Texas native and U.S. Senator from Kentucky (R) – Rand Paul – announced in his appearance on Fox News’ Hannity last Friday night that he will file a class-action lawsuit against the Obama administration over the National Security Agency’s (NSA) collection of data through domestic surveillance programs. Paul is filing the lawsuit as a citizen, and is asking Americans to join him in this effort by joining the lawsuit.
According to the Lexington-Herald’s Sam Youngman, more than 250,000 people had signed on to the class-action lawsuit by Saturday, Jan. 4. The Kentucky Senator, and potential 2016 presidential candidate, has not yet filed suit, but he said he plans to do so this month when the complaint is ready.
“We want to overwhelm the government,” Paul said. “And we want to show publicly that hundreds of thousands of people object to the government looking at our records without our permission.”
Paul was dismissive of President Obama’s recent pledge to review and reform NSA domestic spying habits, saying he was concerned the president would “whitewash” the results. “This has to be decided publicly by the Supreme Court,” Paul added. “The president doesn’t get to create the law, write the law and decide and adjudicate it.”
In October the Obama administration asked the Supreme Court not to look into the NSA’s spy program, and on Nov. 18 the justices, without comment, declined to entertain a challenge from the Electronic Privacy Information Center seeking to halt the domestic spy program.
The senator, and key ally of Ted Cruz, explained that he hopes to take the suit against President Barack Obama and the NSA to the U.S. Supreme Court, and led them decide on the issue of whether or not it’s constitutional to have a single warrant apply to millions of people.
Paul encouraged the show’s viewers to join his suit through his Facebook page or the website of RAND PAC, his political action committee. The senator said he wants to sign up anyone who wants “to say to the government and to the NSA, ‘No, you can’t have our records without our permission or without a warrant specific to an individual.”