Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) defended his latest attack on Donald Trump on Wednesday — a Facebook post comparing the Republican front-runner to Gollum, the disturbed creature that hounded Frodo Baggins in The Lord of the Rings.
“Gollum was after his ‘Precious,’ his little ring, the Ring of Power,” Paul told CNN host Jake Tapper. “To him, power was really important to be an obsession. And I think Donald Trump, in some ways, represents that in the sense that ‘He’s so smart, he’s so rich, if you just give him power he’s gonna fix everything.’ But you know, I come from the limited-government tradition. Really, we harken back to the plains of Runnymede, to the barons challenging the king.”
Because of that philosophy, the Tea Party presidential candidate argued, he believed that power corrupts.
“We don’t want a strong leader,” he continued, adding, “I want the presidency to have power taken away from it.”
Paul first likened the real estate mogul to the villain on his Facebook page on Tuesday, writing that he was the only candidate not seeking “power or dominion” over voters.
“This race should not be about who can grasp the ring. Electing Gollum should not be our objective,” the senator wrote. “This race should be about which candidate will best protect you from an overbearing government.”
A CNN poll released on Wednesday shows the senator in a three-way tie for fourth among likely New Hampshire Republican voters.
But Paul argued that other surveys have shown him amassing about as many supporters as his father, former Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) — yet the elder Paul went on to win 20 percent of the vote in past Iowa primaries.
“We think that the pollsters aren’t finding my dad’s voters, aren’t finding our voters,” the Kentucky legislator said. “Many of our voters are young. They have cell phones, they don’t show up in surveys. And many of our people are just, I think, outside the normal traditional Republican voter.”
Watch the interview, as aired on Wednesday, below.