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Randstand: Republican Presidential Candidate Leads Bipartisan Opposition to Patriot Act

Some 2016 rivals say he's jeopardizing national security.
Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) greets guests gathered for the Republican Party of Iowa's Lincoln Dinner at the Iowa Events Center on May 16, 2015 in Des Moines, Iowa.

Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) greets guests gathered for the Republican Party of Iowa's Lincoln Dinner at the Iowa Events Center on May 16, 2015 in Des Moines, Iowa.

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

Over the course of two-and-a-half minutes in the wee hours of Saturday morning, Rand Paul set off a few parliamentary explosions in the Senate, likely detonated another trademark "money bomb" for his presidential campaign, and seized a leadership role in what seems likely to be a prolonged, bipartisan debate over the way the U.S. handles terrorist threats.

Hours after Paul used a range of parliamentary maneuvers to blocked the Senate from extending the Patriot Act, the contentious anti-terror law that expires June 1, and forced his Kentucky colleague, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, to call senators back for a rare Sunday session on May 31, some of his colleagues suggested his motives were purely self-serving.