Senator Rand Paul’s 13 hours of filibuster on drones and with respect to the CIA nomination of John Brennan drew praise from staunch liberals and progressives like Amy Goodman of Democracy Now, and at the same time it totally pissed off the older rank-and-file Republicans like Arizona Senator John McCain.
Meanwhile Couch Potato Conservative bloggers like Michelle Malkin and her minions (well, OK, minion Doug Powers) waxed on about how great Rand Paul’s “stand” was and wondered if more Liberals were going to #StandWithRand.
And, let’s get this out of the way, Senator Paul was right to bring up the question of where the Obama Administration stood on the use of drone strikes on American soil and against Americans who were only said to be connected with terrorist operations, and without any real proof to back up the claim.
When I heard Rand Paul raise the question, the first scenario I considered was one involving domestic terrorists, and more specifically white supremacists. I could see a storyline where white supremacists gained a ton of weapons and went to war against the state from some remote perch in, say, the Texas Hill Country. That picture has a very real chance of seeing reality, what with the rise in hate group across the country.
But, that very real view was lost as Attorney General Eric Holder wrote a letter to Senator Paul basically saying that there would not be such drone strikes. Paul expressed his happiness with the letter, and said he would not try to block John Brennan’s nomination to CIA Director.
But what was not lost is the fact that Senator Paul just plain ripped his own party apart. Take this comment over at the blog Red State, which supported Senator Paul’s filibuster:
It is beyond hilarious to me that Rand’s principled stand is getting all these kudos but his father’s decades of them in the House were constantly dismissed on this site over the last five years.
And that’s just the start of it, blogs like Hot Air contain considerations that a number of the same Republicans that would back drone strikes by a Republican President like George W. Bush, are jumping on Rand Paul’s bandwagon just because the assumed opponent is President Obama.
What this stunt by Senator Paul has done is divided the GOP, with the younger, non-established types like Joe McCarthy-like Ted Cruz and water-at-the-podium-on-national-television-drinking Florida Senator Marco Rubio siding with Paul, and the older establishment wing led by Senators McCain and Lindsey Graham barking out against him.
If you think it’s bad for the GOP, just wait and watch as the same-sex-marriage debate completely rips the party to shreds. By the time that argument’s over, you won’t know the GOP.