GOP

Sen. Paul, Republicans Rallying Behind 'Religious Liberty'

Sep 26, 2014

Leading Republicans are rallying around "religious liberty" at home and abroad as religious activists gather for a weekend conference.

The annual Voters Value Summit begins Friday in Washington with speeches from several prospective presidential candidates. The lineup includes Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

Organizers expect participants to unite around what they call President Barack Obama's attack on religious liberty, instead of focusing on divisive social issues.

The intraparty debate over social issues has broad implications on the GOP's struggle to improve its brand ahead of the November elections and the 2016 presidential contest. The Republican National Committee released an internal audit last year calling for party leaders to be more "inclusive and welcoming" on social issues.

Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell is more than a little aggravated with the Senate Conservatives Fund, and who can blame him.

The youngish but well-financed Tea Party organization has targeted McConnell, a five-termer from Kentucky and highest-ranking Senate Republican, by helping to bankroll a primary challenger and using the race as an intraparty, us vs. them proxy.

Senator Rand Paul says his party needs to break away from its base when it comes to war. In the past, politicians have had a tough time breaking from the base to change party opinion. Think Bill Clinton and welfare reforms.

NPR and other news outlets are reporing that Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan is Mitt Romney's choice as running mate on the 2012 Republican presidential ticket.

Official word of the choice, which began leaking overnight, came early this morning from the Romney campaign via a smartphone app and a news release.

Mitt Romney swept the Kentucky and Arkansas Republican presidential primaries Tuesday, inching closer to the GOP nomination he is certain to win. With no serious opposition left, the former Massachusetts governor easily won both contests. He won all 42 delegates at stake in Kentucky and at least 31 of the 33 delegates at stake in Arkansas.

Rick Santorum says he is "suspending" his presidential campaign. At a news conference this afternoon in Gettysburg, the former Pennsylvania Senator said his White House run "is over for me." Today's move all but ensures Mitt Romney will become the GOP contender against President Obama this fall. NPR will have details about Santorum's move and the fallout in upcoming newscasts, and during All Things Considered, from 3-6pm central time.