This article has been updated since its original publication
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) has relaxed his possible opposition to President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, announcing he will vote for Kavanaugh’s confirmation should the time come.
Concerned that Kavanaugh had been produced by the D.C. establishment, Rand Paul expressed to feeling “worried” about the Bush appointee’s nomination. Rand particularly objected to Kavanaugh’s stance on the Fourth Amendment’s ban on “unreasonable” searches and seizures by the government. The noted libertarian has been an outspoken critic of the NSA surveillance programs as well as the so-called deep-state’s treatment of President Trump.
In 2015, Kavanaugh wrote a concurring opinion to a District of Columbia Court of Appeals ruling affirming the constitutionality of the NSA’s warrantless phone records collection program.
Despite Paul’s misgivings, he now claims to have been convinced of Kavanaugh’s SCOTUS pedigree after meeting with the nominee for over an hour last week. In a statement released on Monday, the Kentucky senator expressed hope that Kavanaugh “will be more open to a Fourth Amendment that protects digital records and property.”
“Of course, my vote is not a single-issue vote, and much of my reading and conversation has been in trying to figure out exactly how good Judge Kavanaugh will be on other issues before the Court,” Paul said. “My conversation with Judge Kavanaugh reinforces my belief that he will evaluate cases before the Supreme Court from a textual and originalist point of view.”
He added, “I believe he will carefully adhere to the Constitution and will take his job to protect individual liberty seriously.”
Upon his confirmation, Kavanaugh himself expressed how he adheres to a judicial philosophy that interprets the constitution “as it is written.” He also expressed admiration for the late Justice Antonin Scalia, an originalist whose tenure on the Supreme Court set the gold standard for conservative jurisprudence.
The pro-life community has largely endorsed Kavanaugh’s confirmation as well, assured that he will protect religious liberties and roll back the infamous Roe v. Wade.
UPDATE: After the publishing of this article, the communications director for Rand Paul reached out to DW in order to clarify that the senator never expressed opposition to Kavanaugh or campaigned against him, alleging our use of the word “flipped” was inaccurate. Their full statement provided:
“The headline reads ‘Rand Paul Flips, Now Publicly Supports Brett Kavanaugh.’ You also write that he ‘began campaigning against the Bush appointee’s nomination…'”
“It is untrue to say he has flipped, as Sen. Paul has never outright said he opposed Kavanaugh. He has raised concerns publicly, but that is not opposition.”
“Furthermore, it is inaccurate to say that he campaigned against him. Again, he raised his specific concerns publicly but has always maintained keeping an open mind – his July 9 tweet on this reflects that position.”
Rand Paul tweeted on July 9: “I look forward to the upcoming hearings, reviewing the record, and meeting personally with Judge Kavanaugh, with an open mind.”