The dust-up between New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul over presidential fidelity to the Constitution — particularly the Fourth Amendment — was the most illuminating two minutes of the Republican debate last week.
It is a well-regarded historical truism that the Fourth Amendment was written by victims of government snooping, the 1770s version. The Framers wrote it to assure that the new federal government could never do to Americans what the king had done to the colonists.
What did the king do? He dispatched British agents and soldiers into the colonists’ homes and businesses ostensibly looking for proof of payment of the king’s taxes and armed with general warrants issued by a secret court in London.