Rand Paul will host a fund raising event for GOP state senate candidate Jimmy Higdon in Bardstown on November 30th. Higdon is the party's chosen candidate designated to run in the special election to replace Dan Kelly in the 14th Senate district. Kelly resigned his seat and was appointed as Circuit Judge by Governor Beshear.
While many think that Beshear is short sighted enough to use his appointment powers to erode the GOP majority in the state Senate in order to advance his gambling agenda, in point of fact a much bigger issue is at stake for republicans.
With a new census next year the legislature will take up the issue of re-districting. In Kelly's old district only a balance of power in the Kentucky Legislature can prevent the potential harm to at least one of Kentucky's current republican votes in Congress, Brett Guthrie, who holds the seat vacated by Ron Lewis.
In addition, re-drawing the lines could put Ed Whitfield in jeopardy if the democrats controlled both the house and the Senate.
I'm sure that Rand Paul's decision to help Higdon is also intended to demonstrate to republicans across the Commonwealth that Paul is a "team player", supporting the party faithful's chosen candidate and perhaps helping to bring on board what has turned out to be Paul's very successful fund raising skills for his own campaign.
Paul's front runner status continues to attract attention. And now the timing of his recently announced meeting with Mitch McConnell coupled with this "party building" effort in support of Jimmy Higdon suggests that perhaps the time has come to stop underestimating the skill of the Paul campaign.