Illustration: Mark Marturello/The Des Moines Register

PARTY: Republican

BORN: January 7, 1963 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Rand Paul

What he’s got: Built-in activist base; distinctive quasi-libertarian orientation; manifest intelligence and political agility; understanding of need to attract voters not currently part of the Republican coalition.

What he lacks: Thick skin to deal with criticism and tough questions from rivals and the press; hands-on foreign policy and/or management experience; a substantial record of legislative accomplishments.

Read Mark Halperin and John Heilemann’s Scouting Report

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Top Priorities

Rand’s Resumé

Highs

Watch This

Why Rand Paul Wants to Be President

Rand Paul explains how his “strong ideas” will appeal to both parties.

Lows

Don’t Miss

Head of Super-PAC Backing Rand Paul Indicted in Iowa Caucuses Campaign Scheme

Aug 5, 2015 2:53 PM ET

This New Ad for Rand Paul Has Everything, Including Fire-Breathing Eagles

May 29, 2015 10:01 AM ET

How Rand Paul Could Ride the Maharishi Effect to Victory

July 8, 2015 6:00 AM ET

He Once Said...

Did you know...

In college, Paul invented a deity named “Aqua Buddha” and was in a pseudo-frat that Baylor University called “lewd, crude, and grossly sacrilegious.”

Family

When he’s not running for office, Rand is...

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