Written: March 2013
With the misuse of words and wordplay that has been thrown around in Congress (“Jedi Mind-Melt” and “Snow-Questerian”) I thought it would be fun, and educational, to poke fun at the recent filibuster speech, given by Sen. Rand Paul, by naming this editorial Fili-DRONE
In attempts to block or delay the nomination of Steven Brennan, Sen. Rand Paul did the impossible: performing a 12 hour filibuster speech, with no restroom breaks, to stop the Senate from nominating Steven Brennan to be the next director of the CIA.
Filibuster, by definition, means “an effort to prevent action in a legislature by making a long speech or a series of speeches.” [This tactic is normally used by a group that doesn’t have enough votes to defeat a bill] Since the Senate Rules allow unlimited time and debate on a bill, a filibuster may be used to attempt a compromise; or more often than not, to draw attention on an issue away from the voting majority. Furthermore, a filibuster speech may not need to be related to the bill. And so, on March 6th, 2013, what started as a rouse, turned out to be a historic moment in Congressional History because it did not at all relate to Steven Brennan’s nomination.
Rand’s filibuster speech was not so much on Steven Brennan, but more so on Obama and his Administration on Drone Strikes against Americans on US soil. [In other words, he totally utilized his time and energy towards President Obama; and not Steven Brennan nor his credentials, which was the intended purpose of this filibuster.]
He did however garnered public support from his fellow members in Congress–prominent Republican senators chimed in with questions to help Rand Paul continue his banter on the Senate floor. And he also garnered attention from the Twitter Universe: “Stand With Rand!” tweeted by Republican National Caucus chairman, Reince Preibus,
But like all good things, at 11:47 pm Sen. Rand Paul ended his 12 hour-long speech and went down in history as the ninth member of Congress to give a long-standing speech on the Congressional floor.
He may have gained favor from his party, but he stepped on a few conservative toes: Sen. Jon McCain and Sen. Lindsay Graham. Both senators rejected Paul’s contention that “the Executive Branch lacks the constitutional authority to unilaterally kill Americans on U.S. soil with unmanned drones.” So in the end, did Sen Rand Paul achieve his ultimate goal? He did draw attention on an issue away from the voting majority, but he did not inspire action from the Senate majority to block the nomination of Steven Brennan. So it was a complete and utter waste of time.
However he did achieve two things:
1) A badge of strength for his bladder;
2.) An answer from the U.S. Justice Department: “the president could not order drone strike against a non-combatant American on U.S. Soil.”
The odd ball from this was how he confused the notion that the President of The United States lacks the constitutional authority to use drones on innocent Americans on U.S. soil, when there is no evidence that the constitution permits any President to attack its own citizens. Hence my interpretation for Rand Paul’s speech as “Fili-Drone.”
To have a sworn-in President use drones (flying above our heads) on his own people, on the same soil, is quite sinister; un-patriotic; contradictory; and quite perplexing.
My only question is how come there wasn’t this type of fiery speech in Congress during the Bush Administration? Didn’t he misuse and abuse his executive powers during the Iraqi War? Did he commit War Crimes?
To follow Rand Paul’s story follow this link: http://www.politico.com/story/2013/03/rand-pauls-moment-88571.html
To read more on the definition of “Filibuster” follow this link: http://www.merriam-webster.com/trend-watch/2013/03/08/#hAA5cUyfqpqi7HFH.99