RNC: Rand Paul 'tip of the spear' to prod the GOP

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky

Story highlights

  • Rand Paul repeats his claim that the GOP's brand 'sucks,' adding 'we aren't the cool club'
  • His comments came on a call with College Republicans hosted by RNC chairman Reince Priebus
  • Priebus called Paul 'a real tip of the spear when it comes to challenging our party about growth'
A day after Rand Paul said the Republican Party's brand "sucks," the chairman of the Republican National Committee politely described the first-term senator as someone who's "a real tip of the spear when it comes to challenging our party about growth."
Reince Priebus made the comment Thursday evening while co-hosting a conference call with Paul to College Republicans, according to a post by Red Alert Politics that was tweeted out by Priebus.
"Our brand does suck," Paul said on the call, stressing a need to expand the party's base. "We aren't the cool club, we're the club that seems to be against everything."
He said Republicans are starting to head in the right direction and added the GOP's leaders were not to blame for the party's optics problems that have accumulated over time.
For his part, Priebus stressed that students are the "future" of the Republican Party, adding that the GOP plans to be "focused like a laser" on reaching out to young people in the coming years.
It's part of the RNC's overall rebranding effort to expand its base and appeal to more women, young people and minorities.
Sean Spicer, an RNC spokesman, responded to Paul's "sucks" remark earlier Thursday, saying on MSNBC that the Republican Party has "a ways to go" to expand its base, but argued that it's trying.
"We're taking a conservative message to places we haven't gone in the past, and I think it's going to pay dividends in the long run," he said.