Ron Wyden sole Senate Democrat to back Paul's filibuster

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March 7, 2012

By Maresa Strano

Ron Wyden (D-OR) stood alone among Senate Dems in defense of Rand Paul's marathon filibuster on March 6.

SALEM, Oregon: On March 6, 2013, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) led a 13-hour filibuster of President Obama's CIA Director nominee, John Brennan. Paul started the filibuster in order to highlight his concerns about the administration's drone policies. In particular, Paul said he was concerned about whether a drone could be used to kill an American citizen within the United States border, without any due process involved. Paul and other civil liberties activists have been critical that President Obama did not offer a clear response to the question. A total of 14 senators joined Paul in the filibuster -- 13 Republicans and one Democrat, Ron Wyden, of Oregon.[1][2][3] Wyden was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1996, and is considered a "rank-and-file Democrat,"[4] based on an analysis of bill sponsorship by GovTrack.

Democrat Dick Durbin (IL) also spoke, but only to ask questions and wasn't officially a part of the filibuster. Wyden said the following during the filibuster, "I want it understood that I have great respect for this effort to really ask these kinds of questions. And Senator Paul has certainly been digging into these issues in great detail." He went on to say, "The executive branch should not be allowed to conduct such a serious and far-reaching program by themselves without any scrutiny because that’s not how American democracy works. That’s not what our system is about."[5][6][7]

According to the website Breitbart, there were 30 Republican senators who did not support the filibuster.[8][9]

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