Salon exclusive: More Rand Paul plagiarism

UPDATED! Salon exclusive: In two 2013 speeches, Paul borrowed from a conservative think-tank without attribution

Topics: Rand Paul, Plagiarism, Value Voters Summit, Editor's Picks, BuzzFeed, Rachel Maddow, Salon Rand Paul,

Salon exclusive: More Rand Paul plagiarismSen. Rand Paul (Credit: AP/Reed Saxon)

Salon has discovered more examples of plagiarism in the work of Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.).

In his speech at the Value Voters Summit on October 11, Paul appropriated written material from the Gatestone Institute, a think-tank chaired by John Bolton.

The transcript of the speech has been removed from Paul’s web site – as have the transcripts from numerous other speeches while Paul battles an ongoing plagiarism scandal –  but it can be found using Google cache.

Paul’s speech draws — without attribution — from two Gatestone Institute articles, “The Degradation of Christian Women Under Islam,” published on September 11, 2013 , and “Muslim Persecution of Christians,” published on April 18th.

While several elements of Paul’s speech were taken word for word from Gatestone, in other cases a single word or two was changed or added. Paul did not attribute Gatestone’s writing or research anywhere in the speech, as it was originally posted on his web site.

This new discovery follows other examples of plagiarism in Paul’s work, reported by Buzzfeed and MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, including his book, his Washington Times column and other speeches.

Example one

Gatestone Institute:

Iran: Fox News reported that American pastor Saeed Abedini, who is jailed for his Christian faith in the notorious Evin prison, was “facing physical and psychological torture at the hands of captors, who demanded that he renounce his beliefs.”

Paul’s speech:



In Iran, American pastor Saeed Abedini has been imprisoned indefinitely, facing physical and psychological torture at the hands of his captors who have demanded that he renounce his faith.

Example two

Gatestone Institute

Benghazi forces raided another Coptic church—rounding up some 100 Coptic Christians and accusing them of being missionaries—simply because they had Bibles and other Christian “paraphernalia,” such as icons of Jesus. Many of these Christians were detained and tortured, including by having their heads shaved and cross tattoos removed with acid. Under such torture, one Copt died.

Paul’s speech

Benghazi militias raided a Christian church — rounding up over a hundred Christians, accusing them of being missionaries because they possessed Bibles and crosses. Many were tortured and one Christian died while being tortured.

Example three

Gatestone Institute:

Motorbike assailants hurled an explosive device into the Earthquake Miracle Ministries Church in Mrima village church … injuring 15 people, including one pastor who had both his legs broken.

Paul’s speech:

In Kenya, motorcycle assailants hurled bombs into a Christian church injuring 15 people including the pastor who had both of his legs broken.

UPDATED, 2:30 p.m.

Salon has found another example of Paul plagiarizing the work of the Gatestone Institute, this time in June in front of the Faith and Freedom Coalition. This speech remains on his web site as of this moment.

From the Gatestone Institute’s “Muslim Persecution of Christians, August 2012,” posted on October 4, 2012:

Iraq: What Carl Moeller, president of Open Doors, characterized as “religicide,” continues unabated in the nation that was liberated by U.S. forces a decade ago: “Christians in cities like Baghdad and Mosul are gripped by terrorism. They are fleeing in droves. Today [August 16] it was reported that at least 20 people died in blasts and shootings across the country.” Before the toppling of Saddam Hussein, Mosul was home to some 75,000 Christians, but now the number has dropped to around 25,000. Christian homes are set on fire, bombs placed in their cars; other Christian families are receiving letters threatening them to leave Iraq or be kidnapped or killed.

Paul’s speech at the Faith and Freedom Coalition, June 13, 2013:

Christians in Iraq are the subjects of what Carl Moeller, president of Open Doors, describes as “religicide.”

Before the toppling of Saddam Hussein, Mosul, a city in Iraq, was home to some 75,000 Christians, but now the number has dropped to around 25,000.

Christian homes are set on fire, bombs are being placed in their cars and Christian families are receiving letters threatening them to leave Iraq or be kidnapped or killed.

Sean McElwee is a writer and researcher of public policy. His writing may be viewed at seanamcelwee.com. Follow him on Twitter at @seanmcelwee.

Jenny Kutner

Jenny Kutner is an assistant editor at Salon, focusing on sex, gender and feminism. Follow @jennykutner or email jkutner@salon.com.

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