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Rand Paul storms out of Homeland Security markup



Senator Rand Paul (R-KY), who is the ranking member on the Senate Homeland Security panel, stormed out of a committee markup after clashing with a Democrat colleague over amendments.  Paul took over the senior position following the retirement of Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) in November.

Paul expressed his frustration at Senator Gary Peters (D-MI) over his use of procedural tactics which Paul said would allow Democrats to avoid voting on GOP amendments to the Fire Grants and Safety Act.

Paul believed that the second-degree amendments Peters had proposed would water down their legislation.

Paul suggested that due to the lack of progress being made, all Republicans should depart the meeting.

“If this is the way you’re going to run the committee, I would suggest that Republicans leave. I don’t see why we should stick around if you’re going to make up the rules,” Paul said.


Independent Senator Krysten Sinema (AZ), formerly of The Democrat Party, asked for calm and said that if “we all take a couple minutes, lower the temperature, just figure out the procedure.”

“There’s no need for us to turn this committee hearing into a partisan, ugly place like we’ve seen in other committees,” she went on to say.

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) and Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) remained in the room following Paul’s departure.

Paul spoke out following the confrontation and said “this is the first time we’ve had a hearing since I’ve been here that I know of that we’ve gotten second-degree amendments on every one of our amendments.”

Lankford offered some support to Paul’s position.


“Typically in that committee, we just have votes,” he said. “When we can’t work it out behind the scenes, we have a vote and not replace someone’s vote.

“We got to actually take votes,” he said.

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