Rand Paul on Saturday attacked Hillary Clinton, the only declared Democratic candidate for president so far, over her record as secretary of state under Barack Obama, her use of a private email server while in that job and the human rights records of some donors to her charitable foundation.
The Kentucky senator also asked Republicans to help him take the party’s message to “new people… rich, poor, black, white, brown” as he campaigns for the presidential nomination in 2016.
Speaking in Nashua, New Hampshire, at the Republican Leadership Summit – where most of the declared and potential GOP candidates for president were scheduled to speak on Friday and Saturday – the libertarian-tinged candidate largely focused on foreign policy, an area in which he has been vulnerable to attack over his supposedly isolationist stance.
He named radical Islam as the enemy of the US and focused again on the Benghazi attacks of 2012 and Clinton’s role in the US response.
“Libya was a mistake,” he said, referring the Obama administration’s military support of rebels who toppled Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. “One thing that is probably true in the Middle East: every time we have toppled a secular dictator, a secular strong man, we’ve gotten chaos and the rise of radical Islam. If we want to defend our country, we have to know the enemy and we have to name the enemy.