Rand Paul Ain't Gonna Show Up At Your Fancy Farm No More
Senator Rand Paul announced this week that he won't attend Saturday's Fancy Farm picnic. My crack research staff uncovered that this isn't actually a picnic at a fancy farm but rather a picnic in the community of Fancy Farm, Kentucky, which has a population of 458. I'm not sure why anyone would expect a senator to show up for this, but apparently it's a big deal in local politics, attracting "10,000" visitors to "play bingo and munch barbecue." The Lexington Herald Leader even claimed there were "five things to watch" at this year's event.
This weekend, Western Kentucky will be overrun with politicians and the politically adjacent attending the 138th Annual Fancy Farm Picnic.
Hanging over the church fundraiser, which includes a political speaking event that is considered the annual kick-off to Kentucky's fall political season, are questions about the 2019 gubernatorial election. With only one candidate — Attorney General Andy Beshear — officially in the race, other potential candidates will be jockeying for support and attention in the political events surrounding the picnic.
Oh, those "five things" you should totally care about are Democrats running for governor; current Republican Governor Matt Bevin, who skipped last year and still hasn't RSVPed (tacky!); Republicans who might run if Bevin takes a pass; "Teacher Outrage," which is my favorite thrash metal band from the '80s; and Alison Lundergan Grimes, who unsuccessfully tried to unseat Senator Mitch McConnell in 2014.
(Because it was Kentucky, Grimes couldn't even state for the record whether she voted for Muslim terrorist Barack Obama.) McConnell is still a "maybe," but he usually shows up like the diva he is. That's good enough reason for Paul or anyone slightly chelonaphobic (look it up) to stay home in their underwear, but no, the junior senator for Kentucky will be taking his underwear to Russia.
Senator Rand Paul, who has carved out a spot as Donald Trump's "Russia wingman," is headed to Moscow this weekend to meet with Russian lawmakers, Reuters reported Thursday. Paul's goal on the trip, he wrote in a Politico piece published last month, is "to discuss common ground with their leaders and help prevent further, unnecessary escalation of tensions."
Paul's trip to Moscow comes one month after a group of senators visited the Russian capital and confronted their counterparts [CITATION NEEDED, NYMAG!], including Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, about the Kremlin's actions in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. But based on what he's said in the past, Paul appears to have little interest in taking the Russians to task.
Yeah, Paul literally said it was a "waste of time" to bother Russian president and Lollipop Guild member Vladimir Putin over his once and current attacks on our elections. "We all do it!" Paul claimed, which is what all mobsters say when shrugging off hits on their own people. No, Paul is not traveling 5,000 miles to deliver any "senator outrage" to Putin, who should expect more blue-eyed soul than thrash-metal fury.
Why do Republicans like Paul "keep forgetting" that Russia isn't our friend? They even give up the home court advantage and go to the Russians, as though they're "reporting for duty." As anyone will tell you, whoever does the traveling in the relationship is in the subordinate position. I took the crosstown bus a lot in the early days of dating my wife, but my studio apartment didn't even have a suitable outlet for her hairdryer.
After Donald Trump treasoned his way through Helsinki, McConnell tepidly advised Russia to cut out all that stuff that's worked in their favor or he'll totally turn this car around and go home. Russia has admitted to no wrongdoing so I don't know how we plan to convince them to stop doing what they claim they never did. Maybe Paul will at least negotiate for better Russian spies -- ones that will at least show us the courtesy of not admitting they're spies when they're drunk.
The last time Paul skipped the Fancy Farm fest was in 2015 when he was under the delusion he could be president. Ha! Remember when someone like "Senator Flat Tax" or his crazy racist dad was your crackpot candidate?
[Paul's] absence left him defenseless to the blunt barbs that Fancy Farm is known for.
"Rand, look at me …" implored program emcee Matt Jones, a popular local sports radio talk-show host. "You're not gonna win. You're not gonna win. The crazy people are voting for Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders … Just come on back and join us here in the state."
That's kind of a flimsy barb there, Mr. Jones. I'd choose a corn dog over your act any day and I'm not even running for president.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He's on the board of the Portland Playhouse theater and writes for the immersive theater Cafe Nordo in Seattle. Tickets are on sale now for his latest Nordo collaboration, "Curiouser and Curiouser," an adaptation of "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass." It promises to feel like an actual evening with SER (for good or for ill).