Rand Paul has had quite a week. In the past eight days, he won his Senate primary and was catapulted to the status of national Tea Party star...and within 24 hours of that win, he was knocked back down as it came to the attention of the national media that he opposes part of the Civil Rights Act and may or may not have voted for it, given the opportunity.
In an e-mail to supporters today, Paul accused his opponent, Kentucky AG Jack Conway and the national media of "lying" and "distorting" his views. Paul says he'll engage the media one outlet at a time, one question at a time.
His campaign "felt the attacks and lies of our opponent, the establishment media, and the entire Democratic power structure from Washington DC -- up to, and including, the White House," Paul write.
Here's the text of e-mail (bold is from the original), under the subject line "We've got their attention now":
It was the best of times, it was the worst of timesDear Friend,Well, that was an interesting week. As I noted at my Lion's Club meeting today, it was the best of times and the worst of times. We had a great victory last week, beating the establishment by over 20 points.But we also felt the attacks and lies of our opponent, the establishment media, and the entire Democratic power structure from Washington DC -- up to, and including, the White House.I guess we've got their attention now!My opponent and his allies in Washington are showing their true colors. They have spent days lying and distorting and generally trying to smear me with their attack machine.It's not going to work.My opponent is making something clear to everyone that I already knew --- he can't beat us in Kentucky in 2010 if he has to defend his record of support for President Obama's schemes like national healthcare, Cap and Trade, Card Check and bailouts. He is too far left for our state and is out of step with the mood of the country.So he's intent on changing what this race is about. We'll, I'm not going to let him do that.All this week and next, we'll be talking to the media and the people of Kentucky, one day at a time, one issue at a time. We're going to expose my opponent's out of step liberal agenda. We'll talk about his establishment friends and special interest money. And we'll make sure he knows he won't get away with making things up about me or my views.You were such a great help in the primary, ensuring I had the funds to win the race by a wide margin. We had all the funding we could have hoped for. But a smart campaign always runs like its 10 points down, which we did. Because of that, we are starting from scratch for the general election.That's why I'm asking you for your help today. My opponent has been out raising money and launching attacks. We need to keep up and fight back today.Please consider a donation for the general election today. It doesn't matter how much you gave in the primary -- you start over for the general election and can give the maximum again. Click here to make a donation.Of course, any amount you can give today would be greatly appreciated. And I hope you'll continue to help throughout this campaign.In Liberty,Rand Paul, MD
Chris Good is a political reporter for ABC News. He was previously an associate editor at The Atlantic and a reporter for The Hill.