WASHINGTON (AP) -- A Republican critic of the Obama administration's drone policy mounted a self-described filibuster Wednesday to block Senate confirmation of John Brennan to take over as director of the CIA.
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., took the floor shortly before noon. With intermittent support from other conservatives holding similar views, plus Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon, Paul spoke almost continuously for five hours before Majority Leader Harry Reid tried but failed to move to a vote on Brennan.
Paul resumed his oration, snacking on some candy at the dinner hour while continuing to speak. At one point, Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill, who walks haltingly with a cane because of a stroke, delivered a canister of hot tea and an apple to Paul's desk, but a doorkeeper removed them.
The Kentucky senator, who is the son of former Texas Rep. and libertarian leader Ron Paul, offered to cease if President Barack Obama or Attorney General Eric Holder issued a statement assuring that drones would not be used in the United States to kill terrorism suspects who are U.S. citizens.
Later in the evening Paul offered to allow a vote on Brennan if the Senate would vote on his resolution stating that the use of the unmanned, armed aircraft on U.S. soil against American citizens violates the Constitution. Democrats rejected the offer.