Eric Holder Answers Rand Paul on Targeted Killing

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
March 7 2013 2:56 PM

"The Answer to That Question Is No."

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US Attorney General Eric Holder

Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images

Sen. Rand Paul covered many miles of territory in his filibuster yesterday, but after Sen. Ted Cruz arrived on the floor, a framework for the filibuster took shape. Cruz had asked Attorney General Eric Holder to answer a hypothetical question: Could an American citizen, in America, be taken out by a drone "while sitting at a cafe"? Holder blew off the question. "On the facts you have given me," he said, "this is a hypothetical, I would not think that in that situation the use of a drone or lethal force would be appropriate." When Cruz arrived in the Senate, he informed Paul of this offense, and Paul dug right in.

This hour, Holder has sent a letter to assuage Paul's concerns:

Screen shot 2013-03-07 at 2.11.04 PM

The letter was released while Paul sat in for a CNN interview—his second of the day. It was good enough for Paul to announce he was dropping his objection to John Brennan's nomination to lead the CIA.

David Weigel, a former Slate politics reporter, is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

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