Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) greets constituents during an event at the Harvest Coffee and Cafe coffee shop on Feb. 19, 2014 in Shelbyville, Ky.
Luke Sharrett/Getty

Rand Paul asks to run for both the Senate and presidency in 2016

Updated

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul is searching for a solution that will allow him to run for re-election in the Senate and also launch a presidential bid in 2016.

The Republican recently requested legislation from Kentucky Senate Majority Leader Damon Thayer that could grant his wish, the Washington Times reportedPaul expressed to Thayer that a state law is unconstitutional if it is interpreted as preventing a candidate from simultaneously running for Senate re-election and for president, according to the newspaper.

Paul, who was elected to the Senate in 2010, has hinted that he is seriously considering a bid for the GOP presidential nomination in two years.

The senator ranked second among Republicans in a recent poll that asked Americans who they hope will run in the next presidential election, with 39% of respondents throwing their support behind the libertarian-leaning lawmaker. Only former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush ranked higher, with 41%.  

Paul has taken steps toward the middle in recent weeks, including advising the tea party to be nicer to President Obama and adopt a more optimistic tone overallPreviously, he urged Democrats to return campaign money raised by former President Bill Clinton to protest his affair with Monica Lewinsky, an action viewed as a ploy to harm former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as she contemplates a run for president in 2016.

Morning Joe, 2/19/14, 9:32 AM ET

Rand Paul outlines inclusive vision for GOP

Politico Playbook: Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., is seeking to reshape the GOP by outlining a new inclusive vision for the party. Mike Allen discusses.

Kentucky and Rand Paul

Rand Paul asks to run for both the Senate and presidency in 2016

Updated