Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) held the senate floor for a full eight hours, discussing his various concerns over constitutional violations which have stripped from Americans by the Patriot Act. Under the controversial Patriot Act, the Federal Government can obtain personal information, including telephone and internet records, on anyone – without warrant. Sen. Rand Paul has received bipartisan support for his criticism of government overreach and privacy violations.
“I think sometimes my party gets all caught up in the Second Amendment, which is fine, but we donâ€™t protect the Fourth Amendment enough,” said the Kentucky Senator. Paul’s opposition to renewing the patriot act, despite being heavily criticized is based on constitutional guarantees.
These are some comparisons between our constitutional rights and how they are infringed upon by the Patriot Act:
Amendment IV: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Patriot Act Change: The Government may search and seize American’s papers and effects without probable cause or warrant to assist terror investigation. Paul stated, “Every American is somehow said to be under suspicion because we’re collecting the records of every American. It has to stop.”
Amendment VI: In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial
Patriot Act Change: The government may jail Americans indefinitely without a trial.
In response to Sen. Paul’s defense of the American Constitution, many Republican have called him a “liberal Democrat” and an “ideologue.” Presidential candidates Marco Rubio, Lindsey Graham, Chris Christie and Jeb Bush have all come out to support extending the Patriot Act, the intentional suspension of the Bill of Rights.
There is no language in the constitution pertaining to rights going away when people become fearful, yet here we have an example of the Republican majority attacking a fellow Republican for nothing more than supporting our Constitution.