Sunday, November 23, 2014

Another Rand Move Toward the Establishment (Shockingly on NSA)

A vote recently took place in the Senate with regard to NSA surveillance limitations. Rand voted "no" on the bill.

His office issued the following statement by Rand explaining his vote:
I think NSA reforms are necessary and I will continue to fight against bulk data collection. Last night, I stood on principle by opposing a bill that that included a provision reauthorizing elements of the Patriot Act that violate the Bill of Rights. I have always been steadfast against the Patriot Act and I will continue to do all I can to prevent its extension.
But is this an accurate portrayal of how Rand should have voted if he was really concerned about NSA data collection?

Curiously, it is the left rather than libertarians who see the smoke  in Rand's statement.  Perhaps, it is because the left is more involved with politics, but they clearly understand that Rand's  positioning was more in line with the Republican establishment than an anti-Big Brother posture.

Politico explains:
Rand Paul says he wants surveillance reform. Instead, he helped sink it.
And now he’s under fire from the civil liberties groups who have been his strongest allies in his war on the NSA’s domestic spying program.
If Paul really wanted to help the cause of reining in the NSA, critics say he could have broken with his party and voted to let the bill move ahead — a headline-grabbing moment that would make him stand out from the rest of the Republican presidential field.
Instead, the Kentucky senator — the GOP’s most famous libertarian — voted to block the bill from even being debated.
“He could have voted against the bill on final passage. That would have been a completely different thing than shutting down the debate,” said Laura Murphy of the American Civil Liberties Union, one of Paul’s strongest allies on the issue...
This type of criticism may become a recurring theme as Paul’s presidential campaign blossoms — the purist libertarian beliefs that built the Paul brand are going to keep crashing into traditional Republican standards, especially on national security.
His “no” vote on NSA reform even raised suspicions that Paul just didn’t want to have the debate.
“Even if Senator Paul had problems with the text he still should have voted to advance the bill, offer an amendment to fix his problem, and then vote against the final bill if it wasn’t adopted,” said Mark Jaycox of the Electronic Frontier Foundation. By voting against the procedural motion, he said, “Senator Paul made clear that he didn’t even want to debate the bill.”...
[I]f Paul had voted to start the debate, and one more senator had switched sides, the Senate would be debating Leahy’s bill now, and Paul would have his best platform to talk about civil liberties since his filibuster last year in protest of drone strikes.
What we see developing here is what I expect to see more of from Rand. He will talk anti-government trash, when pollsters tell him it will play well with the masses, but even here there will be limitations on the trash talk, beyond what the pollsters say. If a vote is close, as it was in the NSA case, and Rand wants the support of the Republican establishment during  his presidential bid, then he is going to have to vote the establishment way, when his vote is important. They won't care what he does when a vote is in the bag, but they will expect Rand to vote establishment when it counts.

In other words, Rand will vote libertarian only when it doesn't matter and isn't important.



  1. "Curiously, it is the left rather than libertarians who see the smoke in Rand's statement. Perhaps, it is because the left is more involved with politics"

    That's because some of these idiot so-called libertarian Rand followers are going with wishful thinking. It's all emotion with them. No thinking involved.

    "In other words, Rand will vote libertarian only when it doesn't matter and isn't important."

    So what the hell good is he?

  2. OOhh the shock! Another politician is the same as all of the others... A different shade of lipstick, but still a pig. When we all simply check out of the system and live our lives this will stop. Play the game and you always lose, when you think you've won.