Senator and presidential candidate Rand Paul has been staging an old-fashioned filibuster, staging a marathon speech and holding the Senate floor in opposition to the renewal of the Patriot Act, which authorizes certain government surveillance of citizens.
The Senate has pretty much replaced the old “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” actual filibuster with the mere threat of a filibuster, so that bills typically require a 60 vote super-majority that would be enough to shut off debate should a filibuster actually occur. Sen. Paul, though, has too few allies on this subject, so he is going the “Mr. Smith” route. He has only a few allies helping him hold the floor, and there is enough support for the Patriot Act to shut off debate, which will probably happen at 1:00 p.m. today.
So do you “stand with Rand”? [Read more…]