NBC’s Savannah Guthrie Challenges Sen. Rand Paul to Defend Open Mic Moment

Meet the Press substitute host Savannah Guthrie challenged Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) to explain his hot-mic moment from earlier this week, in which he was heard in a huddle with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) gloating that the Republicans were “winning” the fight over the government shutdown.

“Do all of you have any idea how totally disgusted American people are with these antics?” Guthrie asked, including in this verdict a quote from a White House source to the same respect.

“These are all legitimate concerns,” Paul said. “The root of the problem is we are not passing appropriation bills like we should. We have twelve different appropriation bills, we should pass them one at a time. Government should never shut down if we do our job appropriately.”

Guthrie asked if Paul thought the extremely unpopular decision to shutdown the government could enervate the GOP’s electoral chances in upcoming elections.

“It’s extremely bad for the president to shut down the government,” Paul continued, but conceded, “I think it’s bad for both parties, but the only way to get to a resolution is to negotiate. We’re willing to negotiate. We’re every day passing bills to repoen government and every day Harry Reid (D-NV) is vetoing every bill we send over…We’re the ones trying to open government, the Democrats are saying keep it closed. They like it being closed, they think they can beat up on us politically.”

“Why fall into the trap?” Guthrie asked. “If they think it’s hurting you more, and polls suggest perhaps it is, why are you allowing that to happen?”

“We think these things are important and worth fighting over,” Paul responded.

Watch the full clip below, via NBC News:

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