According to Senator Rand Paul’s wife, the Kentucky Republican has not taken a pain-free breath since November 3. In a commentary piece that appeared on CNN, Kelley Paul reports that Paul is afflicted by painful sleep, interrupted by “long periods of difficult breathing or excruciating coughing.”
On November 3, Paul was assaulted on his front lawn in Bowling Green, Kentucky. The Kentucky State Police arrested 59-year-old Rene Albert Boucher for the assault. Later, it was revealed that Boucher was one of Paul’s neighbors. Reports said Sen. Paul sustained minor injuries, including 6 broken ribs and 3 displaced fractures, pleural effusion and pneumonia.
As to why he attacked his neighbor, Boucher, a local anesthesiologist, suggested through his lawyer that the two neighbors had a verbal exchange revolving around lawn clippings, his allegations implying Paul was a negligent landscaper. But according to other neighbors, Boucher was aggressively anti-Trump, and they wondered if the attack was politically motivated.
In her commentary, Kelley Paul indicates that her husband is in constant paint from the injuries. She wrote: “As his wife, I have been distraught over seeing him suffer like this. There have been several nights where I had my hand on my phone ready to call 911 when his breathing became so labored it was terrifying.”
Kelley says her husband has “refused to give in to the pain” and was insistent upon continuing to perform the duties of his office. She said that after he’d gone to Washington post-attack, he returned with a 102.5 fever and pneumonia in his “damaged lung.”
She went on to point out that “some news outlets have victimized Rand a second time.” She wrote that it is “hurtful” to see stories with “hateful headlines like ‘Not A Perfect Neighbor,’ and concocting theories about an ‘ongoing dispute,’ based on nothing more than speculation from an attention-seeking person with no knowledge of anything to do with us.”
One media personality that seemed to find the reports of the senator’s attack entertaining was MSNBC host Kasie Hunt. In introducing new information during a segment on Monday, she said the story was one of her “favorite stories” (watch clip below).
Hunt said, “New details today on the incident that left Sen. Rand Paul with six broken ribs. This might be one of my favorite stories, although, of course, we don’t want — clearly Senator Paul is still struggling.”
Hunt apologized on Twitter later that day, writing:
There’s nothing funny about 6 broken ribs — my apologies to [Rand PauI] for suggesting on air earlier today there was. Hope your recovery is on the right track, senator, looking forward to seeing you in the hallways soon.
There’s nothing funny about 6 broken ribs — my apologies to @RandPauI for suggesting on air earlier today there was. Hope your recovery is on the right track, senator, looking forward to seeing you in the hallways soon.
— Kasie Hunt (@kasie) November 20, 2017
Of the attacker, Kelley Paul says neither she or her husband have spoken to Boucher in 10 years.
“The only ‘dispute’ existed solely in the attacker’s troubled mind,” Kelley Paul wrote, “until, on a beautiful autumn day, he ran down the hill on our property and slammed his body into Rand’s lower back as he stood facing away, wearing noise canceling headphones to protect his ears from the lawnmower.”
This was not a “scuffle,” a “fight” or an “altercation,” as many in the media falsely describe it. It was a deliberate, blindside attack.
This has been a terrible experience; made worse by the media’s gleeful attempts to blame Rand for it, ridiculing him for everything from mowing his own lawn to composting.
This Thanksgiving weekend, instead of playing golf with his sons or enjoying our annual touch football game with family and neighbors, Rand will be in pain. But we will still be grateful for the love of our large and supportive family, and for the encouragement and prayers of hundreds of kind and thoughtful people during these last weeks.