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Although he’s beginning to look tired and sound hoarse, at this hour Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky is continuing his filibuster. My own overriding impulse all day his been simple: good for him. He’s standing up for civil liberties in a way that involves no back room wheeling and dealing, but a powerful dose of determination, courage and sheer cussedness.
But is Sen. Paul wrong on the underlying issue?
Richard Miniter insists that he is. A fine journalist and a frequent guest on Ricochet podcasts, Richard just put up this post on Facebook:
RAND PAUL’S STAND against John Brennan’s nomination as CIA director is doing the right thing for the wrong reason. Brennan has a reputation inside the intelligence community for “failing upward” and would likely not be a stellar DCI. But Sen. Paul’s objection-that Obama might use drones to kill Americans on U.S. soil–is actually dangerous. In reality, you want the president to be able to kill Americans who are attacking civilians without a court order. Does any body really think that Lincoln have gotten a warrant every time the confederates took a shot at federal property. Should George Washington have had to get a judge’s approval to fire on the rebels in the 1794 Whiskey Rebellion? When people take up arms against our country, they are making war on us–not engaging in criminal activity. If Sen. Paul’s prevails, they will have all of the protections of criminal law–and the public will have none of the protections of military force. Hardly a good bargain.