Rand Paul says his position on drones is unchanged, Judge Napolitano clarifies
All hell broke loose Monday after Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) made the following statement on Neil Cavuto’s television show, ”I’ve never argued against any technology being used when you have an imminent threat, an active crime going on,” Paul said. “If someone comes out of a liquor store with a weapon and fifty dollars in cash. I don’t care if a drone kills him or a policeman kills him.”
Many people, including his libertarian-leaning base, flew off the handle accusing the Senator of everything from being a “Politician” to being a supporter of the police state. Is this the same guy who filibustered the Brennan nomination for 13 hours over drone authority?
In response, Paul made the following statement yesterday:
“My comments last night left the mistaken impression that my position on drones had changed.
“Let me be clear: it has not. Armed drones should not be used in normal crime situations. They may only be considered in extraordinary, lethal situations where there is an ongoing, imminent threat. I described that scenario previously during my Senate filibuster.
“Additionally, surveillance drones should only be used with warrants and specific targets.
“Fighting terrorism and capturing terrorists must be done while preserving our constitutional protections. This was demonstrated last week in Boston. As we all seek to prevent future tragedies, we must continue to bear this in mind.”
In addition, the Senator contacted none other the FOX Sr. Judicial Analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano who spoke about the issue on Varney & Co.
Napolitano stated he received a call from Paul stating concerns about the misunderstanding of his statement. Does the Judge believe Rand Paul has flip-flopped on his drone stance?
“The answer is an unequivocal no”, states Napolitano.
He then stated that the Senator should have said, “Coming out of a liquor store, SHOOTING a gun” and went on to explain all the legalese concerning the filibuster, Paul’s most recent statement and killing without due process, which has always been Rand Paul’s concern.
In a similar vein, an analysis in the American Conservative magazine stated, ”Paul wasn’t as clear as he should have been,” he writes. “It seems like he’s trying to describe a firefight-type situation in which the cops are forced to neutralize a thief robbing a liquor store, but the way he actually describes it sounds far more innocuous.”