(Washington Times) -- In my New York Times best-selling novel “Heroes Proved,” the president of the United States orders the execution of an American citizen in the United States by using precision munitions fired from a remotely piloted aircraft, or RPA — incorrectly referred to by our media as a drone. When the book came out last year, some critics derided the idea of a U.S. president issuing an executive order to kill Americans in our homeland as “over the top” and “unthinkable.” One even said the idea was “unfathomable.” Thanks to Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky Republican, we now know the Obama administration already has contemplated such action. That ought to be troubling to every one of us.
On March 6, Mr. Paul took to the floor of the U.S. Senate in a 13-hour effort to block the confirmation of John O. Brennan as CIA director until the administration handed over its “legal, procedural and constitutional justification” for such “extrajudicial executions.” The filibuster failed, and the Senate confirmed Mr. Brennan the following day. Yet the issues of constitutional protections for American citizens and the limits of executive power aren’t going away. Nor should they.