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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Rand Paul Uses a Fake Lincoln Quotation

Rand Paul likes to use a certain Lincoln quotation.  Breitbart recently reported on the senator's New Hampshire campaign stop:
Earlier, during his remarks, Paul hammered Obama on his use of executive authority. “[Abraham] Lincoln wrote that any man can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power,” Paul said. “I think this president has failed that test at every turn because this president has said that ‘oh, well, Democracy is messy and Congress won’t give me what I want.’
Senator Paul has used that Lincoln line on Twitter, on Facebook, in The Washington Times, and in many other venues.

One problem: Lincoln never said that.  

It seems to have started in a 1909 book by Allen Thorndike Rice. If you read the book (p. 427), you see that the line is an observation about Lincoln, not a quotation of Lincoln. Somewhere along the line, a sloppy researcher apparently mixed up the two things.  And a sloppy Rand Paul ghostwriter did not bother to check.