A more libertarian Republican Party could win in the blue states. That's the argument Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul has been road-testing, most recently in his visit last week to California.
"[T]he way we're going to compete is by running people for office who can appreciate some issues that attract young people and independents: civil liberties, as well as a less aggressive foreign policy, not putting people in jail for marijuana, a much more tolerant type of point of view," Paul told Wired during his trip to Silicon Valley.
"If you have Republican candidates like that," Paul continued, "then I think all of a sudden you'd find California back in play."
Paul repeated some of these themes to a more familiar GOP audience at Ronald Reagan's presidential library in Simi Valley. "I think to win in California we need to tell people that we're the party that wants to do nation-building at home, not always overseas," he said to applause.