Rand Paul Made Sure to Cite Everyone In His Speech Today—Even Himself

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Nov. 12 2013 3:57 PM

Rand Paul Made Sure to Cite Everyone In His Speech Today—Even Himself

U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) delivered on his college paper-themed promise on Tuesday

Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

Anyone who followed the Great Rand Paul Plagiarism Scandal of 2013 last week will probably smile if they head on over to the Kentucky Republican's website and check out the senator's prepared remarks for the speech he gave at The Citadel earlier today. Scroll on down, and you'll count a total of 33 footnotes, citing everything from the military college's public affairs office to Ronald Reagan's first inaugural address—and even legislation Paul himself introduced in the Senate. A small sampling:

Josh Voorhees Josh Voorhees

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City. 

[5] Weinberger, C. (1984). Uses of Military Power, Retrieved from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/military/force/weinberger.html
[6] Nichols, D. (2011). Eisenhower 1956. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster. Page number?
[7] Wali, S. O., & Sami, D. A. (2011). Egyptian police using U.S.-made tear gas against demonstrators. ABC News, Retrieved from http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/egypt-protest-police-us-made-tear-gas-demonstrators/story?id=12785598
[8] Sharp, Jeremy, "Egypt: Background and U.S. Relations," See: Table 3: U.S. Foreign Assistance to Egypt, July 19, 2013; Congressional Research Service.
[9] Ibid.
10] A bill to provide limitations on United States assistance, and for other purposes, (S. 3576). 112th Cong. (2012). http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=112&session=2&vote=00196

Those near-obsessive citations are Paul making good on his somewhat defiant promise to put safeguards in place to ensure that he and his staff no longer pass off other people's work as his own. "What we are going to do from here forward, if it will make people leave me the hell alone, is we’re going to do them like college papers," he told the New York Times last week once it became clear that the citation problem first spotted by Rachel Maddow had gone mainstream.

As the tone of that statement implies, Paul was willing to concede that "mistakes" were made, but still largely dismissed the obvious examples of plagiarism as the work of "hacks and haters." A quick scan of today's footnotes suggest Paul is again using some sleight of thin-skinned hand to make it look like the problem was simply an issue of a few forgotten citations and not that he (or, more likely, someone on his staff) lifted entire passages penned by someone else without any type of attribution whatsoever, be they parts of Wikipedia's summary of the (underrated!) movie Gattaca or columns published in national publications like The Week or Fortune.

***Follow @JoshVoorhees and the rest of the @slatest team on Twitter.***



The Self-Made Man

The story of America’s most pliable, pernicious, irrepressible myth.

Does Your Child Have Sluggish Cognitive Tempo? Or Is That Just a Disorder Made Up to Scare You?

Mitt Romney May Be Weighing a 2016 Run. That Would Be a Big Mistake.

Amazing Photos From Hong Kong’s Umbrella Revolution

Rehtaeh Parsons Was the Most Famous Victim in Canada. Now, Journalists Can’t Even Say Her Name.


See Me

Transparent is the fall’s only great new show.


Lena Dunham, the Book

More shtick than honesty in Not That Kind of Girl.

What a Juicy New Book About Diane Sawyer and Katie Couric Fails to Tell Us About the TV News Business

Rehtaeh Parsons Was the Most Famous Victim in Canada. Now, Journalists Can’t Even Say Her Name.

  News & Politics
Damned Spot
Sept. 30 2014 9:00 AM Now Stare. Don’t Stop. The perfect political wife’s loving gaze in campaign ads.
Sept. 30 2014 11:25 AM Naomi Klein Is Wrong Multinational corporations are doing more than governments to halt climate change.
Atlas Obscura
Sept. 30 2014 10:10 AM A Lovable Murderer and Heroic Villain: The Story of Australia's Most Iconic Outlaw
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 29 2014 1:52 PM Do Not Fear California’s New Affirmative Consent Law
  Slate Plus
Behind the Scenes
Sept. 30 2014 10:59 AM “For People, Food Is Heaven” Boer Deng on the story behind her piece “How to Order Chinese Food.”
Brow Beat
Sept. 30 2014 10:48 AM One of Last Year’s Best Animated Shorts Is Finally Online for Free
Future Tense
Sept. 30 2014 7:36 AM Almost Humane What sci-fi can teach us about our treatment of prisoners of war.
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 30 2014 7:30 AM What Lurks Beneath the Methane Lakes of Titan?
Sports Nut
Sept. 28 2014 8:30 PM NFL Players Die Young. Or Maybe They Live Long Lives. Why it’s so hard to pin down the effects of football on players’ lives.