PolitiFact: Rand Paul’s Denial He Ever Backed Cutting Israel Aid ‘Pants on Fire’


Senator Rand Paul has come under fire this week for what looked like a flip-flop on his position on giving foreign aid to Israel. Paul has strongly, adamantly denied he ever said he’d cut off aid to Israel, but now the fact-checking side PolitiFact has weighed in and given Paul its “Pants on Fire” claim.

Back in 2011, Paul said in a CNN interview that he wants to cut all foreign aid. When specifically pressed on whether that includes Israel, he said yes. Paul defended himself this week by insisting he 1) never specifically targeted Israel, and 2) never proposed legislation that would end foreign aid to Israel.

Paul’s gotten some flak for this apparent flip-flop on not just MSNBC, but Fox News as well, and PolitiFact piled on today.

Back in 2011, when Paul was just settling into the Senate, he proposed a budget that was more fiscally conservative than the proposals offered by his Republican contemporaries. In a bid to cut $500 billion from the federal budget, Paul proposed a spending outline that would have eliminated foreign aid entirely.

Paul’s cuts weren’t targeted at Israel specifically, which gets about $3 billion a year from the United States, mostly in military assistance. But by cutting all aid to foreign countries, Paul’s proposal would have zeroed out Israel’s aid.

Paul is free to change his position, but saying he never held the position in the first place is flatly contradicted by his past statements and documents. We rate the claim Pants on Fire.

[image via screengrab]

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Josh Feldman is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: josh@mediaite.com Follow him on Twitter: @feldmaniac