Re-establishing a Faith in Government
There comes a time when someone has to speak out, when they are fearful of policies, or troubled by the potential effects that could arise from passing this policy. Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul (R) challenged the process last week, using the age old filibuster to further his case that the Constitution is not to be disparaged.
When walking into the Senate for this March hearing, Senator Paul had his handy notebook that he carries and was unprepared for a full blown filibuster. However, he proceeded to move on and command the floor.
On a day when many of us, in Maryland were expecting a blizzard, having work and school cancelled, it came in another form, the 12 hour, 52 minute taking of the Senate floor. In this lengthy speech Senator Paul held back the nomination of the new CIA Director John Brennan, whom upon his appointment had an unsettling disposition which pertained to what he could do with drones.
The question had previously been asked of him, basically: “Can the CIA and the U.S. Government use drones on U.S. soil to kill American citizens? In response, Mr. Brennan referred the question to President Barack Obama. This question bounced around the White House, but was never clearly answered.
In order for Senator Paul to allow this vote to occur, he wanted either President Obama or Attorney General Eric Holder to provide a statement, saying that there would be no one in the United States who were targeted by drones in such a manner as a coffee shop, without due process, defined by the Fifth Amendment and who were not a imminent threat to their current status.
In his speech a few of the younger senators, including Utah Sen. Mike Lee and freshman Senator Ted Cruz of Texas stood up to help him through the process. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio gained some steam after poking fun at himself for having his water bottle handy. On his twitter page he asked: "Why is it so hard for the POTUS to just say NO, it is not constitutional to kill a citizen who is not an imminent threat with a drone on U.S. soil?"
Even some across the aisle support came in from Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden, a Democrat, who asked several questions of Paul, processing many like ideals and recognized that he was not going to yield the floor for a vote to occur.
Some of the establishment Republicans, who would have greatly benefitted in joining in, stood down and then attended a dinner with the president. Arizona Sen. John McCain and South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham were two of them, using vitriolic condemning words to define what Senator Paul did and patronizing those in the Liberty movements, especially "youth."
C-SPAN, which apparently does not disclose their rankings, could only report to news agencies that they were "robust" for this hearing. Twitter and social media took on this epic speech. Two hashtags on Twitter, #filiblizzard and #StandWithRand gained the spotlight of the day, with over 3,500 tweets per hour and Paul’s own account gained over 4,000 new followers that day, according to mashable.com.
With over a million tweets between the two, Senator Paul's message was moving. Senator Cruz shared some of them with him on the Senate floor. The media couldn't sweep this one under the rug and pretend it didn't happen. Ease of use for listening in or watching this presentation, with the modern technology aided in clarity and rightful reporting of facts.
On Facebook, Rand Paul 2016 page, a Mark Twain quote stands out. "In the beginning of a change the patriot is a scarce man, and brave, and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot."
For anyone who listened in, they heard a remarkable unrehearsed speech, one of eloquence and timeliness. They heard of property right issues, both tangible and intangible, civil right issues, and citations of precedent cases that have taken away some of those rights in the past.
He spoke of the intent of the Supreme Court’s Kilo v. New London decision at one point and briefly claimed that it is being used by many local governments improperly and as a redistribution of wealth, from the poor to the rich. In having similar beliefs, he concurred that the constant regulations of property owners have put these owners in a bad place, where it is difficult to upkeep homes, especially those seeing many seasons.
In his handy notebook, it appeared as though Senator Paul had been keeping track for a long time the abuses or potential abuses of the Constitution and the inherent rights of the average citizen.
In the end and without a break for food, nor use of the restroom, Senator Paul yielded the floor – and the Senate rose in applause, which was cut off in many media sources.
In the day that followed, Attorney General Holder sent an email to 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 weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on American soil?" The answer to that question is no.
From all appearances this has shaken up the two party system even more, which is attractive to many in the 40-under crew.
The libertarian thought of “if I am not hurting you, then leave me alone” is gaining steam. This can make all of the difference in the world – in 2016.
Establishment Republicans may have to embrace the new feelings of old to join in. The unaffiliated voter movement increases daily, as personal rights and freedom of choice are infringed upon.
Only one question remains: Why did the new CIA director request a 1787 copy of the Constitution to swear an oath upon, one that lacked the writing of the Bill of Rights not included until 1791, including the Fifth Amendment?
retraining my brain for the future, conferring with the past....