Obama Terrorism Speech: How 4 Leading Republicans Reacted


Prominent Republicans took to the Sunday talk shows this week to voice their criticisms of President Obama's national security speech last Thursday. The president's address, the first major foreign policy speech of his second term, outlined plans to curtail executive power, beginning with a reexamination of the Authorization to Use Military Force (AUMF), to narrow the scope of the drone program and transfer in entirely to the Pentagon, to close the Guantanamo Bay Detention Facility, and to begin a transition away from the post-9/11 battle against terrorists.

1. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) on Fox News Sunday:

"We show this lack of resolve, talking about the war being over… What do you think the Iranians are thinking? At the end of the day, this is the most tone-deaf president I ever could imagine, making such a speech at a time when our homeland is trying to be attacked literally every day."

2. Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) on CNN's State of the Union:  

"Name me one American city that would like to host these guys [GITMO prisoners]." 

"The rhetoric sort of defies the reality on the threat level we've been briefed on."

3. Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) on ABC's This Week:

"I'm offended by the moralizing …The fact is, whether you agree or disagree with Guantanamo, many experts believe that it did work. It was something that had to be done at the time. The president had five years to end this if he really wanted to. He could've moved most of those prisoners out of the country."

4. Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on ABC's This Week:

"I was pleased with his words, and I was pleased that he did respond to this [legality of the drone program]. However, there's still a question in my mind of what he thinks due process is. Due process, to most of us, is a court of law. It is a trial by jury, and, right now, their process is him looking at some flash cards and a PowerPoint presentation on 'Terror Tuesdays' in the White House. For a lot of us, that's not really due process."