Nov. 7 (UPI) — Sen. Rand Paul blocked a resolution by Senate Democrats to recognize the role of Congress and the executive branch to protect whistle-blowers on Wednesday.
Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, called for unanimous consent on the resolution seeking to acknowledge “the contributions of whistle-blowers” and placing the chamber’s support behind protecting whistle-blowers from retaliation.
“The threats we have seen over the last few days are so egregious they demand bipartisan outrage from one end of this chamber to the other, whether you’re a Democrat, Republican, independent, liberal, moderate or conservative,” Schumer, D-N.Y., said. “What’s happening here is another erosion of the values of this republic for political expediency.
Paul, R-Ky., blocked the resolution under Senate rules, saying he would like the Senate to pass his own resolution.
The bill Paul proposed would allow President Donald Trump to face the whistle-blower who presented the complaint at the center of the House’s impeachment inquiry, expand current whistle-blower protections for contractors and be applied retroactively.
“The bill I will introduce today will expand the whistleblower act and would be made retroactive so Edward Snowden can come home to live in his own country. All he did was expose that his government was not obeying the Constitution,” Paul said.
Paul proposed the bill a day after calling for the media to print the identity of the whistle-blower at the center of the impeachment inquiry during a Trump rally in support of Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin.
Hirono objected to dropping the Democratic resolution and passing Paul’s bill which she said she’d not had the chance to read through, adding she was “flabbergasted” by a provision that would apply the Sixth Amendment to impeachment proceedings.
“Come forward, but we’re going to out you, subject you to threats, intimidation, retaliation,” Hirono said of the provision.