Speaking with Fox Business Network’s Stuart Varney on Thusday, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) blistered special counsel Robert Mueller, saying he” completely and fundamentally misunderstands our justice system,” and also took a shot at fellow libertarian Rep. Justin Amash, (R-MI), who said Congress should go forward with the impeachment of President Trump. Paul stated, “I don’t understand a libertarian who would take this investigation and say we should pursue it and impeach the president. It goes against everything libertarians are for.”
The exchange went like this:
Varney: What do you make of all this impeachment talk?
Paul: The thing that shocks me is that someone like Mueller, who is supposed to be esteemed and has been around for decades, completely and fundamentally misunderstands our justice system. The burden on the government is to prove that you’re guilty. Nobody proves that you’re innocent. You’re presumed to be innocent. So he’s out there, all over television, saying, “We never said, we never concluded the president was innocent.” Completely misunderstands our judicial system. You’re presumed to be innocent; they have to prove you’re guilty. He was not charged. He was not indicted, so he is innocent, and so it’s really wrong-headed but misunderstands our system for him to go around saying, “If he was innocent we would have said he was innocent.” That never happens in our country. Grand juries never issue a bill about innocence. They only either indict you or try to prove that you’re guilty. But you’re presumed to be innocent in our country and Mueller completely misunderstands that.
Varney: If we go with all the impeachment talk and investigations and subpoenas, and heaven knows what else, am I right in saying the government is essentially stalled, nothing gets done?
Paul: Yes, and I think people are sick and tired of this. You talk in my hometown to people who have been watching all this overwrought from some of the networks, it has become so partisan, so malevolent and hateful towards the president. People are sick of watching it, to tell you the truth. Can you imagine how sick they are gonna get if we get a year or two of some sort of partisan impeachment process? It’s going to be terrible for the country.
Varney: I think of you as a libertarian. Justin Amash is a libertarian, he’s a Republican, and he is saying, yeah, he was the first person to say, it’s in Congress’s court, go forward with impeachment, what do you make of that?
Paul: Libertarians like myself have for a long time said the intelligence community has too much power and that we’re very concerned that either CIA or FBI could be investigating Americans for political purposes. That’s long been our complaint. So I don’t understand a libertarian who would take this investigation and say we should pursue it and impeach the president. It goes against everything libertarians are for. We don’t like too much power. We don’t like the secret FISA court going after Americans. Foreigners are one thing, but always we’ve been very concerned about the FISA court being used against Americans. So I’ve been talking with the president. I spoke with him last night about how do we try to prevent this from happening to the next president or to the Americans at large? I think the president is open to trying to figure out a way, either legislatively or through executive order, we can try to prevent this abuse of power from happening again.
Varney: So you’re really involved in taking steps to make sure this does not get repeated?
Paul: Absolutely, while I’m a supporter of the president, I’m really a supporter of every American whether you’re a Republican donor, Democrat donor, activist politically, you should not be targeted by your government. I fear if this happens that from now on the new normal will be that administrations will go after their enemies. We’ve had a problem with that in our country before and that’s why we’ve had reforms. Right now this shows me, the whole Trump investigation shows me we need more reforms. It’s about trying to control the government. Government, they say power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. We need to limit the power of the government to spy on Americans. I think the president may do some of this so I’m working with him on ideas, if they want to look at foreign intelligence, if they want to look at an American, they have to go to a public court, the district court here in New York, in public, and say we have probable cause we want to investigate an American. Otherwise, it shouldn’t happen. They abused the FISA system, which is supposed to be about going after foreign spies, to go after an American campaign. This is a terrible abuse of power and I want to be part of making sure it never happens to anybody again.