Right-wing media figures are criticizing 2016 hopeful Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) for his comments blaming the rise of ISIS on Republican foreign policy positions, lashing out at Paul as an “Obama Republican” and accusing him of “rewriting history.”
Rand Paul Blames Fellow Republicans For Rise Of ISIS
Rand Paul: Existence And Strength Of ISIS Due To Hawks In Republican Party. On the May 27 edition of MSNBC's Morning Joe, Senator Rand Paul said in an interview with host Joe Scarborough that “hawks” in the Republican Party were to blame for the rise of ISIS:
PAUL: ISIS exists and grew stronger because of the hawks in our party who gave arms indiscriminately and most of those arms were snatched up by ISIS. These hawks also wanted to bomb Assad, which would have made ISIS' job even easier. They created these people. ISIS is all over Libya because these same hawks in my party loved -- they loved Hillary Clinton's war in Libya. They just wanted more of it. But Libya is a failed state. It's a disaster. Iraq really is a failed state or a vassal state now of Iran. So everything that they have talked about in foreign policy they have been wrong about for 20 years and yet they have somehow the gall to keep saying and pointing fingers otherwise. [MSNBC, Morning Joe, 5/27/15]
Conservative Media Attack Paul's Comments As “Completly Out Of Touch”
Fox's Hume: Paul Made A “Peculiar Argument” As A Republican Presidential Candidate. On the May 27 edition of Fox News' Special Report, commentator Brit Hume called Paul's argument “peculiar,” pointing to Al Qaeda in Iraq's “humiliating defeat by the US military surge” under President George W. Bush as evidence of the GOP's supposed anti-terror success. [Fox News, Special Report, 5/27/15]
Fox's Perino: Paul Out Of Touch With Republicans. On the May 27 edition of Fox News' The Kelly File, Fox contributor Dana Perino called Paul's claim “false” and said Paul was “completely out of touch with most Republican voters.” [Fox News, The Kelly File, 5/27/15]
WSJ: Paul Is Rewriting History. In an editorial titled, “Rand Paul Created ISIS,” The Wall Street Journal criticized Paul's remarks for “rewriting history,” warning that “Republicans who begin their campaigns assailing other Republicans rarely succeed”:
Speaking of gall, and a word of political advice, an aide might want to remind Senator Paul which party's nomination he is seeking. Republicans who begin their campaigns assailing other Republicans rarely succeed--especially when the accusation is culpability for a would-be caliphate that uses executions, slavery, extortion, rape and general terror to enforce oppression in the Middle East and North Africa, and whose ideology inspires jihadists world-wide.
Mr. Paul is intelligent enough, and his misreading of recent Middle Eastern history is so flagrant, that he might be trying to deflect attention from his own misjudgments. In Mr. Obama's second term, the U.S. has largely followed Mr. Paul's foreign-affairs preferences to the letter, and the result has been more chaos and disorder.
Mr. Paul seems to think he can win the GOP nomination on an anti-interventionist platform, though we think he'd be better off focusing on his domestic agenda. But if he wants to run as an Obama Republican on foreign policy, he shouldn't also adopt the Obama trick of rewriting history. It reflects poorly on his judgment as a potential Commander in Chief. [The Wall Street Journal, 5/27/15]
Breitbart: “Rand Paul Joins Left In Blaming GOP 'Hawks' For ISIS.” Breitbart writer Joel Pollak claimed that Paul should have blamed Obama for ISIS instead, and that “many voters” are worried that Paul would have made the same decisions on Iraq as Obama. [Breitbart.com, 5/27/15]