Ted Cruz forces Eric Holder to verbally admit killing U.S. citizens with drones is unconstitutional

Ted CruzSen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) backed Attorney General Eric Holder into a corner Wednesday on the constitutionality of a drone strike killing a U.S. citizen in U.S. territory.

Cruz was referring to a letter Holder wrote to Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) that read, “It is possible, I suppose, to imagine an extraordinary circumstance in which it would be necessary and appropriate under the Constitution and applicable laws of the United States for the president to authorize the military to use lethal force within the territory of the United States.”

But by the end of Cruz’s interrogation, Holder finally conceded it was not in fact constitutional.

Cruz first asked Holder in front of the senate Judiciary Committee, “If an individual is sitting quietly in a cafe in the U.S., in your legal judgment, does the Constitution allow a U.S. citizen on U.S. soil to be killed by a drone?”

“If that individual is not posing an imminent and immediate threat of death or bodily harm,” he added.

Holder said, “On the basis of what you said, I don’t think you can arrest that person.”

Cruz then tried to pose the question differently.

“If the person is suspected to be a terrorist,  you have abundant evidence that he is a terrorist and he is involved in terrorist plots but at the moment he is not pointing a bazooka at the Pentagon, does the Constitution allow a drone to kill that citizen?” he asked.

“I would not think that would be an appropriate use of any kind of lethal force,” Holder responded. “We would deal with that in a way we would typically deal with a situation like that.”

But before he could finish, Cruz asserted, ”My question wasn’t about appropriateness or prosecutorial discretion. It was a simple legal question.”

Later, when Cruz tried to move on from the subject after Holder refused to give a direct answer, Holder finally admitted, “Translate my ‘appropriate’ to ‘no.’ I thought I was saying ‘no’.”

“After much gymnastics, I am glad to know that it is the opinion of the Department of Justice that it would be unconstitutional,” Cruz finished.

Meanwhile, Senator Rand Paul was on the Senate floor filibustering John Brennan’s nomination to lead the CIA over the Obama administration’s refusal to say in writing that it would not send drones after American citizens. Multiple times during the filibuster the Texas Senator came on to give Paul encouragement and give him a break from speaking. Cruz praised Paul for his leadership on the issue of drone strike legality, calling him a “modern Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.”

“And my only regret is that there are not 99 of your colleagues here today standing with you in defense of the most fundamental principle in our Declaration of Independence and in our Constitution — namely that each of us is endowed with certain unalienable rights by our Creator and first among them is life,” Cruz told Paul toward the beginning of the filibuster. “The right to life and the right not to have life arbitrarily extinguished by our government without due process of law.”

Comments

Comments

  1. Roger Mitchell says:

    Yes Cruz pulled it out of Holder after Holder used every word or phrase and minuet he could to keep side stepping the question thats how this entire administration works , So much for transparency ! I still do not believe him I believe nothing these people in the Obama Administration ever says . Look at Benghazi still nothing and what 7 months now what a snow job.. II still want to know what the deal was with Putin and Obama and what Obama was going to become more flexable about after the elections ???

  2. I have watched Senator Ted (missle) Cruz eat Eric Holder alive several times. Cruz wouldn’t let him wiggle off of the hook as he has done numerious times to others. Thank goodness we still have a few young, brave people in Washington such as Senators Cruz and Paul that are trying to hold this country together. I hope they and others keep up the good work and not be discouraged with Obama’s apparent plan to destroy America as we used to know it. I SHOUT “Cruz for Prez.”

Polititainment

Jenner comes out as trans, Republican
Former Olympian and “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” star Bruce Jenner finally revealed that he identifies as a woman in his Friday night “20/20″ interview with Diane Sawyer, but it was a different announcement that had viewers freaking out. Sawyer asked if Jenner cheered when President Obama became the first president to even say the […]
Waka Flocka Flame endorses Hillary

Just days after announcing his own candidacy for president in 2016, Waka Flocka Flame is endorsing Hillary Clinton for the White House. The Atlanta rapper said during a recent interview with MTV News that he will vote for Clinton in the 2016 presidential election.

Obama honors New England Patriots

President Obama honored the Super Bowl Champion football team on the South Lawn, kicking off his remarks with a joke about the team's long since past "Deflate Gate" controversy.

Olivia Wilde endorses Hillary Clinton

Actress Olivia Wilde is "excited" by Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. The film star, who campaigned for then-Sen. Barack Obama in 2008, expressed her enthusiasm for the "political discussions" that result from election season during a recent interview with The Daily Beast.

Robert Downey Jr. walks out of interview

Robert Downey Jr. cut short a recent interview with British Channel 4 News reporter Krishnan Guru-Murthy when the journalist questioned the actor about a past statement regarding how being imprisoned impacted his political beliefs.

2016

Sen. Cornyn worried about Clinton transparency

On Jan. 20, 2009, the U.S. Senate was poised to nominate then-Senator Clinton as secretary of State by a unanimous consent vote, but Sen. Jon Cornyn (R-Tex.) objected, temporarily thwarting Clinton’s nomination.

Jeb Bush is on the Paleo diet

Jeb Bush is slimming down ahead of his likely 2016 bid for the White House. The former governor of Florida has lost about 30 pounds on the Paleo diet since December, according to a report in The New York Times.

NYT reporter: Hillary calls everything 'off-limits'

New York Times reporter Jeremy Peters said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" Thursday that Hillary Clinton ahead of her run for president in 2016 is dismissing every critical report about her as illegitimate and "off-limits."

Seth Meyers defends Hillary Clinton

Seth Meyers defended Hillary Clinton during Thursday's episode of "Late Night," dismissing allegations about the former secretary of State that will be laid out by the forthcoming anti-Clinton book "Clinton Cash."

Rick Perry disagrees with Christie on pot

Rick Perry is against legalizing marijuana--but, unlike Chris Christie, wouldn't "crack down" on states that choose to legalize.

Policy

Obamacare brings growth in food stamp enrollment
CHICAGO (AP) — President Barack Obama’s health care law has had a surprising side effect: In some states, it appears to be enticing more Americans to apply for food stamps, even as the economy improves. New, streamlined application systems built for the health care overhaul are making it easier for people to enroll in government benefit […]
DC gets mad at Gowdy and Buck over gun photo

Reps Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) and Ken Buck (R-Colo.) just dodged a run-in with the D.C. authorities.

The danger of policing through Facebook

These days, everything happens on social media--including solving crime.

Police seized 11-yr-old for defending legal pot

One Kansas school apparently found a child's earnest defense of marijuana legalization so threatening they called the police on his mother.

Support for Obamacare hits surprising high
Support for Obamacare has hit a two-year high, despite the tax season surprises that followed the law this year. According to a new Kaiser Health Tracking Poll released Tuesday, the percentage of people who say they support the healthcare law is greater than those who oppose it for the first time since the fall of 2012. […]