Tags: Trump Administration | Exclusive Interviews | GOP2016 | Rand Paul | Steve Malzberg Show | Kelley Paul | Rand Paul

Kelley Paul to Newsmax: My Husband, Rand, Has No Issues With Women

By    |   Wednesday, 15 Apr 2015 12:56 PM

Rand Paul's wife is setting the record straight: her husband has absolutely no problem with women. Zero. Zilch.

Anybody who says he does just doesn't know the Kentucky senator and longtime ophthalmologist, Kelley Paul said in an interview with Steve Malzberg on Newsmax TV.

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Last week, Rand Paul — the second Republican lawmaker to throw his hat into the ring for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination — was accused of having a problem with women after tussling with Savannah Guthrie over his foreign policy views on NBC's "Today" show.

"One thing people probably don't know about Rand is that his entire professional career is working with female surgeons," Kelley Rand said.

"His partner, long-time partner, more than a decade in his ophthalmology practice, was a female surgeon, extremely accomplished, prominent female surgeon.

"They had a fantastic partnership and working relationship together. Now she's one of his biggest political supporters and is a great friend."

Also, Rand Paul routinely performs pro bono surgery with another female eye surgeon with whom he has a "great relationship," Kelley Paul said.

"So, I mean, I see that and think, they don't really know Rand. Obviously he has a great relationship with women."

In his interview with Guthrie, Paul accused her of talking over him and editorializing after she aggressively grilled him about his purportedly changing views on Iran and foreign aid for Israel.

"Why don't you let me explain instead of talking over me?" Paul told Guthrie. "Before we go through a litany of things you say I changed on, why don't you ask me a question: Have you changed your opinion?' That would be a better way to approach an interview. No, no, no, no, listen. You editorialized."

Kelley Paul — author of the new book "True and Constant Friends: Love and Inspiration from Our Grandmothers, Mothers, and Friends," published by Center Street — said she tries not let the false claims about her husband make her angry.

"I try not to. It's way too early in the game to do that. If I'm getting angry this soon, we're in trouble. I just try to keep my eye on the ball," she said.

"I know that we're going to hit a lot of bumps and we both have a lot to learn through this experience."

Asked by Malzberg if her husband should "tone it down" a bit, Kelley Paul responded:

"In politics, there is sort of a learning curve in terms of how you present yourself, and it is sometimes difficult for anyone when they feel like maybe their idea's being misrepresented and they're not getting their message out.

"I'm sure that it's something that he'll get better at. I don't know … the more I do this, the more I understand how hard it is, and so I'm probably a little easier on him.

"There have been times he's come home and I've been like, why did you say that? Or why didn't you say that? And now that I'm doing some of it, I realize it's really hard."

Kelley Paul says, however, that Rand Paul may have a tougher time getting into the White House than he did his Senate seat.

"I'm not quite as confident on this one, to tell you the truth. This is a huge, daunting undertaking," she said.

"There's no doubt that Rand is making a big difference in the Senate and he has a lot of good things to say and a lot of good ideas. So, we'll see."

Kelley's book celebrates the lifelong friendships she made with six women at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee, in the early 1980s. She tells their stories and those of their grandmothers, mothers and sisters, providing a microcosm of women raising families and building lives in 20th- and 21st-century America.

"The inspiration … [for the book] was my grandmother and actually, politics. Two years ago I was asked to give a speech to a Republican women's group and I decided I just didn't want to do the typical echo chamber politics," she said.

"I wanted to talk about someone that embodied the American Dream for me, and that's my grandmother. She had amazing optimism, incredible work ethic, [and was] very brave … leaving terrible poverty in Ireland and coming to this country at 19.

"So, I wrote a speech about her, and people would come up to me afterwards, and the reactions were very similar. People – men and women – would start telling me stories about their grandmothers or someone in their life that had been like my grandmother.''

It made her realize the power of oral tradition in people's lives, the kind of kitchen-table stories passed from generation to generation, and she decided to explore it with her six college friends.

"Six close friends that I've been friends with for 33 years … all very different ... It's kind of extraordinary, really, the range of stories just between the seven of us going back one generation or two generations, the experiences that our mothers and grandmothers have had," she said.

"It was like going back in time with them and really getting to see who inspired them as a young girl or as a child … It's a very, very personal book for me. I mean, anyone who reads it will see that."

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Rand Paul's wife is setting the record straight — her husband has absolutely no problem with women.
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