Holder Clarifies View on U.S. Drone Strikes


Siobhan Hughes and Jared A. Favole
Wall Street Journal
March 7, 2013

Attorney General Eric Holder sent a letter Thursday to Sen. Rand Paul to clarify the Obama administration’s view on the use of lethal force on American soil, an issue that provoked the Kentucky Republican to wage a nearly 13-hour filibuster against the president’s nominee to lead the Central Intelligence Agency.

Mr. Holder’s letter was described by White House Press Secretary Jay Carney: “Does the president have the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on American soil? The answer is no,” Mr. Carney said, reading an excerpt during a news briefing.

The letter by Mr. Holder could clear the way for a vote on President Barack Obama’s choice for CIA director, John Brennan. It is a more unequivocal statement of a view Mr. Holder advanced under questioning Wednesday at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.

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