Editorials

During debate, Paul was voice of reason

Rand Paul cautioned against the rush to war during the CNN Republican presidential debate in Las Vegas on Tuesday.
Rand Paul cautioned against the rush to war during the CNN Republican presidential debate in Las Vegas on Tuesday. The Associated Press

Tuesday’s Republican primary foreign-policy debate on CNN featured a breathtaking level of bluster and macho posturing, and not just by the Blowhard Brothers, Donald Trump and Chris Christie.

Carly Fiorina seemed eager to go woman-a-mano with Vladimir Putin. John Kasich blubbered with schoolyard bravado that the Russian needed a “punch in the nose.” And there was merry unanimity about how cowardly, weak President Barack Obama and his puppet Hillary Clinton won’t stand up to the evildoer Islamic terrorists, won’t even call them what they are, and haven’t “kept America safe.” (Presumably, the fact that 9/11 happened on the GOP watch wasn’t lost on at least one candidate.)

Amid the histrionics about inserting more U.S. military force into the Middle East, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul was a relative voice of reason, arguing, correctly, that such force has vast unintended consequences, plays into the hands of radical Islamists and demonstrably doesn’t work.

Paul also slipped in a sly zinger, tagging the ever-bellicose Christie as the “World War III” candidate.

If, as appears likely, Kentucky’s junior senator is among the next wave of also-rans in the campaign, the party will miss an important voice on a number of issues, none more consequential than the limits of American power.

Not that anyone on the Las Vegas stage was listening.

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