At a Washington, D.C. event hosted by the Foreign Policy Initiative, Senator Ted Cruz defended the use of drones but also expressed some concern. "I'm worried about what I would call video game warfare," said Cruz in response to a question about drones.
"Look, it is a great question and it's one of the realities of changing warfare--is drones have changed how combat is conducted, it's changed our capacity," said Cruz, responding to the question. "There are advantages to that and risks to that. Now, drones it seems to me, are a tool. They are a tool that clearly can have beneficial impacts, in particular allowing us to project force without risking U.S. soldiers. But there are dangers as well."
Cruz continued, "I am concerned a) domestically about the use of drones here at home and in particular we had fairly lively disagreements with the administration a year ago, asking the very simple question about whether a drone can use force against a U.S. citizen who doesn't pose an imminent threat here at home. And the administration repeatedly and to my mind inexplicably refused to acknowledge that the Constitution prevents the federal government from using a drone against a U.S. citizen at home if he or she doesn't pose an imminent threat. I think that's a real concern. There are civil liberties concerned to American citizens here at home and privacy concerns that trouble me.
"There are also concerns from the perspective of national security. No administration has used drones as aggressively as has the Obama administration. And I'm worried about what I would call videogame warfare."
There is a shortage of drones in the theater where the U.S. is engaged against ISIS. They are needed in another theater of operations, one where we do have troops engaged and are committed to getting them out.
The U.S. is running up against a shortage of surveillance drones to conduct reconnaissance of the various battlefields where it is engaged. Right now, the theater where its combat troops are directly engaged is getting priority … as it most certainly should be.
Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus reiterated that he believes Rand Paul’s 13-hour filibuster over the Obama administration’s drone policy was a “unifying moment” for the GOP and that the party is "totally on board" with the libertarian senator.
"The GOP of old has grown stale and moss-covered,” Kentucky senator Rand Paul said Thursday to the Conservative Political Action Conference. “I don’t think we need to name any names here, do we?” he added coyly.
Before Rand Paul even arrived at the Gaylord National Harbor convention center in Maryland for his Thursday afternoon CPAC address, the stage was set for his raucous reception. Outside the convention hall, a team of eager young volunteers began passing out t-shirts, stickers, and posters emblazoned with the catchiest political slogan since “Yes We Can.”
Senator Ted Cruz, joining Rand Paul's filibuster on the floor of the Senate:
"And I'm pretty certain--for the record, I can confirm that no teleprompter was in front of the senator from Kentucky's desk," said Cruz, taking a shot at President Obama's frequent use of Teleprompters. "Senator Rand Paul, Jimmy Stewart would be proud, sir."
Senator Ted Cruz, joining in support of Rand Paul's filibuster, said today was the first day he had the chance to speak on the Senate floor. "It don't get no better than this," Cruz said, quoting a beer commercial: