Rand Paul Plagiarized Several Sections Of 2012 Book 'Government Bullies': Report

11/07/2013 01:47 pm ET | Updated Nov 07, 2013

WASHINGTON -- The plagiarism charges against Sen. Rand Paul continued to pour in Thursday, as BuzzFeed uncovered evidence that more sections of the Kentucky Republican's 2012 book Government Bullies were lifted from scholars at think tanks.

BuzzFeed's Andrew Kaczynski revealed four passages from Paul's book that appear to be copied verbatim from an article in Regulation, the Cato Institute’s quarterly journal, published in January 2012 by Timothy Sandefur of the Pacific Legal Foundation.

BuzzFeed did a side-by-side comparison of Sandefur's article and excerpts of Paul's book:

Here’s how Sandefur wrote it:

But rather than applying a more skeptical eye to these autonomous entities, courts generally take a deferential attitude, allowing the agencies to act as they will, except in the most extreme cases.

Here’s how Paul wrote the section:
Rather than applying a more skeptical eye to autonomous entities such as the EPA, courts generally take a deferential attitude, allowing the agencies to act as they please, except in the most extreme cases.

Another example is given for a 2010 piece penned by Jonathan Adler for Environmental Protection:

Here’s how Alder wrote his article on John Rapanos, who also entangled with the EPA over disputed wetlands:

Rapanos was not a revolutionary decision, but a logical sequel to SWANCC. In Rapanos the Supreme Court reaffirmed the existence of both statutory and constitutional limits on the scope of federal regulatory jurisdiction over private lands and waters. The Court rejected the Army Corps and [EPA]’s expansive interpretation of their own authority, and reaffirmed that federal regulatory authority only extends to those wetlands that have a “significant nexus” to navigable waters of the United States.

And here’s how Paul wrote it:
The state of property rights in the aftermath of Rapanos v. United States was not a sea change, but rather a logical sequel to SWANCC. In the Rapanos decision, the Supreme Court reaffirmed the existence of both statutory and constitutional limits on the scope of federal regulatory jurisdiction over private lands and waters. The Supreme Court rejected the EPA and the Army Corps’ expansive interpretation of their own authority, and reiterated that federal regulatory authority only extends to those wetlands that have “significant nexus” to navigable waters of the United States.

This is the third time Kaczynski has disclosed instances of plagiarism by Paul, after MSNBC's Rachel Maddow first reported last week that Paul had taken material from the Wikipedia page for the 1997 film "Gattaca" for his campaign speech in favor of former Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli. Kaczynski reported for Buzzfeed the following day that Paul also lifted parts of the "Stand and Deliver" Wikipedia page for a prior speech on immigration. And earlier this week, Kaczynski found that one of Paul's weekly columns for The Washington Times, on drug sentencing, contained several paragraphs copied from an op-ed in The Week.

The Washington Times later announced later that the newspaper and Paul had "mutually agreed" to end his weekly column. On Wednesday, the conservative website Breitbart News announced it would be the new host of Paul's weekly op-eds.

Kaczynski points out that Paul's book had citations, with his footnotes containing (printed) web links to the original sources, but he did not quote, or appropriately paraphrase, the sources in text. Adler told BuzzFeed that while it's "gratifying" to be cited by policymakers, "Quotes would be nice, and it’s unfortunate that Sen. Paul’s staff was not more careful."

He added, "Sen. Paul is hardly the first politician to appropriate the words of others without following proper citation conventions, and he will not be the last."

Paul, for his part, has so far offered only a minimal apology for what he referred to as "errors of omission." He announced Tuesday that his staff would implement fixes to their citation process, but he has not fired any staffers for the repeated bouts of plagiarism.

If anything, Paul blamed the media for its coverage of the ordeal and said he would have failed most reporters if he were their journalism professor.

"It annoys the hell out of me," Paul told National Review on Wednesday. "I feel like if I could just go to detention after school for a couple days, then everything would be okay. But do I have to be in detention for the rest of my career?"

These allegations don't bode well for Paul, who is widely expected to seek the Republican Party's nomination for president in 2016.

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