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Ken Cuccinelli to assist Rand Paul in NSA lawsuit

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Beltway Confidential,Opinion,Ken Cuccinelli,Rand Paul,NSA,Ashe Schow,Edward Snowden

This item was first published at 10:05 a.m. Monday.

Former Virginia gubernatorial candidate and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli will join Sen. Rand Paul as a legal adviser to the Kentucky senator's class-action lawsuit against the National Security Agency.

Cuccinelli, who left office Saturday, will be the lead lawyer in Paul's lawsuit against the data-collection programs revealed by Edward Snowden. The former attorney general asked supporters on Facebook to join him and Paul “in asserting our right to privacy” and stopping the overreach of government into innocent Americans' private lives.

Paul first announced his lawsuit on Jan. 3 to Fox News' Eric Bolling. He also briefly spoke of Cuccinelli's involvement at that time.

“He has constitutional expertise,” Paul said. “And we're hoping that with his help we can get a hearing in court and ultimately get this class action lawsuit -- I think the first of its kind on a constitutional question -- taken all the way to the Supreme Court.”

Paul has always been a fan of Cuccinelli, and even wrote of the former gubernatorial candidate in his book The Last Line of Defense, saying Cuccinelli was “a true and consistent champion of liberty.”

This is not Cuccinelli's first discussion of action against the NSA. In June, while running for governor, Cuccinelli said he has spoken with other attorneys general about handling “federal overreaching,” including the tapping of government employee's phones -- if those phones had plans with Verizon.

“Keep in mind they've gotten warrants to gather data from people they know are no threat at all, I don't know how you can say the Commonwealth of Virginia's own state government could be a threat, and this is unprecendented as far as I know,” Cuccinelli said at the time.

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