When a young undocumented immigrant marched up to conservative firebrand Rep. Steve King in Iowa and introduced herself as a Dreamer, Sen. Rand Paul put down his burger after taking one bite and literally fled the scene.
The awkward move — which lit up social media, made headlines and inspired gifs of his swift escape — represents the Kentucky Republican's consciousness of the power of immigration as a national issue as he lays the groundwork for a 2016 presidential run with staff hires and trips to key primary states.
The freshman senator is walking a very fine line between seeking not to alienate the country's fastest growing demographic, Hispanics, and keeping faith with the immigration-weary Republican base. He has been all over the map, from saying he's "for immigration reform" to voting against the Senate-passed bill in 2013 to voicing "sympathy" for Dreamers to supporting a potential path to citizenship while saying he doesn't actually support a "path to citizenship."
But that sort of obfuscation is normal for presidential candidates.
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