Bill Kristol Says Senator Rand Paul Has Decided to Be a 'Liberal Democrat'

| MAY 25, 2015 | 4:37 PM
Bill Kristol Keith Ellison

The Weekly Standard's Bill Kristol called out 2016 presidential candidate Rand Paul after his “filibuster” during the Senate showdown over the PATRIOT Act last week.

Kristol's comments were part of a roundtable discussion on ABC News' “This Week” about the Senate's failure to pass legislation Friday evening that would extend several parts of the USA PATRIOT Act past the June 1 deadline. Among the provisions set to expire is Section 215, which provided for the secret collection of data of millions of Americans' private communications.

Kristol said:

“Rand Paul has now decided he wants to be a liberal Democrat... and Rand Paul thinks that's going to sell in the Republican primary. I think he's deeply misguided about that, but I guess he sincerely believes it and he's welcome to make the case.”

Kristol was replying to a remark by Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), who not only agreed with Paul on ending the National Security Agency's unwarranted spying programs, but noted that he was currently working with the Kentucky senator on several bills involving civil asset forfeiture reform and mandatory minimum sentencing:

“I've been proud to stand with him at press conferences on these very issues... because at the end of the day for me it's about trying to do the best we can by our Constitution and the American people.”

“We might cut the cake differently on taxes policy, but on these basic core issues of freedom, we agree.”

Clearly inspired by that, Kristol took it one step further, adding:

“Keith doesn't stand with Rand, that's not fair to Keith. Rand stands with Keith.”

As a result of Paul's filibusters, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced that he will hold a special floor session on Sunday, May 31, in a last-minute attempt to save the controversial national security law.

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