When Rand Paul defends Trump and critiques the office of the special prosecutor, he shows he’s learned something.
Rand Paul defends Trump and, in so doing, publicly repudiates his thinking in the nineties that allowed for Ken Starr. The Clinton Presidency was corrupt and degenerate, but that doesn’t mean that a special prosecutor was the answer. (And there still are some who believe or suspect that Ken Starr turned away from serious crimes to use Monica Lewinsky as a distraction. He “drifted” from his original mission in order to sabotage it.)
Here’s Rand Paul on Fox News:
“How did you feel about Ken Starr in the 90s?” […] Bill Hemmer asked Paul, referring to the independent counsel appointed to investigate Clinton during his presidency.
“You know, I may or may not have been as consistent back then, to tell you the truth,” Paul said. “But I’ve come to believe that now these special prosecutors have too much power.”[…]
“We never should have had Mueller in the first place because we’ve given too much power to a prosecutor who’s no longer looking at Russia, he’s looking at some kind of personal dealings with the president’s lawyer,” Paul said.
Some publications are even more negative. Here’s Esquire’s headline: “Not Even Fox News Can Tolerate Rand Paul’s Hypocrisy About Robert Mueller.”
Now that the FBI has raided the house and office of longtime Trump lawyer and certified genius brain Michael Cohen, the President and his allies have moved to the battle stations. […]
Trump suggested in a Tuesday morning tweet that the raid marked the death of attorney-client privilege, even though there is a well-known “crime-fraud exception.” That takes effect when the attorney in question is suspected of participating in a criminal conspiracy. And then cometh Rand Paul, everyone’s favorite neighbor, to announce it’s not just Special Counsel Robert Muller. Now all special prosecutors are bad:
Credit to Fox News’ Bill Hemmer, who immediately snapped back with a question about whether Paul had so many misgivings about Special Prosecutor Ken Starr. In the ’90s, when Rand Paul was an ophthalmologist volunteering with this dad’s Senate campaign, Starr investigated President Bill Clinton for anything and everything until he discovered the Monica Lewinsky affair and Clinton’s accompanying lies.
Paul couldn’t quite squirm his way out of that question:
PAUL: You know, I may or may not have been as consistent back then, to tell you the truth.
Paul gave a straightforward answer saying that he’s changed his mind. He had come to agree with Justice Antonin Scalia who denied special prosecutors were Constitutional, as reported back in 1988 by the New York Times:
Justice Antonin Scalia, in a passionate 38-page dissent, said the Court had subverted the Constitution’s separation of powers in what he called ”one of the most important opinions the Court has issued in many years.” Scalia Dissents From Bench
Summarizing his dissent aloud from the bench, which is rarely done, he said in a nine-minute statement that ”what is at issue in this case is purely executive power, quintessentially executive power to prosecute,” and that the law had an ”intimidating effect” on Presidential advisers in disputes with Congress.
It makes sense that as Rand Paul grew older and wiser, he saw that Antonin Scalia was right.
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