Rand Paul’s Filibuster by the Numbers

By
Rand Paul filibuster word cloud.

Rand Paul's twelve-hour-and-52-minute filibuster was a throwback to epic Senate speeches of years past. According to Mary Baumann of the Senate Historian's Office, Paul's filibuster — though far shorter than Strom Thurmond's infamous 24-hour-and-fourteen-minute filibuster of the 1957 Civil Rights Act — was the longest since 1992 and the ninth-longest since 1900. (Records were not kept accurately before then.)

What we're saying is that Paul said a lot of words yesterday. And thanks to a complete transcript from the Library of Congress and whichever heroic transcribers worked their asses off for thirteen hours, we've broken down his words (and only his words — not the words of any of the senators who chimed in during the filibuster) by the numbers.

76,470: total words

1,396: I

757: you

522: think

395: people

455: president, presidential

385: kill

350: drone

306: question

216: government

184: power

136: amendment

78: citizen

75: Constitution

63: Obama

61: Brennan

59: CIA

46: imagine

42: yield

41: Awlaki

40: Holder

37: free, freedom

31: 9/11 or September 11

29: Bush

29: freedom

34: Bill of Rights

27: café

24: rule of law

23: Yemen

21: liberty

18: restaurant

12: filibuster

11: Posse Comitatis

10: grenade launcher

7: absurd

6: Bowling Green

5: Hitler

5: Jane Fonda

2: Lewis Carroll

2: tired