it'll always be horse manure.

    June 27, 2013 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  16. Foreverwar

    I think it is a fetish of his.

    June 27, 2013 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  17. Johny Smooth

    Everything Paul said in the interview and everything his office said to try to deny it indicates that Paul was definitely making a bestiality slippery slope argument against same-sex marriage.

    Paul's office-
    "What he was discussing was that having the state recognize marriage without definition could lead to marriages with no basis in reality."

    I am certain that Paul and his office would categorize 'bestiality marriage' a marriage with "no basis in reality." So I'm sure that even Paul and his office would agree one can just replace the phrase "marriages with no basis in reality" with "bestiality marriage." This of course is then clearly a bestiality slippery slope argument, which Paul and his office are squirming to try to claim that it wasn't.

    June 27, 2013 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  18. Rand Paul supporter

    Paul, your not far the truth, you most likely right on the mark of the beast

    June 27, 2013 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  19. Balls McGhee

    well, gay rights is moving forward for sure because the GOP is now back-peddling on statements they used to be proud of saying in public. Equality is coming!

    June 27, 2013 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  20. M-W-T

    I am sooooo SICK of this guy, him, hannity, faux news,......makes me want to puke.

    June 27, 2013 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  21. Tim

    CNN's headline is misleading. This isn't a dreaded "bestiality" comment, in as much as it is Paul making the point that marriage is no longer clearly defined. It could include inanimate objects, etc.

    June 27, 2013 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  22. MJW

    Why did Beck refer to Muslims coming over here with 3 or more wives? There is no reason to refer to Muslims when you have Utah which has a colony of Polygamist. And guest who they are ...just like Mr. Beck and Mr. Paul, but they are afraid to mention them, right here in the US. HYPOCRITES!!!!!!!!!

    June 27, 2013 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  23. Nat Reader

    Why is the bible only used for convenience about SSM? I have yet to hear one conservative expound about the greatness of the many holy men who had multiple wife's? I'm just say polygamy is a stupid rationale to lean on in the argument....

    June 27, 2013 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  24. George

    The only reason that Paul is now calling it a "joke" is that he got such negative feedback and that people are beginning to question his intelligence. "It's a joke." Yeah, right.

    June 27, 2013 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  25. onepercenter

    Since our schools are teaching us we are all just animals anyway, what difference does it make?

    June 27, 2013 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
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