Discuss as:

Rand Paul heads home after 13-hour filibuster

Charles Dharapak / AP

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., walks to a waiting vehicle as he leaves the Capitol after his filibuster of the nomination of John Brennan to be CIA director on Capitol Hill in Washington, early Thursday, March 7, 2013.

Charles Dharapak / AP

Rand Paul speaks to reporters after leaving the floor of the Senate.

It started as a one-senator crusade shortly before lunch on Wednesday, but as the day went on, more senators joined Rand Paul of Kentucky to take a stand against drones being used to target Americans on U.S. soil. NBC's Chuck Todd reports.

By Carrie Dann and Kasie Hunt, NBC News

After holding forth on the Senate floor for almost 13 hours, Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul has ended a lengthy filibuster of the president's nominee to lead the CIA. 

Paul, who cited objections over the administration's policy regarding potential drone attacks on U.S. citizens, relinquished the Senate floor at nearly 1 a.m. ET early Thursday morning. 

In the end, it was nature that called. 

"I've discovered that there are some limits to filibustering, and I am going to have to take care of one of those in a few minutes here," he said to laughter after thanking his supporters and staff. Read the full story.