Sen. Rand Paul: Supreme Court needs to re-examine Fourth Amendment

Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky Republican, said Sunday that in light of recent revelations about data mining by the National Security Agency, the country needs a serious examination of privacy and the Fourth Amendment — and he pledged to take the fight to the country’s highest court if necessary.

“I would like to apply the Fourth Amendment to third-party records,” he said on “Fox News Sunday.” “I don’t think you give up your privacy when someone holds your records, so when I have a contract with a phone company, I think those are still my records, and you can look at them if you’re from the government if you ask a judge.”

The Washington Post reported this past week that the NSA is collecting nearly 5 billion cellphone records a day under a sophisticated program that tracks the whereabouts of individuals.

“But the most important thing is a warrant applies to one person — a warrant doesn’t apply to everyone in America,” Mr. Paul said. “So it’s absolutely against the spirit and the letter of the Fourth Amendment to say that a judge can write one warrant and you can get every phone call in America, and that’s what’s happening. I think it’s wrong. It goes against everything America stands for, and I will help fight that all the way to the Supreme Court, and we need to get the Supreme Court to re-examine privacy, the Fourth Amendment and our records.”

Mr. Paul said that he’s in favor of going after terrorists with every possible tool and that he’s not opposed to the NSA or spying, but that he is in favor of the Fourth Amendment.

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