President Barack Obama has the legal authority to unleash deadly force—such as drone strikes—against Americans on U.S. soil without first putting them on trial, Attorney General Eric Holder wrote in a letter released Tuesday.But Holder, writing to Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, underlined that Obama “has no intention” of targeting his fellow citizens with unmanned aerial vehicles and would do so only if facing “an extraordinary circumstance.”
Paul had asked the Obama administration on Feb. 20 whether the president "has the power to authorize lethal force, such as a drone strike, against a U.S. citizen on U.S. soil and without trial." On Tuesday, he denounced Holder's response as “frightening” and “an affront to the Constitutional due process rights of all Americans.”
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But he won't use this power...