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Lindsey Graham: Premise of Rand Paul’s filibuster is ridiculous

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By Doug Powers  •  March 7, 2013 02:24 PM

**Written by Doug Powers

Yesterday’s filibuster by Sen. Rand Paul was all about a fairly simple question for the president: Is it constitutional to order a drone strike on an American citizen who is not an imminent threat on American soil without due process?

There was no response from the White House where a Nobel Peace Prize adorns a West Wing wall.

South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham — being a courtly southern gentlemen who doesn’t believe in troubling the man who just bought him dinner — found Paul’s entire premise outlandish:

“This idea that we’re going to use a drone to attack an American citizen in a cafe in America is ridiculous.”

Well, in that case it should be an easy question to answer, shouldn’t it?

Graham, not unlike Eric Holder yesterday, insisted on focusing on likelihood rather than the constitutionality of the hypothetical scenario.

Graham also referred to Paul’s filibuster as “paranoia between libertarians and the hard left that is unjustified.” Aren’t these the same people who always want to bring both sides together? In any case, Graham’s off base. If Paul had come out and warned everybody against going into cafes because there’s a good chance they’d end up as “domestic drone war on terror collateral damage” with no evidence anything like that was imminent, then Graham might have had a point, but that’s not what happened. Paul merely posed a question — one that seems to have struck a nerve among the “just trust us, we know what’s best” bunch in DC.

The Hermanator wasn’t thrilled with Sen. Graham:

John McCain agreed with Graham: “I don’t think what happened yesterday was helpful to the American people.” McCain didn’t like it one bit.

Drudge does his stuff:

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The White House and Holder did finally respond:

Attorney General Eric Holder wrote Sen. Rand Paul,R-Ky., to confirm that President Obama does not have the authority to kill an American on U.S. soil in a non-combat situation, Obama’s spokesman announced today.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney quoted from the letter that Holder sent to Paul today. “Does the president have the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on an American soil?” Holder wrote, per Carney. “The answer is no.”

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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