Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., told radio host Aaron Klein that the Obama administration may have made promises about drones over U.S. soil, but “there still exists a question” on exactly how the White House does plan to use the unmanned, armed vehicles.
“There is a difference between being in combat and not being in combat,” Paul told Klein. “For example, if you’re an American and you’re in Afghanistan and you’re fighting with the Taliban and you’re shooting at us, there’s not going to be any due process in that situation. … You fire back.
“The question is: What happens when you’re not involved in combat, but you’re thought to be conspiring to attack the United States?”
Paul was speaking Sunday on “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio” on New York’s WABC Radio.
“I personally would prefer a type of scenario where we try people for treason,” Paul suggested. “There are Americans who have gone to the other side, but so we know that there is a process in place to determine their innocence or guilt, I would try them for treason. If they don’t come home, I would try them in abstentia. But I would have some kind of process other than flash cards and PowerPoint to determine who’s innocent and who’s guilty.”
Paul also talked about his proposed Preserving Freedom from Unwarranted Surveillance Act, which would limit drone use over American soil.
“I’m very concerned about the proliferation of surveillance drones in the United States,” Paul said. “I think that we have to limit the government in their ability to observe our lives. We have to have some privacy in our country. So if there is some kind of surveillance they want to do with drones, I think they should go to a judge and get a warrant. I don’t want them watching us everywhere we are.”
Paul explained he’d like to see law enforcement agencies demonstrate to a judge probable cause before sending a spy drone into the sky.
“Judge’s warrants are a good safety guard against excessive government and excessive government surveillance,” Paul said.
Klein also talked with Paul about the Benghazi and IRS scandals and whether or not it’s justified to start talking about “impeachment” yet.
Audio of the interview can be heard below: