Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) apparently thinks that only his state of Kentucky deserves federal emergency aid in the aftermath of a devastating tornado because he has repeatedly voted against such aid for other states that have suffered similar disasters.
The rare tornado ripped across approximately 250 miles over four states, which would be a record if confirmed, beating the previous mark set by the Tri-State tornado in 1925. At least 70 people were killed by the storm in Kentucky. Of course, Paul begged for aid in a letter sent to President Joe Biden.
“Last night and early this morning devastating storms swept across multiple states, including Kentucky,’ Paul wrote. “A single tornado from that system may have been on the ground for over 200 miles, and a large swath of the Commonwealth has been severely hit. As the sun comes up this morning we will begin to understand the true scope of the devastation, but we already know of loss of life and severe property damage.”
“The governor of the Commonwealth has requested federal assistance this morning, and certainly further requests will be coming as the situation is assessed,” Paul continued. “I fully support those requests and ask that you move expeditiously to approve the appropriate resources for our state.”
It would be understandable for any lawmaker to request federal aid for their state after such a disaster. But Rand Paul has a lot of nerve to ask for it after he has repeatedly voted against sending disaster relief to other states. He has voted against hurricane relief funding on multiple occasions. In addition, Paul voted against disaster relief for California in the wake of devastating wildfires.
It should also be pointed out that Paul has frequently railed against the federal government and federal spending, but because Kentucky got hit by a tornado he now wants the government to come to the rescue. It’s a special kind of hypocrisy that should have consequences. While giving aid to Kentuckians would normally be the right thing to do, Republicans like Paul who vote against disaster relief for other states in their time of need should have their own requests for relief denied.
No doubt, Paul will go back to Kentucky and claim that he successfully lobbied Biden to get disaster relief. He’ll try to take credit and Kentucky will just keep sending him back to Congress as if he did something special even though he did no such thing. But denying Kentucky aid and blaming Paul because of his votes against disaster relief for other states would send a message to those same voters that Paul is no longer useful for Kentucky because he refuses to help other Americans in need.
After all, Paul is always telling suffering Americans to pick themselves up by their bootstraps and take personal responsibility. He’s always demanding the federal government curb spending. These stances should finally backfire against him, especially since Kentucky is a welfare state that already takes in more federal tax dollars than it pays. Kentucky, by all rights, should not get federal aid. But the state will get it anyway, not because of Paul, but because Biden and the Democrats won’t abandon red states the way Republicans have repeatedly abandoned blue states.
Featured Image: Screenshot