Rand Paul rises, Jeb Bush jockeys: a big week for possible 2016 contenders (+video)(Read article summary)
It was a week of serious maneuvering for Sen. Rand Paul, former Gov. Jeb Bush, and the others who could be presidential contenders in 2016. Who helped or hurt themselves the most?
The 2016 presidential race may be a long way off – but, as NBC's First Read notes, there was a striking amount of maneuvering among potential candidates this past week. While Sen. Rand Paul (R) of Kentucky probably "won" the week with his now-famous filibuster, he wasn't the only one who may have helped himself in the run-up to the 2016 campaign.
Here's a look at some of the possible contenders jockeying for position, and how they may have scrambled the race:
The junior senator from Kentucky set the rest of the field on notice that he is a force to be reckoned with by staging an old-fashioned talking filibuster, protesting the Obama administration's drone policy. Critics called it a political "stunt," but as stunts go, this one clearly worked. On a snow day when little else was going on, the unexpected spectacle of a legislator embracing physical discomfort to make a point drew unabashed praise from partisans on both the right and the left, and it put Senator Paul squarely in the media spotlight.
He earned a piece in Thursday's Politico saying that he was now in "the top tier of Republican power players" – and Paul himself "confidently" acknowledged that he was seriously considering a White House run.
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