Senator slams administration on Benghazi, IRS, AP phone tap scandals
Paul Joseph Watson
May 14, 2013
Senator Rand Paul responded to the barrage of scandals to hit the Obama administration, from Benghazi, to the IRS targeting conservatives, to the Justice Department spying on Associated Press reporters, by accusing President Obama of being “drunk on power.”
Scoffing at an upcoming House Committee on Ways & Means inquiry into how the IRS targeted those who mentioned the Constitution, the bill of rights, or even making “America a better place to live,” Kentucky Senator Paul said he would introduce a resolution today calling for the IRS agents involved to be fired for abusing their power in targeting people for their political activities.
“The President says he’s going to do something if they’re guilty, well it sounds like there’s already been an investigation and no one’s been fired,” Paul told Fox News’ Sean Hannity. “I’m afraid he’s going to do about as much as he did after Benghazi,” he added, noting that those involved in the botched security operation still work for the State Department.
Accusing Obama of engaging in “faux outrage” over the IRS scandal, Paul said the President was “using the power of his government to investigate his enemies, he’s tapping the phones of the press, and it turns out last year he signed legislation that allows him to detain an American without a trial and send them to Guantanamo Bay.”
“This sounds like a President somewhat drunk on power, not cautious about how he uses power,” added Paul.
The Senator also responded to criticism over his claim that Obama is working “anti-American globalists plot[ting] against our Constitution,” a quote that was characterized by the Washington Post as “black helicopter stuff.”
“The one thing they can’t get away from is that there is a UN Small Arms Treaty, we’re not making it up, President Obama has sounded and acted in the UN as if he’s supportive, it is moving forward and we are trying to drum up support and publicity for people to say look we do not want to have Americans obey rules of the United Nations, it goes against our sovereignty, it goes against our Constitution,” said Paul, adding that he would continue to push the issue.
With the White House already reeling from its complicity in the Benghazi cover-up and the IRS controversy, it emerged last night that the so-called “most transparent administration” in history had, via the US Department of Justice, “secretly obtained two months of telephone records of reporters and editors for The Associated Press in what the news cooperative’s top executive called a “massive and unprecedented intrusion” into how news organizations gather the news.”
Although the government refuses to divulge why it sought the records, which included 20 separate telephone lines assigned to AP and its journalists in April and May of 2012, speculation suggests the move was a reprisal against a May 7, 2012 AP story which disclosed details of a CIA operation in Yemen to disrupt an airliner bomb plot, a story which was initially delayed at the request of government officials.
“There can be no possible justification for such an overbroad collection of the telephone communications of The Associated Press and its reporters,” said AP President and CEO Gary Pruitt in a letter to Attorney General Holder. “These records potentially reveal communications with confidential sources across all of the newsgathering activities undertaken by the AP during a two-month period, provide a road map to AP’s newsgathering operations, and disclose information about AP’s activities and operations that the government has no conceivable right to know. We regard this action by the Department of Justice as a serious interference with AP’s constitutional rights to gather and report the news.”
After the Justice Department responded by claiming it valued “the freedom of the press” and was “always careful and deliberative” in its actions, House Oversight Committee chairman Darrell Issa reacted by remarking, “This is obviously disturbing. Coming within a week of revelations that the White House lied to the American people about the Benghazi attacks and the IRS targeted conservative Americans for their political beliefs, Americans should take notice that top Obama Administration officials increasingly see themselves as above the law and emboldened by the belief that they don’t have to answer to anyone. I will work with my fellow House Chairmen on an appropriate response to Obama Administration officials.”
Watch a CNN report on the AP phone tap scandal below.