The junior senator from Kentucky, whose filibuster rallied opposition to domestic drone use, April 23 clarified his position after reports that he had flipped.
"My comments last night left the mistaken impression that my position on drones had changed," said Sen. Randall H. Paul (R.-Ky.) about his April 22 interview with Neil Cavuto on the Fox Business channel.
Sen. Randall H. Paul (R.-Ky.)
"Let me be clear: it has not. Armed drones should not be used in normal crime situations," he said.
"They only may only be considered in extraordinary, lethal situations where there is an ongoing, imminent threat. I described that scenario previously during my Senate filibuster."
"Fighting terrorism and capturing terrorists must be done while preserving our constitutional protections," he said.
"This was demonstrated last week in Boston. As we all seek to prevent future tragedies, we must continue to bear this in mind," he said.
Paul controlled the Senate for for more than 13 hours during his March 6 filibuster, which scuttled Democratic plans to proceed to vote on the confirmation of John Brennan as the new CIA director. The senator said then that he was using the parliamentary device to coerce President Barack Obama to state definitively if he would use armed drones against American citizens.
The controversy about his Fox Business comments revolve around his assertion that he always supported the use of drones within the traditional law enforcement context.
"If someone comes out of a liquor store with a weapon and fifty dollars in cash. I don't care if a drone kills him or a policeman kills him," he said to Fox Business.
"Additionally, surveillance drones should only be used with warrants and specific targets.
A staffer very close to the senator said the statement was a response to "erroneous reports of a change in his position on the use of domestic drones."
Watch the Fox Busines interview here: