Rand Paul vs. Marco Rubio vs. Barack Obama

And in this corner.... Rand Paul! ||| CREDIT: Gage Skidmore, via Wikimedia CommonsCREDIT: Gage Skidmore, via Wikimedia CommonsAfter President Barack Obama delivers the State of the Union address tonight, the Republican Party will hand over its (usually thankless) response duties to alleged GOP savior and widely projected 2016 contender Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Florida). Then the Tea Party will hand the mic over to libertarian Republican and widely projected 2016 contender Sen. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky). The headlines write themselves:

* "Rand Paul, Marco Rubio duel for soul of tea party in speeches opposing Obama’s State of the Union"

* "Rubio and Paul preview possible 2016 showdown in State of the Union responses"

* "Why Rand Paul Is Marco Rubio's Biggest Political Threat"

* "Will Rand Paul upstage Marco Rubio's response to Obama?"

And so on.

And in this corner...Mar-co Ru-bi-o! ||| CREDIT: Gage Skidmore, via Wikimedia CommonsCREDIT: Gage Skidmore, via Wikimedia CommonsHow do these onetime anti-establishment Class of 2010 Tea Party senators compare? Looking at their respective high-profile speeches at the 2012 Republican National Convention, Rubio is more likely to stress his family's humble immigrant story, remind less recent Americans how powerful the American dream still is, and say stuff like "almighty God is the source of all we have." Paul will probably make more references to the Constitution, and include Republicans in at least some of the blame for persistent debt/deficit/spending since the Tea Party wave of 2010.

The big difference between the two, and what makes any Rubio/Paul contest interesting (both in terms of the GOP and also the Tea Party), is foreign policy. Rand Paul may be triangulating from his father and dressing up his imperial scale-back in the questionably fitting clothes of Ronald Reagan and George Kennan, but he rarely passes up an opportunity to tell Republicans that they need to cut military spending and re-think open-ended interventionism. Rubio, on the other hand, is more likely to slam Obama for not being interventionist enough.

Given that the Tea Party for the most part has studiously avoided foreign policy disputes, this contest for its sympathies is genuinely up for grabs. That said, I wouldn't expect too much on the subject from either young senator, given the State of the Union's likely preoccupation with jobs, spending cuts, and guns. 

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • sarcasmic||

  • Rasilio||

    My money is on Gamera. Nothing beats a giant flying turtle

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    The giant circular saw in Gigan's belly would cut through Gamera's shell like a hot knife through wasabi.

    You fail at daikaiju.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    Gamera is really sweet, he is made of turtle meat.

  • Proprietist||

    I vote for Minira.

  • John||

    Run them as a unity ticket in a death match against Biden and Hillary. That way either the first Hispanic gets elected or the first functionally retarded man and the first woman get elected. Make history in 2016!!

  • Ken Shultz||

    It's kinda weird, but 2016 won't really be between whatever Democrat and the Republicans.

    Obama will campaign for whoever the Democrat candidate is--just as if he were campaigning for himself.

    As sorry as I am to say it, Hillary or Biden really could slide in--even if it's a Hillary/Biden ticket, the election will still be a referendum on Obama.

  • John||

    It will be a referendum on Obama but without the feel good "lets vote for the black man" vibe. I don't think that is a good thing for Democrats.

  • Hyperion||

    The Dems already have that race won. It doesn't matter who they run. If they put up a homeless person just off the street, win. A chimpanzee, win. Dig up Hitler and run his dead body, win.

    It's all about free stuff, and the Dems will promise more of it, win.

    We don't even need to have the election.

  • John||

    I don't think it is that simple. I know lots of Obama voters who do not want free shit. They are not even that sophisticated. He won mostly because he won by huge margins among love information, late deciding voters. If you don't pay a lot of attention, don't care about politics and get your news when you get it from the major networks, you probably do believe Obama is a well meaning moderate and the economy is really turning around.

  • Hyperion||

    I don't think it is that simple

    I know you don't think it is that simple. But, I know that it is.

    Those Obama voters that you know, are just a small minority. The 50% of the population who want 2 things, free shit, and more free shit, are now an insurmountable majority in a national election. It really is just that simple.

  • John||

    A lot people who want free shit vote Republican. The Dems don't exactly have a monopoly on the free shit vote.

    And low information voters are not rare. They are most people. Most people have no idea what a moron Obama is or how big of a disaster his Presidency has been because they only know what the media tells them.

  • sarcasmic||

    A lot people who want free shit vote Republican. The Dems don't exactly have a monopoly on the free shit vote.

    At least Republicans make people pretend to work for their free shit. I'm thinking defense contractors specifically.

  • Hyperion||

    At least Republicans make people pretend to work for their free shit.

    I personally know folks on total government assistance, young able bodied, with no intention of getting a job, now, or ever. Why should they, when they can live better than I can, working full time and then some?

  • Hyperion||

    And low information voters are not rare

    That's about 90+% of our population. But the majority of them want free stuff, and the Dems are the free stuff party.

    Did I just read somewhere that there are now 40 million people on food stamps? That's somewhere around 20% of the population! And it's expanding at warp speed. In this country, success is now punished(except for cronyism, if you want to call that success), and sloth is rewarded. We are screwed.

  • Cytotoxic||

    If the people just want free shit, why do the GOP hold so many states at both governor and legislature?

  • anon||

    Cyto, not everyone wants free shit, just the majority of the country.

    My personal theory is the more rural of an area you live, the more you understand that there's no free lunch and nobody to give you free shit.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Explain the GOP house majority then...

    The reality is both parties are for free shit. To paraphrase the Fresh Prince, the difference between BO and Dem House candidates is that he makes their free shit look good.

  • SugarFree||

    If the people just want free shit, why do the GOP hold so many states at both governor and legislature?

    They want slightly different--yet equally expensive--free shit.

  • anon||

    BUT IT'S FREE SO IT DOESN'T MATTER RIGHT???//

    /retard

  • ||

    40Million is about 13%, but that is still fucking ridiculous.

  • Hyperion||

    It will be 20, soon enough:

    11K a day

  • Mensan||

    ... first functionally retarded man ...

    Functionally? That's generous of you, John.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    OT: The British are very diferent from us:

    Just as powerful opioids are tightly restricted in the United Kingdom, so are painkillers to which most Americans don't give a second thought. While you can walk into virtually any U.S. drugstore and pick up a bottle of ibuprofen or acetaminophen with 400 or 500 tablets, the largest size on UK shelves contains just 16 pills. If you consult a pharmacist and he or she approves, you can purchase 32 pills.

    "We have to protect the patient," says Howard Silver, a pharmacist at Gateway Chemist in London, who notes that even a moderate overdose of Tylenol can cause liver damage and even death. Shown a typical 400-count bottle of acetaminophen from a U.S. drugstore, Silver shook his head with dismay.

    "I'm astonished," he says. "That's a bottle of death."
  • Raston Bot||

    pussies

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    "I'm astonished," he says. "That's a bottle of death."

    Citation needed.

  • Ice Nine||

    I don't have a citation handy but if you care to trust me, that should be bottle of deaths as 400 acetominophen is enough to kill ten people.

    I'm just answering your question. The Golden Gate Bridge is enough to kill hundreds of people. So what?

  • Sudden||

    The thing is if you take 400 acetominophen within a single sitting, you fucking deserve to die. Thinning the herd, it's what we really oughtta do.

  • Mensan||

    It doesn't take anywhere near 400 pills to OD on APAP. Besides the fact that people often just take too many (or take it with alcohol), it's also a component of many prescription and OTC meds. We see more accidental ODs from it in the ER than any other drug.

  • ||

    They have that here in Czechia also. No limits but everything is sole in expensive blister packs with small quantities for some reason.

    The problem with acetaminophen is that it is a shitty painkiller but gets over-prescribed as a substitute for real painkillers when there is real pain. The result: tons of unnecessary liver damage.

    http://www.psychologytoday.com.....-war-drugs

  • entropy||

    It is only a matter a time before Big Macs come in blisterpaks too. If a Super Big Gulp full of soda is too much for John Q. Public to handle, I can't imagine we'll just go on letting them buttchug cough syrup and choke eating a whole bottle of antacids.

  • ||

    Actually cooking meat in blister packs is pretty awesome, or so I've heard.

  • T||

    I built a rig and experimented a little. I need to do some more experimentin'.

  • ||

    PS, this article (and the guy who wrote it) are pure awesome. I'm glad that there are doctors out there writing like this for major medical/psychological publications/websites today. People don't think about these sort of perverse dealings unless they're called attention to.

  • Hyperion||

    Yes, the Brits have outpaced us in the race to total retard. So have the Aussies. What's the point?

  • Lost_In_Translation||

    Free peek into our future?

  • Hyperion||

    Different demographics, will be different here. Britain and most of Europe will be an Islamic Caliphate in 20 years. We will either be a totalitarian police state, or a nation split into several smaller nations. Avoiding economic collapse at this point, with our government, is impossible. It's already too late.

  • Cytotoxic||

    That is nonsense. The demographics make Islamic takeover in Europe impossible.

  • Hyperion||

    That is nonsense. The demographics make Islamic takeover in Europe impossible.

    Don't think too much, do you?

  • Sudden||

    Caliphate in Eurabia, true. Our dystopian nightmare resulting from demographic trends and our current economic direction would best be described as economic collapse followed by military Junta in the Latin American mold.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Seriously?

    I observe that people in certain countries pee in their water supply, and you call me a xenophobic racist drone-murderer, and now you accuse Islamic immigrants in Europe of turning it into a caliphate.

  • Hyperion||

    STFU, Tulpa. You did in fact, say that.

  • Hyperion||

    Also, the only thing that I called you, is NeoCon. And I meant that.

  • Jordan||

    We must not allow ourselves to fall behind! USA! USA! USA!

  • Mensan||

    Last time I was in Australia I bought codeine over the counter.

  • anon||

    Wait, eating 400 acetaminophen pills at once could cause harm or even death?

    Say it ain't so.

  • Mensan||

    Not could; will. More than 8 in 24-hours could cause harm.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I thought doctors in the US had a God complex.

    While U.S. doctors are also supposed to consider alternatives to medication, many are swayed by insistent patients, says Dr. Anthony Ordman, who runs the long-term pain clinic at London's Royal Free Hospital that he founded in 1997.

    By contrast, Ordman says, "The physician (in the UK) has a salary ... that takes away certain influences that the patient may have on the physician's thinking. I don't necessarily have to be liked by my patients."

    [...]

    "I tell (patients), 'You must please stick to the dose I prescribed for you and you must not escalate it without medical permission. You must keep the medication locked up and safe. You must please not lose your prescriptions, because I'm not going to replace them,' " Ordman says. "You begin to see we're almost building up a contract between physician and patient."

    Yes... a contract where one party has been forbidden by law from contracting with anyone else but the other party.

  • ||

    I read this, and then realized I'm sitting next to a 500-count bottle of acetaminophen. I'm a dead-man walking, according to Silver. Many times over, in fact. I sit next to this bottle EVERY. DAY. Yet I'm still alive. It's a miracle, I must be immortal! What a moron.

  • Raston Bot||

    Proposed Biden/Hillary 2016 campaign slogan:

    ...and hilarity ensued.

  • John||

    What difference does it make?

  • anon||

    I'd vote for a Biden/Hillary ticket just to hasten our own demise.

  • Raston Bot||

    just to give em what they want good n' hard.

  • Ted Levy||

    Rubio won't be satisfied until the US invades Cuba and gets his family's land back.

  • cavalier973||

    I wonder how many second and third generation Cubans still harbor that idea.

    It's a shame that the Castros are such evil buffoons; the Cuban immigrants to the US proved themselves to be exceptional entrepreneurs. The island would probably be one of the best places in the world to live, were it not for communism.

  • kwais||

  • The Real Jose||

    The biggest difference between the two is not foreign policy, it is immigration policy.

    Rand Paul: Current policy is jus' fine. We just need more-bigger-fence... (Continued below. Freakin' squirrels!)

  • The Real Jose||

    ...Oh, and no more birthright citizenship.

    Marco Rubio: "Mr. Rubio would ease the way for skilled engineers and seasonal farm workers while strengthening border enforcement and immigration laws. As for the undocumented migrants in America today—eight to 12 million or so—he proposes to let them 'earn' a working permit and, one day, citizenship." (1)

  • IceTrey||

    Rubio not a natural born Citizen because his parents weren't citizens when he was born.

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online

  • Progressive Puritans: From e-cigs to sex classifieds, the once transgressive left wants to criminalize fun.
  • Port Authoritarians: Chris Christie’s Bridgegate scandal
  • The Menace of Secret Government: Obama’s proposed intelligence reforms don’t safeguard civil liberties

SUBSCRIBE

advertisement