Rand Paul, son of Texas Congressman and former presidential candidate Ron Paul, said he is "very serious" about running for Republican Sen. Jim Bunning's seat in Kentucky next year.
The 46-year-old ophthalmologist, who lives in Bowling Green, Ky., told CNN: "I am very serious about running for Senator Bunning's seat if he decides not to run. Until he makes a final pronouncement, I'm trying not to do anything formally but I'm very close to making a decision."
Like his father, Rand Paul favors limited government and said "libertarian would be a good description" of his views, "because libertarians believe in freedom in all aspects of your life — your economic life as well as your social life as well as your personal life."
He called the bank bailout "a huge mistake," and said the U.S. government should not be buying stock in any industry.
The younger Paul said that if he decides to run, he plans on tapping the network of supporters that backed his father's 2008 White House run.
Bunning spokesman Mike Reynard told CNN that the senator plans to seek re-election next year.
But Baseball Hall of Famer Bunning, at 77 the oldest Republican in the Senate, won re-election in 2004 by just over one percentage point, and his approval rating stood at just 28 percent in April.
Kentucky GOP Secretary of State Trey Grayson announced on April 30 that he would form an exploratory committee to run for Bunning’s seat.
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