Monthly Archives: February 2013

Rand Paul returns $600,000 to US Treasury from his Senate office budget

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U.S. Sen. Rand Paul is returning $600,000 to the U.S. Treasury, money he said he saved through frugally operating his Senate office in the past year.

“It’s the only budget I control. … It’s not enough, but it’s a start,” Paul said at a news conference Wednesday near Fourth and Liberty streets in downtown Louisville.

The $600,000, which amounts to about 17 percent of Paul’s $3.5 million office budget, was in addition to about $500,000 he saved two years ago, his first year in the Senate, Paul said.

He said the savings were realized by “watching every purchase,” including keeping close tabs on expenditures for “computers, paper, ink cartridges. Everything we buy.”

He said he also keeps close watch on travel expenditures and noted that, although he frequently flies between Washington and Kentucky, his staff seldom does. He said he also doesn’t pay his staff excessive salaries.

“We are frugal from top to bottom,” Paul said, adding that he believes the savings show he has been true to his campaign pledge to cut federal spending. “It’s not an enormous savings,” he said, but the savings would add up if purse strings were so closely watched throughout government.

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Super PAC pledges sizable sum, starts Facebook page to ‘draft’ Justin Amash for Senate race

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GRAND RAPIDS, MI — A political action committee hoping Rep. Justin Amash follows through on his reported interest in running for Michigan Sen. Carl Levin’s seat has pledged sizable financial support and set up a Facebook page to “draft” him in the race.

News broke last week Amash, a Cascade Township Republican, was “intrigued” by the idea of a run for Levin’s seat if the long-time senator decides against a seventh term.

Anonymous sources last week told the conservative National Review magazine Amash likely would run if Levin retires.

Levin, 78, is expected to announce soon whether he’ll seek reelection. A spokesman for Amash declined Thursday to comment on the report.

Liberty for All, a super PAC founded by 22-year-old millionaire John Ramsey, responded to the report by pledging a six- to seven-figure donation to Amash if he runs.

The group also set up a “Draft Justin for Michigan” Facebook page, which had more than 900 “likes” as of Monday afternoon.

Preston Bates, Liberty for All’s 24-year-old executive director and cofounder, said the Austin, Texas-based PAC sees Amash as the right man for the race.

The National Review first reported Liberty for All’s pledge.

“Justin is the most independent and transparent member of Congress,” Bates said.

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Rand Paul: Country Is Ready For A “Libertarian Republican Narrative”

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CHRIS WALLACE, “FOX NEWS SUNDAY” MODERATOR: Let me interrupt for a second, because I thought that you were objecting to drone strikes on American citizens on foreign soil as well. Is that not true?

SENATOR RAND PAUL (R-KENTUCKY): I’m primarily asking, and the primary question is: Americans on American soil, can the president kill them with a drone strike from his program? It’s blatantly illegal and I would think most Americans would want to be — have their day in court.

And so, I disagree with Senator Graham. If you live in America, you ought to get your day in court before hellfire missile comes down on your house.

WALLACE: But I’m confused, sir, why would we need a drone strike? I mean, the reason for that is because we don’t have people on the ground. If we knew where an al Qaeda operative was –

PAUL: You would think.

WALLACE: — American or foreign, on U.S. soil, wouldn’t we just go catch him?

PAUL: You would think.

But here’s Brennan’s response. He says the authorization to use force in 2001 in Afghanistan has no geographical limits. So, when he says that, our first question is — gosh, he is implying he could do it in America. So, we sent him a written question.
Senator Wyden asked him a verbal question: can you kill an American on American soil? And he won’t answer.

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Rand Paul Asks Serious Questions about Targeted Killings

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The Politico went to some effort, it seems, to dismiss Rand Paul’s concerns about the drone program (as well as his threat to hold John Brennan’s nomination if and when it gets out of the Senate Intelligence Committee).

But Paul’s two letters on the subject are actually far more serious than those mocking them make out (the first one also brings the tally of congressional requests for the targeted killing memos to 19).

For example, Paul is one of the few people asking any questions about non-US citizens.

Do you believe that the president has the power to authorize lethal force, such as a drone strike, against a U.S. citizen on U.S. soil? What about the use of lethal force against a non-U.S. person on U.S. soil?

He also asks how the National Security Act and Posse Comitatus might play into a domestic strike.

Do you believe that the prohibition on CIA participation in domestic law enforcement, first established by the National Security Act of 1947, would apply to the use of lethal force, especially lethal force directed at an individual on a targeting list, if a U.S. citizen on a targeting list was found to be operating on U.S. soil? What if the individual on the targeting list was a non-U.S. person but found to be operating on U.S. soil? Do you consider such an operation to be domestic law enforcement, or would it only be subject to the president’s wartime powers?

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Rand Paul Made Marco Rubio Look Establishment

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Sen. Rand Paul’s fiery denunciation of Beltway business as usual showed why the mainstream of the Republican Party has such a hard time dealing with the Tea Party. People like Rand Paul and his father, former Rep. Ron Paul, make other Republicans look like go-along, get-along career politicians.

You didn’t even need to have the sound on Tuesday night to notice the difference between the televised address of Sen. Marco Rubio, the Florida senator who gave the official Republican response to President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address, and the one broadcast via the Internet by Paul, the Kentucky senator who spoke on behalf of Tea Party Express.

Although Rubio himself was elected with Tea Party support, he looked like a presidential wannabe. He stood before a grand window framed by heavy brocade curtains and an American flag, with a family picture artfully placed in the backdrop. Even his pale blue tie, by chance, resembled the president’s.

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5 Reasons 2/23/2013 is Going to Be a Day of Resistance

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Last year, when a Republican candidate should have waltzed to victory, Mitt Romney got his teeth knocked in by a man who could fairly be called the single least competent American President in history. This beating had very real consequences.

1) Barack Obama feels empowered: Liberals are always vulgar in defeat and hubristic in victory, but Barack Obama has become so toweringly arrogant that it wouldn’t be a surprise if he were getting himself fitted for a crown. He’s acting as if he expects to have anything and everything he wants handed to him on a silver platter and if anything gets in his way, he’ll simply shred the Constitution, ignore the law, or issue an executive order and dare the Republican Party to do something about it.

2) The Republicans In Congress have lost their nerve: Republicans on the Hill have turned into a pack of cringing dogs since the election. They’ve lost the will to fight on spending cuts, they’re seriously considering an amnesty for illegal aliens and Karl Rove and his establishment pals at American Crossroads are now planning to target conservatives in Republican primaries. There’s not a single issue where you can trust the Republicans in Congress to hold the line because they’ve lost confidence in themselves, the people who elected them, and conservatism.

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Sen. Toomey names Sen. Mike Lee as vice chairman of Senate steering committee

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(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) named U.S. Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) as vice chairman of the Senate Steering Committee, a caucus of conservative senators that includes the majority of the Republican Conference. Sen. Lee will begin serving in this role immediately.

“Sen. Mike Lee is a knowledgeable and principled movement conservative, and I’m very excited he is taking on the position of vice chairman,” said Sen. Toomey, the chairman of the Steering Committee. “It has been a privilege to work with Sen. Lee over the past two years and I have complete confidence that he will continue to excel as a leader in this role. With Mike and the other Steering members we will continue to work to advance innovative conservative principles.”

“I am honored to serve as vice chairman of the Steering Committee and will work alongside Sen. Toomey to promote strong conservative values in the Senate,” said Sen. Lee.

Republican Congressman Ridicules His Party For Lame Hashtag

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Rep. Justin Amash says Republican leadership are wrong to try to blame Obama for the sequester — especially with such a terrible Twitter hashtag. “I think it’s kind of 2008.”

WASHINGTON — Rep. Justin Amash has a message for the masterminds of his leadership’s recent fascination with the use of Twitter hashtags: forget the marketing games and get back to the substance.

“I occasionally use hashtags, but I think it’s kind of 2008,” said Republican Rep. Justin Amash, a conservative Republican who has become one of the party’s more effective users of Twitter and social media. “It’s just a marketing ploy a lot of times, and they hope it takes off,” he added. “Some of them do take off, but I don’t think it’s that frequent that they do.”

Within the past month, House Republican leaders have regularly unveiled new hashtags for each new messaging push: “#NoBudgetNoPay,” “#RequireAPlan,” and, most recently, “#Obamaquester” have all been broadcast by flacks on Twitter and affixed to lecterns at press conferences.

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Immigration Reform 2013: The GOP Message Should Be to Let the Best Workers In

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In the aftermath of the 2012 elections, commenters proclaimed that the Republican Party faces a near-certain death due to forthcoming demographic changes over the next two decades. In response to this, it was said that the Republican Party would have to soften on certain issues, including their staunch opposition to immigration reform and desire to deport illegal immigrants. It should come as no surprise that the party as a whole was seen as extreme on immigration when presidential candidate Mitt Romney staked out a position to the right of gunslinging Texas Governor Rick Perry.

Going back to the New Deal, Democrats have historically brought together various interest groups and pitted them against Republicans by offering more free stuff. With Hispanics, Democrats have succeeded in doing this by portraying themselves as softer on illegal immigration and more likely to offer citizenship to immigrants than Republicans…

…All is not lost for the Grand Old Party. Young voters have been energized by the message of liberty presented by candidates such as Justin Amash (R-Mich.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Thomas Massie (R-Ky.), and Ron (Ret.) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.). This message crosses against demographic lines, offering a clear alternative to the destructive big government policies that establishment politicians in both parties have shoved down the throats of the American people….

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Speaking for Tea Party, U.S. Senator Rand Paul spreads the blame

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(Reuters) – U.S. Senator Rand Paul blamed Republicans and Democrats for heavy government spending on Tuesday in an address responding to President Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech on behalf of the small-government, fiscally conservative Tea Party movement.

“Both parties have been guilty of spending too much, of protecting their sacred cows, of backroom deals in which everyone up here wins, but every taxpayer loses,” Paul said.

Paul, the son of former Republican Texas Representative Ron Paul, a libertarian and three-time presidential candidate, won his Kentucky Senate seat with strong support from the Tea Party.

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