Rand Paul Calls For Sequester And Immigration Reform In Tea Party Response To SOTU

Paul gives the second and less official of two Republican responses to the State of the Union.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

Senate Foreign Relations member Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky. questions Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 24, 2013, during Kerry’s confirmation hearing before the committee to replace Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. (AP Photo/J.

Rand Paul is supporting the idea of sequester, embracing immigration reform, and calling for a balanced budget amendment in the Tea Party address to the State of the Union on Tuesday. The speech, which Paul is delivering after the official Republican response given by Senator Marco Rubio, goes further to position Paul as the conservative-libertarian option in 2016.

“Not only should the sequester stand, many pundits say the sequester really needs to be at least $4 trillion to avoid another downgrade of America’s credit rating,” Paul says in his speech, according to prepared remarks sent by his office. “Both parties will have to agree to cut, or we will never fix our fiscal mess.”

Paul’s address is carefully outsider-y, slamming lawmakers on both sides for inefficiency and waste.

“Demand Washington change their ways, or be sent home,” Paul says. “To begin with, we absolutely must pass a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution!”

The balanced budget amendment is something that Rubio, around whom speculation of a presidential run swirls, also called for in his speech. Paul promises to announce a five-year balanced budget plan next month.

Paul is supporting being more accepting of immigrants in his speech, saying “We are the party that embraces hard work and ingenuity, therefore we must be the party that embraces the immigrant who wants to come to America for a better future.”

“We must be the party who sees immigrants as assets, not liabilities.”

The speech also touches on Paul’s foreign policy stances, demanding the stoppage of arms sales to Egypt and “ending all foreign aid to countries that are burning our flag and chanting death to America.”

In the speech, Paul hits a few of the Tea Party’s favorite subjects, like school choice and preventing tax hikes.

He also has some choice words for the President on gun control and the civil liberties: “We cannot and will not allow any President to act as if he were a king. We will not let any President use executive orders to impinge on the Second Amendment. We will not tolerate secret lists of American citizens who can be killed without trial.”

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