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Rand Paul Goes Viral

Sen. Rand Paul, Who Opposed Coronavirus Relief Bill, Tests Positive reads the headline at the Daily Beast. Paul, the only senator to vote against the $8.3 billion coronavirus research bill earlier this month, is the first senator to test positive for the virus.

It's not that Paul is opposed to research, per se. It's just that he's an ideological deficit hawk who doesn't believe in spending additional money without making cuts elsewhere. As he explained at the time of the vote:

Earlier today on the Senate floor, I said that while I support an all-hands-on-deck response to the coronavirus, we should cut out waste and take money from less urgent spending, such as what we are wasting overseas, to put into that response effort.

Rand Paul is an example of what psychologist Philip Tetlock would label a hedgehog. He knows one big thing—in his case, "debt is bad"—and bases all of his decisions around that one idea.

There are some who might claim it is admirable that Paul is able to stick to his principles even in the face of overwhelming opposition. But it's not admirable at all; it's just the opposite. In the throes of a global pandemic, the likes of which we haven't seen in any of our lifetimes, surely there are more important things to consider than a little deficit spending. How admirable can an ideology be if it doesn't rank human life and health above cash flow even at a time like this?

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