Among the many bewildering puzzles in D.C. these days, this may be the best: Why did Rand Paul’s neighbor allegedly tackle him? The Republican senator from Kentucky was dropped on his lawn like a sack of hammers in a mysterious dispute.
We know who allegedly took him down: one Rene Boucher, who has lived next door for years. (Pronounce his name as if you are chewing croissants and sipping chardonnay by the Tuileries – your friends will be très impressed! Ruh-nay BOO-shay.) We know the result: According to the police report, Paul suffered cuts on his face, and according to the senator’s Twitter feed, “six broken ribs &…a pleural effusion.” (I had an old Chevy with a pleural effusion; it pulled to the left and the lights flickered.) And we know Monsieur Boucher has pled not guilty to a misdemeanor assault charge related to the incident, although other more serious charges may be coming.
What we still don’t know is why this happened. The take from the senator and his team is that it was “a blindside, violent attack by a disturbed person.” They keep winking at the idea Boucher was virulently anti-Trump/anti-Republican, and when he saw Sen. Paul cruising his yard on a riding mower, something snapped. Mind you, they are not specifically saying this – just strongly implying it.
An attorney for Boucher, meanwhile, is saying it had nothing to do with politics and was “a very regrettable dispute between two neighbors over a matter that most people would regard as trivial.” I have no idea what that means. Maybe it was a disagreement over how well pasta should be cooked, or whether anyone can beat Alabama this season, or if “Modern Family” is still funny or just tedious. Who knows?
But the bigger mystery remains – a U.S. senator was pretty seriously roughed up outside his own home, and for some strange reason, neither he nor the other guy supposedly involved seems willing to step up and say precisely what it was about. Until they do, I’m going to say it was Colonel Mustard in the kitchen with the wrench. And don’t ask me any questions. Like everyone else, apparently, I have a right to remain silent.