Thursday, March 14, 2013

A Statesman Emerges

By now, my grand and avid readers, you have either heard of or
have heard the filibuster in the U.S. Senate a few days ago led by
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY). The son of now-retired U.S. Rep. Ron
Paul (R-TX) filibustered for twelve hours and fifty-two minutes
after trying for over a week to get a definitive answer as to whether
or not the Obama administration believed it had the authority to use
drones to target and kill American citizens on American soil without
due process, finally receiving a letter from Attorney General Eric
Holder claiming that they do in fact have that authority. Senator
Rand's filibuster was mainly to oppose the nomination of Obama
choice John Brennan as CIA head but also used the occasion to
point out to our wayward president that no, he does NOT have any
such authority under the Constitution of the United States, the
bedrock of our legal code.

In his epic address to the Senate, Senator Rand sent a powerful
message to President Obama and his rotten regime. He put the
president, the attorney general, and Congress on notice that their
dangerous fantasy will not be tolerated! Brennan has been widely
criticized for being the originator and driving force behind the over-
use of drones --- aircraft designed for spying and for deploying
deadly force on chosen targets, be they objects or people. He
also has been excoriated for ignoring the ideological basis of the
radical Islamic terrorists that the U.S. is confronted by. When talk
in Washington turned to using drones to pursue American citizens
suspected of aiding the terrorists, even those on American soil,
the junior senator from Kentucky wanted a straight answer from
the White House as to the legal propriety (if any) of such activity.
The president actually responded by saying --- I kid you not ---
"It would be inappropriate," and " I haven't killed anyone yet."
Such chilling arrogance! Not taking such a cavalier answer to
such a vital question, Senator Paul launched his filibuster against
John Brennan's nomination to be the next CIA chief. This prompted
Attorney General Eric Holder to write Senator Paul a terse letter
stating thus:

Dear Senator Paul,

It has come to my attention that you have now asked an additional
question: "Does the President have the authority to use a weapon-
ized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on American
soil?" The answer to that question is no.


Eric H. Holder Jr.

Short and not so sweet, but definitely to the point and showing the
discomfort of the Obama administration over Senator Paul's
questions on this part of its security policy and the senator's
filibuster. Although the answer that Attorney General Holder gave
was a starting point of sorts, it does not really address the
question. But this episode certainly demonstrated to the admini-
stration that there are people in Congress and their constituents
who will not be fobbed off by noncommittal answers to key
questions on their minds in regards to the safety of our constitu-
tional law and that of the people themselves at the government's

Senator Rand Paul was, sadly, unable to sway enough of his
colleagues to vote down John Brennan's appointment to head up
the CIA, but he made his constituency, and the country, proud of
him for his courageous stand. Would that his GOP colleagues
have had this courage to make such a stand; Senator Paul was
lambasted by some establishment Republicans including Senators
Lindsey Graham and John McCain, the latter having called the
filibuster "ridiculous" and the former readily agreeing. They are
piqued more by the fact that Senator Paul is emerging as the new
face of the Republican Party as well as that of the "new guard"
replacing the tired, stale, stuffed-shirted old guard that these two
elitists are a part of. Their time in prominence is nearing the end
and they cannot or will not face it. The conservative GOP folk in
the Senate (and those in the House) loved the filibuster and have
praised Rand Paul and his efforts to the sky, and even some
Democrats on Capitol Hill who have serious doubts about the
legal and moral aspects of the Obama policy have joined the
praisefest. One Democrat even joined Senator Paul in the fili-
buster --- Senator Ron Wyden from Oregon. A stoutly liberal
Democrat, Senator Wyden also drew fellow Dems in praising
Senator Paul for his stand and accompanying action. Now that's

What will follow on this issue is yet to be seen, as is the future
of Ron Paul's political career. Some in the GOP, as well as some
conservative commentators, are tabbing him presidential timber
for 2016. But this much is certain: President Obama will have a
harder time advancing his agenda, especially as it pertains to
our country's security and that of her citizens, than he and his
lieutenants were banking on when Obama won a second term
in the White House last fall. Sorry, Mr. President, but we are
not all "Obamunists" now. Nor will we ever be.


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