Rand Paul’s Kentucky problem still remains after 2014
As mentioned previously, the law in Kentucky forbids a candidate’s name from appearing more than once on the ballot. In the case of Senator Rand Paul, this means he would not be able to simultaneously run for Senate and the Presidency in 2016 since he cannot be on the ballot for both positions. Paul had been attempting to entice state law makers to change to the law but the 2014 midterm elections left the Kentucky House of Delegates firmly in Democratic hands. As such, there will likely be no change to this law leading up to 2016.
Report from NPR:
Everyone knows Sen. Mitch McConnell had a great election night in Kentucky last week. As for the state’s other Republican senator, Rand Paul, that’s a different matter.
That’s because while McConnell was cruising to a big re-election win on his way to becoming Senate majority leader, things did not go so well for Paul. He was hoping Republicans, who already control the Kentucky Senate, would also take over the state House — a result that would grease the path for a state law allowing him to run for both re-election and the presidency at the same time.
But that failed to happen. And the Democrats who are still in charge of the state House are disinclined to pass a law to help Paul.
Kentucky’s Democratic House speaker Greg Stumbo refused to take up the two-ballot-spots-at-once bill earlier this year because it was designed for a single person, in violation of Kentucky’s constitution. “There’s only one guy who’s talking about holding onto his Senate seat and also running for United States president,” he told NPR.
The only chance Paul has to avoid withdrawing from one of office to pursue the other could be a timetable change in the Republican primary calendar:
The deadline for House and Senate candidates in Kentucky is Jan. 26 — six days before the Iowa caucuses, according to the Republican National Committee schedule.
January 26 is too early to know if Paul has momentum to become the GOP nominee meaning he still has to decide which office he wishes to pursue in 2016. Given the steps he’s been taking, I think we can safely assume which direction he’s heading.