Rand Paul is the early ‘breakout’ leader from the GOP. One hopes the ‘elites’ don’t torpedo him.
Rand Paul was one of the few who actually grilled Hillary Clinton during the Benghazi hearing, and he was just as tough on John Kerry during his confirmation hearing. Glenn interviewed Senator Rand Paul on radio today to talk about his hard hitting exchanges with John Kerry.
US Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) questions US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as she testifies before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on the September 11, 2012 attack on the US mission in Benghazi, Libya, during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on January 23, 2013. Credit: AFP/Getty Images
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton faced a tough line of questioning Wednesday as lawmakers grilled her on the deadly terrorist attack that occurred in Benghazi, Libya on Sept. 11, 2012. No one posed tougher questions than Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who blasted the “inexcusable” failure of “leadership” Clinton displayed in the time leading up to the assault.
Paul told Clinton he was glad she had decided to take responsibility for the “worst tragedy since 9/11″ but that doesn’t excuse the State Department for ignoring cables from Benghazi asking for additional security and warning of extremist activity.
“Had I been president at the time, and I found that you did not read the cables from Benghazi, you did not read the cables from Ambassador Stevens, I would have relieved you of your post,” he said. “I think it’s inexcusable.”
He continued: “I would think that by anybody’s estimation, Libya has to have been one of the hottest of hotspots around the world. Not to know of the requests for securities really, I think, cost these people their lives. Their lives could have been saved if someone had been more available, had someone been aware of these things, more on top of the job.”
Paul went on to say that he does not suspect Clinton of “bad motives” but that doesn’t excuse her negligence in the situation, even it was wasn’t “willful.”
Watch Sen. Paul skewer Clinton during Wednesday’s Benghazi hearing: Watch
The senator followed up by asking Clinton whether she had any knowledge of the transfer of weapons to Turkey out of Libya. She denied having any knowledge of it, but took the question “for the record,” never denying it.
“To Turkey?” Clinton asked, perplexed. “I will have to take the question for the record, nobody’s ever raised that with me.”
“It’s been in news reports that ships have been leaving from Libya and that that they may have weapons,” Paul pressed. “And what I’d like to know is the annex that was closely, were they involved with procuring, buying, selling, obtaining weapons and were any of these weapons being transferred to other countries, any countries.”
“Well, senator, you will have to direct that question to the agency that ran the annex. I will see what information is available,” Clinton replied.
“You’re saying you don’t know,” Paul shot back.
“I don’t know. I don’t have any information on that,” she said.
Full Transcript of Interview With Glenn Beck (See Video):
GLENN: Let me go to Rand Paul who, Senator, I have to tell ya you are a ‑‑ you are several beams of sunshine right now. Thank you for what you’re doing in these hearings. Thank you for saying the tough things. I mean, you asked John Kerry this about Egypt. Go, play the question.
RAND PAUL: We’ve heard President Morsi’s comments about Zionists and Israelis being bloodsuckers and descendants of apes and pigs. Do you think it’s wise to send them F‑16s and Abram tanks?
KERRY: I think those comments are reprehensible.
GLENN: Oh, jeez. Stop. I can’t hear it. All he said was it’s reprehensible and he’s explained them. How do you explain pigs and apes? And then we look at them as any kind of ally. Were you satisfied with his answer?
RAND PAUL: Absolutely not. And I think at the very least, at the very least the weapons should be held up and for six months to a year see if they are going to be a stable government but really we don’t have the money to be doing it. All it does is make Israel’s job harder because if we give 20 F‑16s to Egypt, Israel thinks they have got to have 25 Neu new one and it’s an arms race that we’re funding both sides of. But it’s a real mistake to send it to countries who really don’t seem to be part of the civilized world.
GLENN: You know one of the things that I ‑‑ I mean, I’m becoming more libertarian every day, and I’m not an isolationist but I think we have made so many mistakes because we believe the enemy of the enemy is my friend.
RAND PAUL: Well, we did it. For ten years we support the mujahideen and guess who was part of the mujahideen? Bin Laden.
RAND PAUL: And so for about ten years, for an entire decade we supported radical jihad. We thought it was clever that we were for these radical Islamists because they hated the Soviets. Little did we know they also hate us. When they were turning on the Soviets, they turned on us.
GLENN: Right. But it’s insane to think that the enemy of my enemy is my friend and you’re going to get anywhere. And these guys, what is so frustrating for all of us who just watch this is these guys are not even saying the things ‑‑ you know, they were all the ones who were against wars, they’re against the, you know, the unilateral decision of this president is go to war, higgledy‑piggledy. You brought this up with John Kerry, and here’s your question and listen to his answer. Do you have it? Hang on just a second.
STU: Yeah, hang on.
GLENN: Hang on just a second. Hang on.
RAND PAUL: For when people disagree with you, they just go ahead and do it. In the early 1970s, you know, after Vietnam, you were quite critical of the bombing in Cambodia because I think you felt that it wasn’t authorized by congress. Has your opinion changed about the bombing in Cambodia?
GLENN: So good.
RAND PAUL: How’s Cambodia different than Libya?
KERRY: No, nor did my opinion change or has it ever altered about the war in Vietnam itself where I don’t believe, and I argued then.
RAND PAUL: Is Cambodia different than Libya?
KERRY: Well, Cambod‑ ‑‑ yeah, it is. Because it was an extension of a war that was being prosecuted without the involvement of congress after a number of years.
GLENN: What? How did you not just ‑‑
PAT: Oh, my gosh.
GLENN: How did you not laugh at that, Rand?
RAND PAUL: Well, see the whole thing is this is why foreign policy is so muddled. And it’s like he says, “I believe in absolutes.” Well, yeah, the Constitution is pretty clear about the separation of powers. It is a congressional power to declare war. And his answer basically was, “Well, yes, I agree with that except for when I don’t agree with that.”
PAT: Exactly. That was his answer. I mean, he didn’t phrase it like that, but that was the answer.
RAND PAUL: When it’s impractical, basically when congress opposes you, it becomes impractical. But, you know, the thing is, is when we were attacked in 1941, December 7th, the morning of December 8th the president came before congress and said, “We’ve been attacked,” and I think we voted almost unanimously to declare war on Japan.
RAND PAUL: And I think that’s what would happen in any way anytime when we were attacked. When we were attacked on 9/11, I would have gone to congress and I wouldn’t have done just an authorization of force, although I know it may be quibbling about a difference. I would have said we are declaring war on those who are ‑‑
GLENN: We should have.
RAND PAUL: ‑‑ these people.
GLENN: We should have. It would have cleared up an awful lot of things. We should have. The ‑‑ let me just switch gears here real quick on Hillary Clinton. You were almost, you were almost freedom porn the way you were ‑‑ I mean, I almost always ‑‑ almost turned the lights down in my office while you were addressing Hillary Clinton because you said to her, you would have fired her. And any sane person would say the same thing. We didn’t get a single thing out of Hillary Clinton on Benghazi. When Michael McCaul asked why wasn’t the ambassador even there on September 11th, he got gaveled. We didn’t get any answers, did we.
RAND PAUL: No. Well, the only answer we did get is we now know for certainty she did not read the pleas for help, she did not read any of the requests for security and I think that really to me is inexcusable. She says, oh, I get a million cables. I don’t care if she reads every cable from Bulgaria or Astonia, but from the top five most dangerous spots in the world, she should be reading those cables. And I likened it to being like a physician. A physician has triage, but I’m still in charge of it and I have to instruct the people in triage to get back people who are seriously sick. She needed to instruct her inferiors, the people who worked for her that any information about Libya needs to be on my desk and I need to see it.
GLENN: So where do we go from here? I mean, first of all John Kerry’s our next, our next Secretary of State. Do you think?
KERRY: Well, you know, the thing is I think that we don’t change at all. I asked him about Pakistan. I said, will you condition aid on them releasing Dr. Afridi who helped us to get Bin Laden, and he just frankly said no.
GLENN: Okay. This is crazy.
RAND PAUL: So he said he’d plead with them, and I said, look, they don’t understand anything but power. You have power over them because they want our money. At the very least if you’re going to give it to them, use it as leverage to get them to release this man.
PAT: Amazing too when you were talking about the F‑16s going to Egypt despite all they’ve said about Israel how he waffled on that. I mean, one thing after another. And this guy is probably almost for sure going to be our next Secretary of State.
GLENN: Oh, yeah.
PAT: It’s despicable.
GLENN: And he is ‑‑ I mean, he was born at a Waffle House.
PAT: Oh, yeah.
GLENN: I mean, there’s nobody more waffling than John Kerry.
RAND PAUL: Well, and it hasn’t been a month ago that President Morsi was at a prayer meeting with a radical Sheik.
GLENN: I know.
RAND PAUL: Standing next to him saying death to Israel and anybody who supports Israel. And so it’s like ‑‑
GLENN: And wait, wait. Don’t forget, and the new capital of the Caliphate will be Jerusalem.
RAND PAUL: Yeah.
GLENN: That was at that same meeting.
RAND PAUL: Yeah. So the thing is what we’ve elected or what they’ve gotten in Egypt is a very radical government that I think can’t be counted on not to attack Israel and we shouldn’t be giving them weapons. Absolutely. Until there’s some kind of stability, and even they we don’t have the money to be doing it anyway.
GLENN: Will anybody pay for the mistakes in Benghazi? Will we ever find out for sure what happened?
RAND PAUL: You know, that was my point in putting out that her resignation is her being held accountable and culpable for these mistakes because she wants to make it as if, “Oh, yeah, I’m responsible but I’m not accountable.”
RAND PAUL: And nobody was fired.
GLENN: That’s crazy.
RAND PAUL: And what really got me going on this is I think going back to the original 9/11, we did a huge investigation. We found out we had the 20th hijacker. We found out that one FBI agent requested 70 times for a permit or for a warrant and nobody would let him do it. We had all these mistakes and no one was fired. We spent trillions of dollars and no one was fired. A lot of these were human errors. And when humans make mistakes, it doesn’t make them bad people. I don’t think Hillary Clinton had bad motives. I don’t think she’s unpatriotic, but I think she made horrible decisions that really at some point make her I think not eligible to be in a position to make those decisions again.
GLENN: So one other, one other topic. Today or this week is the 40th anniversary of Roe versus Wade. It is absolutely incredible some of the stuff that is coming out now from the left on ‑‑ I mean, one, one on Salon Magazine, you have to read this. It’s an incredible article from a lefty that says, “You know, okay. I never ‑‑ when I was carrying my children, I never doubted that that was life inside of me, but ‑‑ this is a quote ‑‑ not all life is equal. We’re headed down a scary road with these people.
RAND PAUL: So much for equal rights, huh?
GLENN: Yeah, yeah.
RAND PAUL: So much for the whole idea that we are all the same, no matter what color our skin is, whether we have disabilities or not. But if you’re pretty small and you’re defenseless, then you don’t have any rights.
GLENN: Pretty frightening. You’re speaking at the March of ‑‑ the March for Life rally today?
RAND PAUL: Yeah, this will be my first time. I tried to get there last year but the TSA had other ideas for me last year.
GLENN: That’s right.
RAND PAUL: So this year I’m actually in Washington. So I don’t have to go through an airport to get to March For Life. But I’m excited about it, it’s a big crowd and I’m excited to be there in a couple of hours.
GLENN: Tell me quickly, square the libertarian point of view that there should be no regulation on anything you do.
RAND PAUL: Well, the thing is most libertarians believe in what’s called the nonaggression principle, that you can’t agress against other people. So once you define where life begins, if those in the womb are alive, all libertarians then would believe in the government preventing you from agressing against that individual. It all has to do with when does life begin.
GLENN: I will tell you Senator Rand Paul, I believe in my lifetime the first libertarian that I believe could be president of the United States. You make sense, you’re rational, you’re reasonable, and you look at the facts on the ground, where we are now and you’re not ‑‑ you’re not like, “Hey, let’s legalize heroin on, you know, Day Number 1.” It’s just you have to move slowly and move the country in the right direction and stand ‑‑ and still stand for your principles, which I think you do.
RAND PAUL: Glenn, I think also the country’s ready. The narrative is out there.
RAND PAUL: People know Republicans aren’t winning. We start out minus 170 electoral votes. We’re going to have to look to some different kind of candidate the next time around.
RAND PAUL: Because we just are getting to the point where we’re never going to win again unless we approach and embrace some kind of new candidacy.
GLENN: Well, I will tell you this: I think the GOP is the Whig party. I think the GOP is over. It just hasn’t caught up to the GOP yet. And I hope we don’t have to lose another presidential election for them to understand that. But the GOP is over. They have discredited themselves too much. They don’t stand for anything anymore except winning. And it’s despicable. Stand for principles and then win or lose based on those principles.
RAND PAUL: Absolutely. That’s how Reagan grew the party. He didn’t try to please everybody. He didn’t pander but he spoke, he spoke truth, and people came.
GLENN: Rand, thank you very much. I appreciate all your hard work and hope to see you again soon.
RAND PAUL: Thanks, Glenn.
GLENN: You bet. Senator Rand Paul.
Rand Paul is a man of conviction. Earlier in the week Rand Paul said to Chris Christie: Cool It With the Temper Tantrums and Grandstanding, Alright? – Where were you, Christie, and others when Sarah Palin’s kids were being attacked? And why is it okay for President and Team Obama to use kids when it suits them?… Double Standard!!