In a Snapchat interview Wednesday, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky) told CNN that any drone flying over his house, “better beware”, because he has a shotgun. The comment was in response to a question posed by CNN’s Ashley Codianni in reference to a drone that landed on the White House lawn on Monday.
Codianni also asked if drones, which are increasingly popular toys and tools used by both civilians and military, should be banned completely. Paul maintained his stance that, “Drones should only be used according to the Constitution.” Paul also hinted that he “maybe” interested in occupying the White House after 2016, but, “They may have to make the fence and guard the fence a little bit better than they have been doing lately.”
The interview was conducted via Snapchat’s news tool, Discover, which allows news outlets to post brief content pieces on the popular messaging app. As Wired has reported, Snapchat is working with ten media partners, including CNN, ESPN, and National Geographic. These companies will release a new edition of Discover content every 24 hours, featuring both videos and articles hand-picked by their staffers. The goal for these media companies, of course, is to hook a new, younger audience that doesn’t often connect with traditional media.
Sen. Paul is the first elected official to participate in this savvy new interview style aimed at capturing the millennial audience. With 200M registered users, Snapshot is a popular image and video-sharing service with the majority of users in the potential voter ranges of ages 18-30. Appealing to younger voters has proven to be a requirement for any serious presidential contender. A massive poll by Harvard’s Institute of Politics demonstrated that 51% of 18 to 29-year olds that will “definitely be voting” wanted the GOP “in control”.
Paul has been a champion of responsible drone policy since his popular 13-hour filibuster over the Obama administration’s insinuation that it could use lethal force via drones against non-combative Americans on U.S. soil.
“The fact that the Obama Administration has told a U.S. Senator that there is a circumstance where the government could target and kill an American citizen on American soil without charge or without trial is a stark example of an imperial presidency. This is what our founding fathers tried to protect us from,” Paul said.
Senator Paul succeeded in igniting a firestorm of transpartisan support with his filibuster, starting a debate in Washington while rallying the anti-war left, GOP moderates and the libertarian wing. His stance and the resultant debate captured worldwide social media attention as well, an increasingly necessary tactic for capturing young voters and remaining relevant. #StandWithRand trended on Twitter for over one week. The move grabbed the attention of many young voters that use the popular social outlets for news and communication more than any other platform.
Paul was also asked for his thoughts on Hillary Clinton’s $200,000 speaking fees. He called the price “obscene” and said “I guess she can pay her chauffeur well now.”