The chasm between Chris Christie and Rand Paul over the topic of foreign policy, dovetailed with personal liberty, just got a whole lot wider. In a recent TV interview, Christie said that due to Paul’s fervent work in preventing renewal of the PATRIOT Act, the Senator from Kentucky should be held responsible if a terrorist attack occurs on American soil.
Report from Politico:
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Monday expanded on his attack of Rand Paul for his efforts to force the expiration of the PATRIOT Act, saying that the Kentucky senator, not the directors of the FBI or CIA, should answer to Congress in the event of another terrorist attack.
In an interview with MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Christie said that most voters have expressed grave concern with the threat posed by the Islamic State.
“And that’s why what Rand Paul has done to make this country weaker and more vulnerable is a terrible thing, and for him to raise money off of it is disgraceful. It’s disgraceful,” Christie said, touting his experience as the only candidate to use the PATRIOT Act as New Jersey’s top prosecutor.
“We’re going to look back on this, and he should be in front of hearings in front of Congress if there’s another attack,” the governor said at the end of the interview. “Not the director of the FBI or the CIA.”
The rhetoric may sound good to hawkish Republicans weary of Rand Paul’s libertarian-laced foreign policy views. However, Christie is failing to note the attacks which already took place including the Boston Marathon bombing, the attack at Ft. Hood, and a handful of others. Granted, these are smaller-scale attacks, but still fit the definition of terrorism and they all happened while the PATRIOT Act was in full swing.
This will be a hot point of contention in the first debate if Christie makes it onto the primetime stage. Other Republicans, such as Lindsey Graham, are taking the same line of attack against Paul.