Rand Paul says he might sue government
June 9th, 2013
10:45 AM ET
2 years ago

Rand Paul says he might sue government

Washington (CNN) – Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, said Sunday he's looking into suing the federal government in the wake of what has been a tumultuous week for the Obama administration and National Security Agency.

"I'm going to be seeing if I can challenge this at the Supreme Court level. I'm going to be asking the Internet providers and all of the phone companies; ask your customers to join me in a class-action lawsuit," Paul said on FOX News Sunday.

"If we get 10 million Americans saying, 'We don't want our phone records looked at' then maybe someone will wake up and things will change in Washington."

The controversy began this week after multiple published reports said the NSA has been mining the phone and Internet records of both U.S. citizens and people around the world in a quest to prevent terrorist attacks.

President Obama addressed the issue Friday, saying the information gathered is extremely broad and that the government isn't monitoring the content of the data or people's names unless they have probable cause and a warrant.

But Paul said this data collection is by no means a modest invasion of privacy and in fact may even weaken America's counterterrorism operations.

"We are looking through so much data that I think it makes our fight against terrorism worse," Paul said.

In the end, Paul - known as a strong proponent of civil liberties - said this intelligence-gathering strategy is simply a step too far.

"I think the American people are with me and I think if you talk to young people who use computers on a daily basis, they are absolutely with me," Paul said.


Filed under: NSA • Rand Paul
soundoff (177 Responses)
  1. Paula

    where do I sign

    June 9, 2013 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  2. doc duo

    Thank you Mr. Rand Paul for having the guts to speak up and do something about things... I love America and truly don't understand that Congress doesn't back you more!
    Keep up protecting us. Thanks again.

    June 9, 2013 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  3. jack

    count me in to RAND!!! this president sucks. or should i say this imposter illegal. i see from a few comments on here there are still some people that should go down with him. because at this point and time they are still using the word racist lol. what some people will believe...

    June 9, 2013 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  4. Jose79845

    If Rand Paul chooses for freedom to use marijuana to prevent cancer then I'll vote for him. Otherwise he is just another blow hard.

    June 9, 2013 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  5. Mark

    I'm in, the Patriot Act should have expired. I was against it when Bush put it into play and against it now. I knew it would go against the balance as it has. Therefore the only way the shut it down or revamp it, is to bring a law suit against it. I'm in!!! As it has gone beyond the scope of it's intended use! The rest of you "so called" intellects who have posted contrary ought to see the full purpose and need of the lawsuit. Something needs to be done or it will continue to have a domino effect and get worse until you then when be crying foul.

    June 9, 2013 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  6. Steve

    Where do I sign!!!! Everyone Verizon customer should put their name on the plaintiff list.

    June 9, 2013 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  7. Paul Williamson

    Rand Paul is either a hypocrite or an idiot. He voted for continuation of the Patriot Act, first administered by Bush and then Obama. Congress passed it; the President enforces the law. If he wants to change the law, have him initiate new legislation.

    June 9, 2013 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  8. texasnotea

    This guy is a bonafied tea party example of incompetence. The Tea party is soooo mad we have a black President they will say and do anything to get attention and try to discredit him. Only a mor-on would suggest doing what this guy is doing. You tea baggers should really be proud of this guy'

    June 9, 2013 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  9. sonkarlay

    they are the same ppl that said what the government was doing after the boston bombing, let the government do it job, if u don't have anything to hid then don't worry

    June 9, 2013 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  10. John Reagan

    Let me get this straight...Randal has been in office since 2011 and doesn't remember voting to expand our internal surveillance? Do we really want a potential presidential candidate that can't remember what he did and did not vote for and has no idea of the consequences of his actions? Maybe he should visit his dad's vision clinic and get a new pair of spectacles.

    June 9, 2013 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  11. ThinkAgain

    @Joseph: "And I hope he runs for president in 2016."

    Me, too, it will split the GOP, ensuring a Dem victory.

    June 9, 2013 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  12. rs

    Mr. Paul- you ARE the Government- Sue yourself! If you somehow think you can really say this is news (Remember Mr. Bush, Mr. Ashcroft and the USA PATRIOT Act?), you either are a fool or think American citizens are.

    June 9, 2013 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  13. ThinkAgain

    @Brenda: "Count me in. I am a member and donor of a Tea Party and receive e-mails from many conservative groups. I am 66 years old, in the ministry, and was audited last year for the first time in my life. Coincidence? I don't think so."

    One of the most liberal people I know was audited last year, as are countless liberals every year. Stop whining, Brenda, and grow up!

    June 9, 2013 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  14. ThinkAgain

    Brenda and other right-wing whiners need to grow up.

    June 9, 2013 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  15. vikingwoman

    If any1 thinks this grandstand of Rand Paul's is to benefit the citizens of this country, it's not! He's simply jumping on a "bandwagon" he can politicizie for his own gain, aka. his presidential ambitions! If any1 really thinks we have Any privacy in cyber space in a tech savvy world, you are seriously deluding yourself! I, for 1, have no problem w/any1 (employer, school, police, government) checking my phone or computer, because I have nothing to hide!!

    June 9, 2013 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  16. rs

    I am certainly in favor of this. Obama and his admin, have no business looking at or listening to people's private conversations.
    ___________________
    You obviously know nothing. The NSA computers are collecting the numbers, duration and foreign connections. No recording.

    June 9, 2013 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  17. ThinkAgain

    @rs: "rs
    Mr. Paul- you ARE the Government- Sue yourself! If you somehow think you can really say this is news (Remember Mr. Bush, Mr. Ashcroft and the USA PATRIOT Act?), you either are a fool or think American citizens are."

    Rant and the GOP and all the teatards COUNT on Americans being foolish, scared and easily manipulated.

    That's there base – and it's why they don't want to invest in education: And educated populace is harder to control.

    June 9, 2013 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  18. pra

    Some ppl want their rights taken away,so be it . You can't fix STUPID !!!!

    June 9, 2013 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  19. Ted

    I'm IN

    June 9, 2013 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  20. Fearless Freep

    Rand Paul voted for the Patriot act and now he is going to sue ?
    Grandstanding hypocrite and idiot.
    Stop drinking the tea, its poison.

    June 9, 2013 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  21. al

    Obama is behind all these atrocities, remember Let's get EVEN!
    Where do I sign on

    June 9, 2013 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  22. enuff

    So much for trying to protect the budget...let's encourage classaction lawsuits and have a senator collect on it.

    June 9, 2013 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  23. Kenny K

    Rand Paul, you are the government, or part of the government.

    June 9, 2013 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  24. Kenny K

    @Brenda: "Count me in. I am a member and donor of a Tea Party and receive e-mails from many conservative groups. I am 66 years old, in the ministry, and was audited last year for the first time in my life. Coincidence? I don't think so."
    _______________________________
    Did you end up owing additional taxes after the audit. If you did, you might have been filing incorrect tax returns in the past too. -CPA, CGMA

    June 9, 2013 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  25. Matt

    For those that say "remember, you voted for this," if you just took a minute to look at the reauthorization vote of the Patriot Act, you'd see that Rand, Mike Lee, and 10 democrats were the only ones who voted against it. Just FYI.

    June 9, 2013 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
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