#StandWithRand: Rand Paul, Barack Obama, Drones, and Presidential Kill Lists


For almost 13 hours on Wednesday, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) led a filibuster on the Senate floor that called attention to the Obama administration’s refusal to share its case for why the president can target and kill U.S. citizens without oversight. Joined by about a dozen different colleagues throughout the event, Paul hammered home questions surrounding positions advanced by President Barack Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder, and Obama’s nominee to head the CIA, John Brennan. The entire filibuster is viewable at C-SPAN’s website.

Here’s a condensed version of the issues under debate, featuring Sen. Paul, President Obama, and actual drone surveillance footage.

Produced by Sharif Matar.


RelatedLindsey Graham Boasts About Dinner with Obama

U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) released a statement Thursday boasting about his dinner with Barack Obama. He made the following statement after meeting with the President:

Last night’s dinner with President Obama and my Republican colleagues was productive and substantive. I hope it will serve as the beginning of a new, long-overdue paradigm where people in elected office actually begin talking to each other about meaningful issues…

Rand’s Band of Brothers

Senator Paul Rand stages a filibuster — and is joined by a happy few comrades.

Whatever his ideological leanings, surely Shakespeare would have raised an eyebrow at the political scene Wednesday, if only for the content it would have stirred in his creative mind. Though Rand Paul spearheaded an epic 13-hour filibuster, he didn’t fill that time alone. Fourteen other Senators total — including one Democrat — offered him a respite along with comradely, thought-provoking questions, and humor, to boot.

In an effort to delay the inevitable nomination of CIA Director John Brennan, Paul decided to utilize the old-school filibuster and draw his attention to an issue of utmost importance to him. According to filibuster rules, if you yield the floor your filibuster is complete. Three hours in, Paul yielded, but only to take questions, from mostly Republican colleagues and appeared thankful for and rejuvenated by their input.

The Republican senators who participated in the filibuster with Paul included Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Pat Toomey (R-Penn.), John Thune (R-S.D.), John Barrasso (R-Wy.), Tim Scott (R-S.C.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), and Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.).

Some comments, or technically questions, were in part to pass the time, but many managed to raise spirits by quoting movies, musicians, famous authors, or regular supporters. Sens. Cruz, Scott, and Flake are all freshmen. Traditionally, their first speech on the Senate floor would have been on something of personal importance, but instead they helped Rand further his filibuster. Since cell phones are banned on the floor, Cruz offered to read series of Tweets so Paul could see what was going on in the outside world — the “Twitterverse” — encouraging Paul (and supporters)….

Read the whole thing.

Highlights from our earlier posts:

Angry McCain ups ante, calls Paul, Cruz ‘wacko birds’

Elder Sen. John McCain, who this week engaged in friendly fire when he launched his maverick missiles at fellow Republicans seeking clarification on the administration’s drone policies, has upped the ante, deriding Tea Party-backed GOP lawmakers as “wacko birds.”…

Ted Cruz Batters Eric Holder on Drone Strikes Without an Imminent Threat

It seems to me that Cruz is hitting on the key distinction that separates acceptable lethal force on American soil from nonacceptable lethal force: is there an imminent threat? What is eye-opening about this exchange is that Eric Holder seems to think the words “appropriate” and “constitutional” have the same meaning…

Sen. Ted Cruz Joins Sen. Rand Paul’s Filibuster on Brennan Nomination Part 1 

Top 10 Quotes From Rand Paul’s Amazing 8-Plus Hour Filibuster on Civil Liberties, Drone Strikes

Moral Support: Rep. Louie Gohmert Delivers Cough Drops, Chocolate to Flagging Filibusterer Rand Paul.  Democrats To Object to Sense of the Senate Resolution Stating It’s Unconstitutional to Kill Non-Combatant American Citizens on American Soil

From The Ulsterman, Republican Insider: “Out with the old, in with the new”:

…I also want to point out another Senator who helped out yesterday that should have received a lot more media attention for doing so.  Senator Mark Kirk who is still recovering from a serious stroke walked over to Senator Paul after he had been speaking for over six hours and set an apple and thermos next to Senator Paul.  Of all the words and players who participated in yesterday’s filibuster, that was the moment that really moved me to tears and made me believe even more in the future of this party…

And, if you’re snowed-in this weekend, here’s the entire 13-hour filibuster (H/T Freedom’s Lighthouse):

The Senate convened and resumed consideration of the nomination of Caitlin Halligan to be United States Circuit Judge for the District of Columbia Circuit. The Senate rejected cloture. At approximately 11:45 a.m. (offset time of 1 hour, 17 minutes) Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) began a filibuster of the confirmation of John Brennan as director of the Central Intelligence Agency.


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