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Rand Paul’s New Math: the Antidote for Mitt Romney and GOP’s 47% Mentality

Rand Paul presidential announcement ibtimes

Rand Paul’s announcement speech was a powerful call for some new math in the Republican Party.

“This message of liberty is for all Americans, Americans from all walks of life. The message of liberty, opportunity and justice is for all Americans, whether you wear a suit, a uniform or overalls, whether you're white or black, rich or poor,” is about as far away from Mitt Romney’s “47% will vote for the President no matter what” remark as to be its opposite.

Senator Paul went further later in his remarks when he set-up the Jack Kemp-like idea of “economic freedom zones.”

“Many Americans though are being left behind. The reward of work seems beyond their grasp. Under the watch of both parties, the poor seem to get poorer and the rich get richer. Trillion-dollar government stimulus packages has only widened the income gap.

Politically connected cronies get taxpayer dollars by the hundreds of millions and poor families across America continue to suffer. I have a different vision, an ambitious vision, an ambitious vision, a vision that will offer opportunity to all Americans, especially those who have been left behind.”

Senator Paul went on to explain his idea is that “More than $2 trillion in American profit currently sits overseas. In my vision for America, new highways and bridges will be built across the country, not by raising your taxes, but by lowering the tax to bring this American profit home.”

Many other Republicans have noted the vast sum of wealth that is currently parked overseas, but what is not often talked about is that it appears to have grown substantially under Obama and repatriating that wealth would inject the equivalent of the combine market capitalization of the following companies into the U.S. economy:

Berkshire Hathaway Inc.                

Johnson & Johnson

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.             

General Electric Co              

Procter & Gamble Co.      

Coca-Cola Co

Pfizer Inc.

AT&T Inc.

An injection of $2 trillion into the U.S. economy has the potential for creating not just thousands of jobs, but millions of jobs, given that WalMart alone employs some 1.4 million Americans.

And unlike Obama’s stimulus, this is money American taxpayers won’t have to pay back – it already belongs to American corporations and their shareholders – such as you, your 401(k), mutual funds and other institutional investors.

Senator Paul justified his bold vision in terms that Republicans rarely talk about – “my trips to Detroit, to Appalachia, to Chicago have revealed what I call an undercurrent of unease.”

“It's time for a new way, a way predicated on justice, opportunity and freedom,” said Paul.

“Those of us who have enjoyed the American dream must break down the wall that separates us from the other America. I want all our children to have the same opportunities that I had. We need to stop limiting kids in poor neighborhoods to failing public schools and offer them school choice.”

The message that there is a nexus between freedom and opportunity, between breaking the bonds of the welfare state and freedom to choose is a powerful one and an important one if Republicans are to attract the blue collar and ethnic voters that Mitt Romney so cavalierly dismissed.

The symbolism of having J.C. Watts, a former congressman who's African-American; state Sen. Ralph Alvarado, who's Hispanic; local pastor Jerry Stephenson, who's African American and a former Democrat; and University of Kentucky student Lauren Bosler spoke volumes about the difference between Rand Paul and the Republican establishment, but the GOP primary math for Senator Paul makes the new coalition he is trying to build more of a hypothesis than a proven theory of how to win the Republican nomination for President.

As powerful as Senator Paul’s message of inclusion and the power of economic liberty is, it is untested as a formula for winning Republican primaries. While Rand Paul’s announcement was a welcome and much needed break from the 47% mentality with which Mitt Romney infected the GOP, to win, Senator Paul must now turn his stirring rhetoric into hard numbers of GOP primary voters and caucus-goers.

Click this link for the full text of Senator Rand Paul’s announcement speech courtesy of The Washington Post.

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