Rand Paul’s bipartisan strategy is workingSubmitted by ron_paul_is_awesome on Fri, 07/11/2014 - 12:14
by Andrew Prokop
July 11, 2014, 10:50 a.m. ET
On Tuesday, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) released a proposal for a wide-ranging criminal justice reform bill — authored with Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ). The response focused as much on the coauthors as it did on the bill, with commentators marveling at the bipartisan "bromance" between the two men.
Yet, for Paul, this is nothing new. While Congress is becoming more dysfunctional than ever, Paul has, again and again, crossed party lines to try and get things done. On a range of important issues — from surveillance reform, to highway funding, to combating sexual assault in the military, he's been eager to work with liberal Democrats.
Paul's efforts to cross party lines have earned him one prominent fan — Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. "I really like the guy. I just like him as a person," Reid said to a group of reporters, including Vox, on Wednesday. When Paul first joined the Senate, Reid thought he "was the new Jesse Helms. But he's just a super nice guy."
In recent weeks, Congress has been trying to reach a deal on how to pay for the Highway Trust Fund. Instead of posturing or finger-pointing, Paul worked with Reid to find a solution. He proposed paying for the measure by letting multinational corporations bring their overseas profits back home in exchange for a tax deduction — the proposal, referred to as repatriation, is estimated to raise $20 billion in revenue. The idea didn't work, but Reid was impressed that Paul engaged. "I have spent hours with him on repatriation," the majority leader says. "My caucus doesn't think repatriation is the way to fund the highway bill, but at least Rand Paul is trying to come up with something constructive."