Neocons Are Quietly Freaking Out Over Rand Paul's Increasing Popularity


Gage Skidmore

"Rand Paul's positions and rapid ascent have alarmed many Republican hawks," reports NRO's Robert Costa. "Behind the scenes, they're worried that he has a shot at the nomination." 

What do the hawks plan to do about it? They're calling in The 'Stache, AKA former Undersecretary of State and U.N. Ambassador John R. Bolton: 

Bolton, a former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, is being encouraged by several leading conservative power brokers to consider a presidential bid.

Bolton, who briefly considered running for president in 2012, hasn't made up his mind. But sources tell me that he is moving closer to giving the idea serious consideration — serious enough to travel to Iowa and New Hampshire.

Later this year and throughout 2014, the former Reagan and Bush official will begin an informal national tour. He'll give speeches, huddle with GOP leaders, and push back against the party's libertarian shift. He'll make the case for a muscular foreign policy.

Sources say Bolton is also planning to launch a few related groups that will help elevate his argument and his national profile. Whether the efforts evolve into a presidential campaign in a couple years is unclear, but Bolton is, without a doubt, looking to be a player.

The GOP has all these hot young superstars–Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, Paul–plus some more seasoned folks–Scott Walker, Paul Ryan, Kelly Ayotte, Chris Christie–and the neocons push Bolton? How the mighty have fallen!

NEXT: A.M. Links: Obama Focuses Hot Air on Climate Change, Benghazi Security Decision Made By Top State Department Officials, Regulators Preparing to Sue Jon Corzine

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  1. The GOP has all these hot young superstars

    Can’t wait for the calendar!

    1. “The Men of the GOP”

  2. Bolton? No way. Why should Rand Paul change? He’s the one who sucks.

    1. Sup, G?

    2. He’s going to ask me to vote in 2016 and I’m going to do it, because I’m a pussy, which is why I participate in this two-party horse race, in the first place.

      1. It won’t matter in the end because the electronic voting machines will put a decimal point in the wrong place or something. They always mess up some mundane detail.

        1. like in superman 3.

  3. There is only one The ‘Stache, and it’s name is Stossel.

    1. +1 Stache

    2. Geraldo might disagree.

      1. Geraldo is just a man with a shit stained upper lip.

    3. You have never hear of T?mas Friedman?

      1. He had to get his imported from China.

  4. Never trust a Bolton or a Frey. Thankfully, this one’s tendency toward madness and his evil ‘stache make him even less appealing to the smallfolk than Ramsay.

    Calling Manderly. We need a pie here.

    1. I think that this Bolton is even more evil than Ramsay. Crazier too.

      1. “A naked man has few secrets; a flayed man, none.” would be an appropriate modern replacement for “E pluribus unum.”.

    2. Bolton to his bastard; “Don’t make me rue the day I raped your mother.”

      I’ll vote for him, that’s just the kind of honesty we need.

  5. I’m sure Americans just can’t wait to vote for a balding, neocon Ned Flanders.

    1. neoconlibs would rather lose than elect a noninterventionist

  6. Did I click an onion link or something? Bolton?? lulz

    1. Hey, he’s not Obozo!
      (worked for him)

    2. They’re out of their fucking mind. What, they thought Santorum was too moderate and electable?

  7. Maybe he would be used to (attempt to) kneecap Rand on foreign policy in the primaries, while Rubio (whose foreign policy is attractive to neocons) remains cheerfully above the fray.

    1. I’m seeing a bit of conspiracy theory here. Remember, if it can be stupidity or conspiracy, go with the first.

      1. neocons are slippery and slimy fiends and eat goat babies. but they are not stupid.

    2. Maybe, but Rubio’s pretty much doused any presidential hopes he may have had in kerosene and set them on fire via the immigration bill. All the foreign policy sniping in the world at Rand Paul isn’t going to save Rubio. Besides, as someone whose family is pretty deeply involved in Team Red politics, I think I’m comfortable in saying that hawkishness is largely on the outs. Or, at least, it’s become an issue of comparatively minor importance.

      In any case, I think Scott Walker’s going to be the real front-runner if he chooses to run. He’s been elected twice in a fairly strong D state, his signature moment was fighting public employee unions (always a big fan favorite), and his position in Madison allows him to neatly remain quiet and ambiguous about divisive issues. Governors historically have been much more successful presidential candidates anyway.

    3. Matt,

      You are living in a bubble if you think Rubio has a chance at anything. Republicans hate his guts for the immigration bill. He is not “above the fray”. He is done. I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets primaried in 2016. I have never seen a politician rise so fast and flame out so badly so quickly before.

      At this point, his only hope for President is to run as some kind of third party “establishment, big media and various other top men” party. But I think Fatty and Nanny up in New Jersey and New York probably have a lock on that run if they want it. Rubio is in a no man’s land. He is too conservatively economically to appeal to liberals and conservatives will never forgive him for the immigration bill. So other than the editorial page of the WSJ, I can’t see who would vote for him.

      1. It’s only 2013. Way to soon to write anyone off. We’ve seen this movie 2008 when John McCain drew the same level of hatred over immigration.

        1. McCain never wrote a bill this bad. And McCain’s immigration bill never got passed. If the bill dies, which it might, you are correct people might forgive Rubio. If it passes, he is done.

          One other thing, McCain was a war hero, Rubio is not. That means a lot to Republican voters. And McCain never made a gaffe like Rubio’s aide did last week saying that American workers suck and need to be replaced by harder working Mexicans. Many white Republicans have concluded Rubio is a racist, something they never concluded about McCain. That quote is going to haunt Rubio for a very long time.

          1. My war heroes escape from tiger cages… not handed over like dirty laundry.

            1. McCain was a pilot. He landed in the middle of Hanoi with a broken back. He was not going to escape. No one escaped from the Hanoi Hilton. McCain spent years being tortured but never rolled over and never let them use him as a propaganda tool. When they wanted to let him out early, he said no. He told them to send the guys who had been there longer home because he knew they were going to send him home and then tell every other prisoner that the US only wanted him, the son of an admiral back, and didn’t care about getting them back.

              You can talk all you want. But to sit there for years and then have the chance to leave and turn it town takes balls. Anyone who thinks they know they would rise to that occasion is kidding themselves. You hope you would rise to that occasion.

              Being a war hero doesn’t make you a good politician. But go fuck yourself with a telephone poll if you don’t realize what McCain did.

              1. Being a good soldier and war hero does not necessarily make you a good politician…that may be an oxymoron. The DNC rejoiced when McCain was nominated. They will rejoice again when Christy is nominated because they know Hillary can beat him in the hundred yard dash and everything else but distance pissing. Rand Paul may not be the favorite of the NeoCons but to me thats reason enough to make him the nominee.

              2. John, 29 year old Marine Corps Iraq vet relying here. McCain did an admirable thing during his time in service. He displayed uncommon valor during his time as a POW. That doesn’t require the least bit of deference to his political opinions or platform. It is evidence that they are sincere and come from a man of principle. That’s all. It doesn’t mean his opinion or platform is correct.

          2. It was also McCain’s turn – Rubio’s way too far back in the line to overcome ill will from the base.

          3. McCain never wrote a bill this bad.


            1. This one is worse I think.

              1. Hasn’t passed yet. That counts for a lot.

  8. Please, please do this Neo-Cons. Unite behind Bolton, he’s your man, if he can’t do it, no one can.


  10. Bolton has as much chance of winning the nomination as Epi’s mom. It just ain’t gonna happen.

    (and by somehow saying this I somehow cursed the world. All hail President Bolton!)

    1. Epi’s mom has a mustache?

      1. Of all people you should know that.

      2. You’re probably the only person who doesn’t know this. You need to get on the house call list.

    2. I think she can sleep with enough guys in exchange for votes to have a shot.

  11. a) No one knows who he is;
    b) Anyone (except Bill Kristol) who knows who he is thinks he’s a moron.

    1. He was already elected President of Red Eye.

  12. So, GOP is already planning on how to shoot themselves in the goddamn foot?

    Nevermind the popular, young, CONTRASTABLE star in our party, let’s serve up another tired, shitty holdover from the Bush years. Hey, why not put Ashcroft in the running!

    If the GOP spikes Paul, I’m done with them for good.

    1. Hey, why not put Ashcroft in the running!

      Because Ashcroft isnt a neo-con, so that doesnt help them any.

    2. I’m already done with them (GOP) for good. I send my donations straight to the candidates that espouse my values. The RNC is just like the DNC, far too deep into the old game to care about our Liberty.

  13. John Bolton? They can’t be serious. They really do live in a bubble if they think Bolton, a guy who has never held elective office, has no personal fortune and no celebrity status could be a contender for anything.

    1. The Republicans went with Wendell Willkie in 1940

      A guy who had been a Democrat most of his life

      A guy who had campaigned for FDR in 1932

      A guy who never held elective office

      A guy whose only claim to fame was as a corporate lawyer and CEO of a electric company.

      1. …and he got 82 electoral votes vs FDRs 449. So what’s your point?

        1. That the stupid party does stupid things.

          1. Which stupid party? We have two.

            1. No, we have an evil party and a stupid party.

              1. Which is which?


        2. That the people who run the Republican Party would rather lose then pick someone who did not follow their preferred policies.

          1. First of all, comparing 2016 to 1940 is simply idiotic.

            Second of all, who should have been nominated in 1940.

      2. I think they went for Wilke because FDR paid them off with various cabinet positions in the next administration. People forget that the New Deal was dead by 1940. It had failed and everyone hated it. Hell, FDR didn’t even like it anymore. Leftists have done a great job or writing FDR’s second term out of history. It was so bad Arthur Schlesinger never got around to writing the volume covering it in his multi volume FDR biography. It just goes from the New Deal to World War II.

        By 1940 both sides were just horse trading trying to figure out how they were going to fight the war they knew was coming.

  14. I think we all know that Team Red will never give Crazy Rand Paul a serious shot at the finish line. The only real question about 2016 is whether the Neocons or the Theocons will choose the form of the destroyer.

    1. It is Santorum’s turn in 2016. Theocon + Son of Working Man = GOP nod.

      1. Well Mr. Buttplug, if that happens, then you can celebrate that we and you will agree on at least one thing.

  15. No one with a mustache, or any facial hair for that matter, can get elected. Don’t know why, but it’s just the way it is.

      1. I meant as president.

      2. Don’t forget the “Red Diaper Depends” wearer from Hawaii…..Abercrombie. He looks like homeless guy.

    1. Didn’t Teddy have a handlebar? Maybe it’s a no plain stache guideline. I look forward to our first amish president and his chinstrap or neck-tee (a la Trading Places) face warmer.

    2. Every president from Lincoln to Taft, with a couple of exceptions, rocked some facial hair. It was a pain to shave back then.

      1. Isn’t it a remarkable coincidence that, around the time the Presidents started shaving, they started sucking?

  16. “Rand Paul’s positions and rapid ascent have alarmed many Republican hawks,”

    As seen by NR’s recent setup piece by Rich Lowry where they can now say that they’ve “praised him in the past” as they stick daggers in his back when it counts.

  17. GOP is already planning on how to shoot themselves in the goddamn foot?

    Idiocy never takes a vacation.

  18. What I hear from the right – they want a “true conservative”. Now I don’t know what they mean by that but they all say it.

    1. A “true conservative” is someone who preaches small government rhetoric, but in practice is a big government liberal who opposes abortion.

      1. Succinct!

    2. They/b don’t know what they mean by it. They glance around at each other trying not to be the 1st to talk when a new issue is brought up.

  19. The GOP wouldn’t support Bolton when he shaved the ‘stache and was using the name “Newt”. Why would they support him now?

    1. And don’t forget, Newt has a following. People know him and like him. And he accomplished something. Bolton has none of that. This story is nothing but inside beltway bullshit. Nothing will ever come of it.

      1. did he get that moon base built? or was it that he accomplished making a budget deal that the other side renigged on after they got what they wanted from negotiating with Newt.

  20. From the minds that brought you John McCain, it’s the stupid party vs. the evil party. It never, ever changes.

    1. The people who want Bolton are most certainly not the people who supported McCain. These people hated and hate McCain’s guts.

    2. It the stupid and evil party vs. the evil and stupid party.

  21. Rand Paul pisses me off plenty with his pandering, but he certainly has made all the right enemies.

    1. that goes a long way.

    2. That’s the kind of thinking that disgusts me. Nobody should want enemies. They’re an unfortunate byproduct at best.

      1. While you should not necessarily seek out enemies, there are people who are good to have as enemies because they show you’re doing the right thing.

  22. I can’t wait to see Bolton’s reaction when someone tells him we have a black president.

  23. Does the GOP really think that the American public are silly enough to be fooled into voting for their establishment candidate by a high level political marketing campaign? Oh….yeah are actually.

  24. An email I received from Rand Paul in April:

    “Sign the petition to bypass Roe v. Wade?”

    A highlight:
    “Working from what the Supreme Court ruled in Roe v. Wade, pro-life lawmakers can pass a Life at Conception Act and end abortion using the Constitution instead of amending it.”

    Were I a Democrat, I would LOVE Rand Paul to be the nominee, so I could use as a hammer against him.

    1. so much for state rights

      but yeah, Rand pisses off the right people, yet shares some of their statism on other issues. Not exactly someone I can support in good conscious

      1. How is that not in line with states’ rights? He’s saying each state can pass a Life at Conception Act effectively ending abortion in their state. If anything, Roe v. Wade made the whole issue federal, and Paul wants to bring it back to the states.

    2. But eventually the question has to be resolved: when is it a baby? A mother can never have a choice or right to kill a baby, no matter how ingrained the “right to choose” has become in our political rhetoric. If it’s a baby, it’s murder. If it’s not a baby, the government has nothing to say about it.

      I don’t pretend to know the answer. But the question belongs to the states.

  25. Those worthless neocon scumbags had better be worried. It’s time to turn this thing on it’s head and get a real Liberterian party going. I’m sick of the 2 parties and their nonsense. There’s not a dimes worth of difference between them.

  26. just like in Superman 3.

  27. He declared his candidacy on Red Eye last night.

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