Bucking the establishment on the Patriot Act.
Rand Paul inhabits a unique position in the Republican Party. While he’s conservative on some issues, his Libertarian views on others put him at odds with the establishment.
His recent filibuster on the Patriot Act is a prime example.
Bill Kristol of the Weekly Standard voiced his thoughts on the issue in an appearance on ABC News Sunday. I’m not sure this is a fair line of attack.
Evan McMurry of Mediaite has the story:
Kristol: Liberal Democrats Had Rand Paul’s Policies Before He Did
A This Week panel noted that Representative Keith Ellison (D-MN) #standswithRand (sigh) over the NSA’s bulk collection of communications data and criminal justice reform, causing Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol to call for a point of clarification.
“That’s not fair to Keith,” Kristol said. “Rand stands with Keith. Seriously. They had these positions first. Rand Paul has decided that he wants to be a liberal Democrat, undercut necessary intelligence collection and weaken law enforcement services, and Rand Paul thinks that’s going to sell in the Republican primary.
Here’s the video:
Rest assured that the issue of data collection for national security purposes will come up in the Republican primary debates and every candidate will be asked about it.
As far as the senate goes, Andrew C. McCarthy of National Review recently explained how this all came to pass:
Why National-Security Republicans Lost the Patriot Act Debate
The NSA doesn’t even know your name.
But you probably don’t know that. It is amazing how little the public has learned from the debate the national-security Right has lost — not is losing but has lost — over the National Security Agency’s “metadata” program.
The information the NSA has collected in bulk from telecommunication-service providers does not include the names of telephone subscribers. They don’t know who you are. It does not include addresses. They don’t know where you are.
Most people still do not know this, which reflects the power of the “domestic spying” canard peddled by Rand Paul’s anti-government extremists and Baby-Boom lefties who apparently still think it’s 1974. The latter camp includes a three-judge panel of the Second Circuit federal appeals court in New York, whose ruling that the NSA program is illegal begins with this astonishing claim: “In the early 1970s, in a climate not altogether unlike today’s, the intelligence-gathering and surveillance activities of the NSA, the FBI, and the CIA came under public scrutiny.”
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