Some will now warn that it was a one-time event, that the novelty has already worn off and it cannot be repeated. That warning will come from the White House's palace guard -- think Politico and Buzzfeed -- members of which in effect put up at a Bat Signal last night for lefty alums of Journ-o-list to rush online to disparage Paul when the Twitter tide rolled in behind the Kentucky senator just as it did to slice and dice Bob Woodward the week before.
But while such events cannot be a weekly thing, the use of the filibuster and the audience it brings if married to a real issue with real substance, and if done with the support of a handful of talented orators as Paul had around him last night, could become a powerful weapon in the messaging wars. Senators Cruz, Lee, and Rubio are the sort of skilled talkers that the other side does not have and which we should hope take full use of their floor privileges.
More opportunities will arise. Look down the road, for instance, to the nomination battle over Gina McCarthy to lead the EPA. The EPA has been in key respects a lawless agency for her entire tenure there. If her nomination survives committee hearings and then gets past cloture, the stage will be set for another "teach-in-by-filibuster." More such opportunities will arise, and the GOP ought not to be shy in using them.
Senator Paul changed quite a few things yesterday, all for the good.