Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham ripped into Senator Rand Paul this morning in response to his 13-hour talking filibuster.
Via Business Insider:
U.S. Sen. John McCain blasted fellow Republican Rand Paul on the Senate floor this morning for his 13-hour filibuster to block John Brennan’s confirmation as CIA Director.
“Calm down, Senator,” McCain said, in an apostrophe to Paul. “The U.S. government cannot randomly target U.S. citizens.”
In his filibuster Wednesday, Paul criticized the White House over its drone policies, and for refusing to rule out military strikes against U.S. citizens on American soil.
McCain, a staunch foreign policy hawk, said Thursday that Paul’s warnings that the U.S. could target “Jane Fonda” or “people in cafes” bring the debate into the “realm of the ridiculous.”
“If Mr. Paul wants to be taken seriously he needs to do more than pull political stunts that fire up impressionable libertarian kids,” McCain said, adding: “I don’t think what happened yesterday is helpful to the American people.”
The entire conservative blogosphere was energized by Rand Paul’s defense of the Constitution, Due Process, and the American people yesterday, and McCain ridicules them as “impressionable libertarian kids”.
Lindsey Graham also chimed in, saying he was “disappointed” with those who joined Paul’s filibuster, and added he would vote to confirm Brennan … because of the filibuster.
Let me get this straight – You’re going to confirm a man as Director of the CIA because somebody had the balls to ask the President of the United States whether or not he feels he has the authority to execute an American citizen on American soil?
These two clowns are exactly what is wrong with today’s Republican party. When somebody in the party decides to grow a spine and stand up for the American people, McCain and Graham laugh it off as ridiculous.
What’s truly ridiculous is what these two – along with 10 of their colleagues – were doing yesterday as Paul fought to preserve the America that our Founding Fathers envisioned.
These people (h/t Eye On Politics)…
Lindsey Graham SC
Bob Corker TN
Kelly Ayotte NH
John McCain AZ
Richard Burr NC
Saxby Chambliss GA
Dan Coates IN
Mike Johanns NE
Pat Toomey PA
Tom Coburn OK
Ron Johnson WI
John Hoeven ND
Were having dinner with President Obama.
They were having dinner with the man who finds it difficult to say ‘No’ to the question, “Can you kill an American on American soil?”
That question, as Paul noted yesterday, should have been pretty easy to answer.
To be clear, Paul is not infallible in any way, shape, or form. His vote to confirm Chuck Hagel seemed to play to his father’s base, and he does other things that tend to mirror his father that I find objectionable.
But he was right in what he did yesterday. He was right, and he should be applauded.
What’s actually entering the “realm of the ridiculous” Mr. McCain, is that you have been entrenched in the old school GOP so long that you are completely unable to identify a staunch defense of the very documents that you and the President of the United States have sworn to uphold … if it bit you in the ass.
Update: As WTH at Publius Forum points out, Senators Johnson, Toomey, and Chambliss all returned to the Senate floor to lend moral support to Rand Paul’s efforts.
NBC has released a Justice Department memo that makes a legal case for killing Americans using drone strikes, without any justifiable cause.
A confidential Justice Department memo concludes that the U.S. government can order the killing of American citizens if they are believed to be “senior operational leaders” of al-Qaida or “an associated force” — even if there is no intelligence indicating they are engaged in an active plot to attack the U.S.
The 16-page memo, a copy of which was obtained by NBC News, provides new details about the legal reasoning behind one of the Obama administration’s most secretive and controversial polices: its dramatically increased use of drone strikes against al-Qaida suspects abroad, including those aimed at American citizens, such as the September 2011 strike in Yemen that killed alleged al-Qaida operatives Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan. Both were U.S. citizens who had never been indicted by the U.S. government nor charged with any crimes.
The secrecy surrounding such strikes is fast emerging as a central issue in this week’s hearing of White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan, a key architect of the drone campaign, to be CIA director. Brennan was the first administration official to publicly acknowledge drone strikes in a speech last year, calling them “consistent with the inherent right of self-defense.” In a separate talk at the Northwestern University Law School in March, Attorney General Eric Holder specifically endorsed the constitutionality of targeted killings of Americans, saying they could be justified if government officials determine the target poses “an imminent threat of violent attack.”
Will there be wall-to-wall coverage of this on all networks? Where is the outrage? Nothing on par to the criticisms of the Bush administration. No Code Pink coverage. No Cindy Sheehan watch.
In short – torturing terrorists – Bad! Killing Americans without proof – Meh.
Perhaps Kirsten Powers, a liberal commentator on the Fox News Network, pointed out the contrast in the best terms, criticizing the President himself.
President Obama blasted Bush for waterboarding 3 al-qaeda operatives, but has no trouble KILLING Americans, w/no ‘specific evidence.’
Joe Scarborough, MSNBC’s token moderate Republican, even referred to the news as “terrifying”, and added, “If George Bush Had Done This, It Would Have Been Stopped”.
It would have been stopped because the liberal media would have made this all about how evil President Bush was. Instead, Obama will get a pass. The controversial Gitmo pictures which showed abuse of Taliban prisoners was national news for months on end. A kill memo for American citizens? That will be forgotten in short order.
But it’s not just the media saying this memo is no big deal. According to Powers, Congress has known about the kill memo since last June.
If Congress and the media are unwilling to hold the President to a higher standard, who will?
The left is going apoplectic at an idea presented by NRA vice-president Wayne LaPierre that there should be armed guards in every school following the massacre in Newtown, Connecticut.
Some critics called the idea “impractical at best, dangerous at worst,” and likened any such program to the Trayvon Martin shooting, suggesting that schools would be patrolled by neighborhood watch individuals such as George Zimmerman.
The reality however is that the Justice Department has long had a program in effect with the accurate title, “COPS in Schools”, a program heavily funded, promoted, and implemented by former President Bill Clinton following the horrific shootings in Columbine over a decade ago.
In a manual created by the Department of Justice (DOJ) in 2005, the program benefits involved in using Safety Resource Officers (SROs) are partly described as such:
“… most school administrators and teachers gain three significant benefits from SROs that sometimes the program needs to remind school personnel they are gaining in order to motivate them to continue to support program funding:
• increased safety in the schools,
• the feeling of increased safety, and
• improved response time.
SROs improve safety in the schools by handling violence and preventing violence.
As Yid With Lid writes:
In April 2000 as part of his commemoration of the first anniversary of deaths at Columbine High School in his weekly radio speech President Clinton announced $120 million in grants, much of it for a program to place armed police officers in schools.
Indeed, a Los Angeles Times report from 2000 spells out some further details:
Clinton also unveiled the $60-million fifth round of funding for “COPS in School,” a Justice Department program that helps pay the costs of placing police officers in schools to help make them safer for students and teachers. The money will be used to provide 452 officers in schools in more than 220 communities.
“Already, it has placed 2,200 officers in more than 1,000 communities across our nation, where they are heightening school safety as well as coaching sports and acting as mentors and mediators for kids in need,” Clinton said.
Not only did Clinton provide more funding as a direct response to the Columbine incident, but he was the one who implemented the COPS in Schools program in the first place. And it was President Obama who cut funding for the program.
The NRA came out with a proposal to post armed police officers at schools to prevent or at least minimize the next school shooting. The left promptly called the idea nuts.
Turns out, it wasn’t a new idea. President Bill Clinton proposed the same idea in April 2000. He implemented it, too, only to see Barack Obama cut the funding for it.
So, if you’re keeping score, the NRA agrees with a 12-year old Bill Clinton position on school security. The left just called a former Democrat president “crazy.”
The cuts made by the Obama administration were made despite warnings from the Government Accountability Office which stated that, “many school district officials said that they experience challenges in planning for emergencies due to a lack of equipment, training for staff, and expertise and some school districts face difficulties in communicating and coordinating with first responders and parents.”
They do this over in state-run media loving China, don’t they?
Via the Daily Caller:
Internal Department of Justice emails obtained by The Daily Caller show Attorney General Eric Holder’s communications staff has collaborated with the left-wing advocacy group Media Matters for America in an attempt to quell news stories about scandals plaguing Holder and America’s top law enforcement agency.
Dozens of pages of emails between DOJ Office of Public Affairs Director Tracy Schmaler and Media Matters staffers show Schmaler, Holder’s top press defender, working with Media Matters to attack reporters covering DOJ scandals. TheDC obtained the emails through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.
Emails sent in September and November 2010 show Schmaler working with Media Matters staffer Jeremy Holden on attacking news coverage of the New Black Panther Party voter intimidation scandal.
Holden attacked former DOJ Civil Rights Division attorneys J. Christian Adams and Hans von Spakovsky on Sept. 20, 2010 for what he called an attempt “to reignite the phony New Black Panther Party scandal.”
This story should be a bombshell to the American people, but let’s see how the Obama-friendly media spins it. The reason any government official coordinating with the media is big news is because this is what they do in Communist countries. It’s propoganda.
The fact that they coordinated with Media Matters is even more troublesome, because in another Daily Caller investigation, the group had bragged about writing the ‘prime time’ news for other media outlets.
Coordinated, undeniable, media bias.
There’s politically correct hiring practices, and then there’s weapons grade stupidity. Guess which side of the aisle Eric Holder’s Department of Justice falls on?
Yes, the same agency that brought you the bumbling effort known as Fast and Furious, has been actively engaged in a policy of ‘affirmatively recruiting’ people with ‘targeted disabilities’. This means that they weren’t simply issuing directives against discriminatory hiring practices regarding disabled individuals, it means they actively sought out those very recruits.
So what types of disabilities were the Justice Department looking for in their attorneys and staff members (document embedded below)?
The easy joke here is that this explains the incompetence of the Justice Department, but such a ridiculous method for affirmatively hiring disabled employees is no laughing matter.
Be sure to check out the Justice Department documents below…