Rand Paul Ronald Reagan Jimmy Carter: The Kentucky Republican's history of dissing a party icon.
Rand Paul Has Long History of Dissing Reagan
The Slatest
Your News Companion
April 23 2014 10:23 AM

Rand Paul Has Long History of Saying Jimmy Carter Was Better on Spending Than Ronald Reagan

Jimmy Carter with Sandinista leader Daniel Ortega.

Photo by MIGUEL ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images

Rand Paul, by most accounts, would like to be the Republican Party's nominee in the 2016 presidential election. He also has a libertarian, isolationist background that has lately been causing him problems with the hawkish party establishment in re: foreign policy. Today Mother Jones documents what could be an even bigger pain for Paul: his long history of comparing Ronald Reagan—who some conservatives literally want to carve on Mount Rushmore and whose presidential library hosted a 2011 GOP primary debate—unfavorably with Jimmy Carter, who is a freakin' Democrat. Specifically, Paul has said often that Reagan had a worse record on containing government spending than his White House predecessor:

"Why did the deficit rise [under Reagan]? Because spending rose more dramatically under Reagan than it did under Carter. Well, you say, 'Reagan's a conservative, Carter's a liberal.' Not necessarily always what it seems."

Check out the MoJo piece for many more examples, backed up with video clips that Jeb Bush and Ted Cruz's staffs are currently bookmarking/watching over and over on the flatscreen in the office conference room. 

Ben Mathis-Lilley edits the Slatest. Follow @Slatest on Twitter.

  Slate Plus
Slate Archives
Nov. 26 2015 10:00 AM Slate Voice: “If It Happened There,” Thanksgiving Edition Josh Keating reads his piece on America’s annual festival pilgrimage.