The Lexington Herald-Leader points out that an upcoming Rand Paul fundraiser seemingly violates a pledge the Senate candidate made during the primary.

When Kentucky Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul is feted at a ritzy Washington fund-raiser later this month, he’ll be voiding a promise made last year to shun money from lawmakers who supported government bank bailouts.

Paul, a favored son of the Tea Party movement, pledged on August 31, 2009, to reject campaign contributions from any U.S. senator who voted for a bank-industry bailout last year and challenged his opponents in the primary election to do the same.

The Bowling Green eye surgeon issued the challenge after learning that his key Republican opponent, Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson, was slated to attend a Washington fund-raiser co-sponsored by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and several other senators who voted for the controversial bailout in 2008.

The paper goes on to credit left-leaning blog Barefoot and Progressive for noticing the pledge is no longer on Paul’s website.

Paul’s campaign tells the newspaper that Paul is attempting to build unity in the party, and the story notes that the change could have been predicted.

On Monday, Paul’s campaign operatives focused on his attempts to mend the libertarian-leaning candidates relationships with establishment Republicans.

Paul “has said many times that his first call after the primary would be to Mitch McConnell,” said campaign chairman David Adams, adding that Paul realizes he’ll need the support of various factions within the party.

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Paul’s about-face is typical of the realities candidates that run on anti-establishment platforms face when seeking higher office, said Larry Sabato, a political analyst at the University of Virginia.

“He’s coming to terms with the fact that establishment Republicans have serious doubts about him and he needs them,” Sabato said. “He’ll lose in the general unless he unites the mainstream Republicans and the tea party people.”


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