You know those Depends commercials where they have some D-list celebrity or our own beloved Clay Matthews put on the diaper to show how fashionable you can be while wearing an incontinence aid?
I say that company needs to hire, endorse or do whatever it can to get Rand Paul on their side. “When I fillibuster, I only do so in a Depends,” could be the tag line.
All kidding aside, it is a shame that the first real meaningful fillibuster since Jeff Smith went to Washington (watch Mr. Smith Goes to Washington to understand) was cut short by nature’s call. But the question Paul raised still remains – should the government be allowed to use drones to kill Americans on U.S. soil without a trial?
This is how Paul began his fillibuster:
I rise today to begin to filibuster John Brennan’s nomination for the CIA I will speak until I can no longer speak. I will speak as long as it takes, until the alarm is sounded from coast to coast that our Constitution is important, that your rights to trial by jury are precious, that no American should be killed by a drone on American soil without first being charged with a crime, without first being found to be guilty by a court. That Americans could be killed in a cafe in San Francisco or in a restaurant in Houston or at their home in bowling green, Kentucky, is an abomination. It is something that should not and cannot be tolerated in our country. I don’t rise to oppose John Brennan’s nomination simply for the person. I rise today for the principle. The principle is one that as Americans we have fought long and hard for and to give up on that principle, to give up on the bill of rights, to give up on the Fifth Amendment protection that says that no person shall be held without due process, that no person shall be held for a capital offense without being indicted. This is a precious American tradition and something we should not give up on easily.
All Paul wants is a yes or no answer. Not the “we don’t intend to do that” dodge that is coming from the White House. Obama may not intend to kill his political enemies with unmanned drones, but what’s to stop the next power-hungry president that comes along.
Paul understands the importance of our Constitution and the protections from cruel and unusual punishment and the guarantee of a fair trial for the accused. It is when subjects such as these arise that you have to wonder if our President, who proclaims himself to be a Constitutional expert, understands the same.
So you go Paul. Stand up, fillibuster and put on a Depends before your next battle.