Rand Paul released a new ad today, and it’s truly a must-see—especially if you’re a fan of chainsaws, woodchippers, large bonfires, the national anthem, or tax reform.
Who am I kidding? Americans are fans of all those things!
Let’s get right to it:
At about the 37 second mark, the video turns interactive, asking viewers which method they believe Paul should use to lay waste to a paper copy of the tax code:
I picked “BURN IT,” because I’ve never been one to pass on a bonfire, and got kicked into this video:
Casual arson never looked so…free.
I love this ad for the same reason I love shooting big guns, or watching movies about killer robots from outer space—it’s fun. Somehow, Paul managed to incorporate ridiculous power tools, fire, and wanton destruction into a slick, polished ad that isn’t off-putting and still manages to convey a message.
The message is the thing, though, and Paul is serious about the one contained in his ad. Via WaPo:
So far, tax reform has failed to conquer the imaginations of Republican primary voters. The issue might have become a victim of Republican success, from the Reagan tax cuts of the 1980s to the Bush tax cuts that have largely survived the Obama presidency. As Mitt Romney infamously told a room of donors, 47 percent of Americans pay no net income tax. The only voters paying higher income taxes since 2003 are the ones hit by the 2010 tax deal’s hike on income over $400,000. The average American’s income tax rate is only 10.1 percent.
Paul acknowledged that he was trying to start a fire, not just fan the flames. “It may not be a big issue, but we want to make it a big issue,” he said, describing his outreach to poorer voters in big cities. “If I’m not for cutting taxes, what do I have to offer them? I can say I’m for capitalism, and lower regulations, and that’s going to float everybody’s boat, but that’s a little bit of a multi-step argument. Whereas if I tell them I’m going to leave $5 million in their economy, that it’s not going to Washington, I think they can grasp that.”
This is an important pitch. The past few weeks have been dominated by the antics of Donald Trump, the controversy over debate night pecking order, and the disaster that is the Iran nuclear deal. Tax cuts, while important, have taken a backseat in the minds of voters who have now (perhaps for the first election cycle in quite some time) found themselves focusing on foreign policy as a primary issue, as opposed to domestic concerns.
We haven’t seen much from Paul—or Rubio, or Cruz, or Bush, for that matter; at least not on this level. This ad is the freight train Paul needed to inject himself and his policy proposals back into the limelight, and it might just work.
What say you? Is Paul’s latest ad an effective hook, or over the top?DONATE
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