Editor’s Note: This post was written prior to Senator Paul’s commencement of a speaking filibuster of the Patriot Act on Wednesday afternoon. At the point of publication he was more than 9 hours into his speaking filibuster…
Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) is many things to many people. The John McCain-Lindsey Graham faction of the Republican Party view him as a greater danger to national security than even Barack Obama. Fiscal conservatives love his commitment to economic sanity – where both taxes AND spending are cut. Social conservatives appreciate his stands on ending abortion and protecting traditional marriage while not enjoying his position on the war on drugs. Libertarian leaning Republicans just love Rand Paul – almost everything he says and does reinforces the idea that he is the first “libertarianish” candidate with a chance at winning the White House since Barry Goldwater and would be the first “libertarianish” President since Calvin Coolidge.
During his young campaign for the White House, he has already shifted, bent or “adjusted” certain policy stances to make himself more appealing to mainstream Republicans. For this, he has caught a lot of flack from pundits because they claim he hasn’t remained “consistent” with his libertarian philosophy. That’s hogwash. Every statewide or national candidate is forced to make concessions in an effort to be elected. In this respect, Rand Paul is no different. He has modified issues, or changed the way he says things in an effort to make himself more appealing for a wider range of voters.
What makes Rand Paul different is that he actually has things that he will not be made to move on. Like the government’s assault on our constitutional liberties. Like his ideas or hate them, he’s not backing down… even when he disagrees with the GOP establishment.
On Tuesday Senator Paul sat down with CNN’s Alisyn Camerota to discuss our nations fight against terrorism and his opposition to the Patriot Act.
On the Patriot Act vote:
ALISYN CAMEROTA: Quickly I want to ask you about the vote to reauthorize the Patriot Act. It’s coming up this week or the House version of it called the Freedom Act. This week in the Senate, all eyes on you. Are you going to filibuster this?
SEN. RAND PAUL: I’ll do whatever it takes to stop it. Whether or not I’m allowed to filibuster is another question. There’s sort of a paper filibuster that you can always do, demanding that there’s 60 votes and objecting, not giving them consent to proceed. That I will do.
So I will do a formal filibuster. Whether or not that means I can go to the Floor, some of that depends on what happens because you’re not always allowed, people don’t realize this, but you have to get to the Floor when the Floor allows you to come.
So whether that happens or not, I will filibuster the Patriot Act and I will do everything I can to try to adhere to the courts. The courts have now said the bulk collection of records is illegal. They should stop immediately.
ALISYN CAMEROTA: If you’re allowed to filibuster, you plan to talk for 13 hours or whatever it takes?
SEN. RAND PAUL: Well nobody can predict how long you can talk, but I plan on doing everything humanly possible to try to stop the Patriot Act.