• With: Newt Gingrich

    This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," March 6, 2013. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

    GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: This is a "FOX News Alert," and more than 10 hours and counting, Senator Rand Paul launching an old-fashioned filibuster on the Senate floor! And at this hour, well, he is still going! Right now, Senator John Barrasso is giving him a little bit of a break, but Senator Paul trying to delay the confirmation of CIA director nominee John Brennan, Senator Paul using the filibuster to protest President Obama's authority to kill Americans with drones.

    Senators from both parties, though, have been helping the senator out, his filibuster shaping up to be one of the longest in U.S. history. Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich joins us. Nice to see you, sir.

    NEWT GINGRICH, FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE/FORMER HOUSE SPEAKER: Good to be with you.

    VAN SUSTEREN: Your thoughts watching the filibuster? It's been a while since we've seen this.

    GINGRICH: I'm proud of Rand Paul. I'm proud of him for standing up for the rights of the Americans and the Constitution. I'm proud of him for pushing the Senate and actually having a genuine filibuster, which is the right of a senator. And I'm proud of him for getting all of us, as you are tonight, to pay some attention.

    This is a serious question. We've evolved into a world where the president of the United States basically signs off on killing people on a remarkable frequency, and the question is whether or not that could, A, ever be applied domestically, and B, whether it could be applied to Americans unless they're active enemy combatants.

    And I think it's worthy of a law that prohibits that kind of decision. We don't want to give anybody power to kill an American citizen without due process of law.

    VAN SUSTEREN: Are you surprised how few senators have sort of rallied up to help him out a little bit? We've seen Senator Marco Rubio, Senator Mike Lee, Senator Barrasso, Senator Ron Wyden, a Democrat, helping. But that's -- this is a body of 100 senators!

    GINGRICH: Well, I think more will come in because I think courage ultimately attracts others. And I think Rand Paul is showing a level of courage that is historic and that will be remembered for a long time. I mean, if you're a civil libertarian liberal or if you're a constitutionalist conservative, both wings have to be proud of Rand Paul standing up for the constitutional rights of Americans.

    VAN SUSTEREN: Well, who -- who likes these drones, giving the president power without any sort of a check, without any sort of an authority? And there's some question -- we'll discuss it later -- of, you know -- it says if there's some -- if -- he talks about imminence, and imminence being defined very broadly, I might add.

    GINGRICH: No, the imminent tool is nonsense. I mean, if you read carefully what the White House spokesman and others have said, there are no practical rules here except the president or his designee -- because, remember, presidents don't normally sit there and go, Oh, yes, let me spend the next three hours studying this. They delegate it to somebody who walks in and says, Let's kill this guy.

    And I think most of the killings have been legitimate. But I think as a long-term pattern, it's amazingly dangerous. And there ought to be a set of procedures -- I think, Senator Feinstein, for example, a Democrat, has been exactly right to demand information for the Intelligence Committee...

    VAN SUSTEREN: She's not -- but she's not helping out! And I mean...

    GINGRICH: Well...

    VAN SUSTEREN: You know, there are a lot of people -- there are a lot of senators who are not -- are we to assume the senators who aren't there helping Senator Rand Paul to be -- to be in support of the drone program or the...

    (CROSSTALK)

    GINGRICH: No. No, I think that a lot of senators are watching tonight in amazement. I don't remember -- you may know, I don't remember the last time there was a genuine filibuster. This is a very healthy thing to see a U.S. senator...

    VAN SUSTEREN: Well, where are the rest of them, then?

    GINGRICH: Huh?

    VAN SUSTEREN: Where are the -- are we to assume the ones who aren't there think this is a great program, this drone program...

    GINGRICH: Look...

    VAN SUSTEREN: ... and giving sort of...

    GINGRICH: No...

    VAN SUSTEREN: ... unfettered authority?

    GINGRICH: Not necessarily. I think you have a lot of folks who -- this is just not their style. They're -- they're not comfortable...

    VAN SUSTEREN: What, they just let it go?

    GINGRICH: No, they're just not comfortable with this level of...

    VAN SUSTEREN: What, standing up for issues?

    GINGRICH: I don't want to go quite that far, but...

    (CROSSTALK)

    VAN SUSTEREN: Come on!

    GINGRICH: I was, once upon a time, one of the most aggressive floor debaters in the U.S. House.

    VAN SUSTEREN: No! You've got to be kidding!

    GINGRICH: There were at least 400 members of the House who thought I was crazy because they just couldn't imagine doing that. But I believe what Rand Paul is doing is both historic in procedure for the Senate and historic in raising a constitutional issue with the country, and I commend him for this level of leadership. And as you yourself said, he's beginning to gradually attract a bipartisan group.

    VAN SUSTEREN: If he sits down, I understand, it's over. I mean, he can't even sit and rest.

    GINGRICH: Well, no...

    VAN SUSTEREN: The minute he sits down...

    GINGRICH: He can only sit if somebody else -- if he yields time to -- that's why Senator Barrasso came in to help him. Sometimes, you have to take a bathroom break or something...