Influencer Spotlight: Will Paul's presidential buzz affect Ky. tea party candidate for governor?

03/29/2011 06:26 PM

Kentucky’s freshman Sen. Rand Paul announced last week that he would unveil a plan aimed at revamping Social Security to make it more financially stable.

He also fueled speculation that he might jump in the Republican primary for president — if his dad, Texas Congressman Ron Paul, didn’t.

The headlines that generated alone might have been enough to land Paul in the “Influencer Spotlight” segment for this week. But his admission that he’s considering a run for the White House also could have an affect on this spring’s Republican primary in Kentucky for governor.

Here is this week’s “Influencer Spotlight” segment, which first aired on Monday night’s show:

Phil Moffett, who announced for governor last summer as the tea party candidate in the GOP primary, has been seeking to tap into the same base that energized and legitimized Paul’s upstart campaign for Senate in the fall of 2009.

But so far, the support hasn’t manifested itself in the form of donations for Moffett the way it did for Paul.

Now the question is: Will the prospect of a Paul presidential campaign prompt those same supporters to hold their enthusiasm and cash for 2012 instead of giving Moffett a look?

The most active tea party Web sites — such as the Liberty Forest — have been stuffed with comments from people much more interested in following the developments of the Pauls then looking at the Kentucky governor’s race.


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