I just listened to Sen. Dan Coats, a Republican from Indiana and purported "Tea Party favorite," explaining on the Senate floor why opponents of warrantless spying are fools:
A portion of the public has been led to believe that big government is in their bedroom, it's in their house, it's in their car, it's in their phone, it tracks them wherever they go, they're collecting everything about yourself, what you buy at Costco, the movies you rent through Netflix…
I thought the Republicans were the ones who agreed big government was indeed a bad thing? Was not the purpose of the Tea Party movement to elect Republicans who were more vigorous and consistent in their opposition to big government?
And yet Coats—and many of his Republican colleagues—are joining with President Obama and Democratic leadership to continue to deprive Americans of their constitutional liberties.
Whether Sen. Rand Paul's brave stand succeeds or not, this sorry episode should serve as yet another unfortunate reminder that nearly all politicians who claim to take the side of the American people against unchecked federal power will eventually break our hearts.
Check back at Reason for the latest news on the PATRIOT Act vote.