(CNN) – Sen. Rand Paul attempted to rebut recent criticism of his stance on national security issues on Sunday, telling attendees of a Republican fundraiser in Tennessee that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and GOP Rep. Peter King of New York were depleting the government's coffers by asking for federal disaster relief.
"The people who want to criticize me and call me names, they are precisely the same people who are unwilling to cut the spending," Paul said at a "Boots and Jeans, BBQ and Beans" event in Franklin, according to CNN affiliate WKRN-TV.
"They are 'Gimme, gimme, gimme all my Sandy money now.' Those are the people who are bankrupting the government and not allowing enough money be left over for national defense," Paul continued.
Paul, a Kentucky Republican, was speaking the same day King told CNN chief political correspondent Candy Crowley that a recent libertarian streak in the GOP threatened to weaken what he said was the party's traditional strength.
King – who, along with Christie, represents an area devastated by last year's Superstorm Sandy - sharply chastised Paul for suggesting admitted NSA leaker Edward Snowden was performing an act of civil disobedience when he revealed the massive snooping programs.
"This is the anti-war, left-wing Democrats of the 1960s that nominated George McGovern and destroyed their party for almost 20 years. I don't want that happening to our party," King said on CNN's "State of the Union."
King argued that while a debate over the NSA programs could be useful, attempts to defund them were dangerous. The House of Representatives narrowly rejected a measure last week that would have stripped funding from a phone monitoring program.
"I thought it was absolutely disgraceful that so many Republicans voted to defund the NSA program, which has done so much to protect our country," King said. "This is an isolationist streak that's in our party. It goes totally against the party of Eisenhower, and Reagan, Bush. I mean, we are a party of national defense. We're a party who did so much to protect the country over the last 12 years."
Last week, Christie slammed libertarian-minded Republicans who have questioned the NSA spying programs, including Paul. Speaking on a panel for Republican governors, Christie urged caution when discussing ways to revamp U.S. security.
And he argued that those opposed to the government spying programs should talk first to families of loved ones who died in the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
"These esoteric, intellectual debates - I want them to come to New Jersey and sit across from the widows and orphans and have that conversation," Christie said. "And they won't. That's a lot tougher conversation to have."
Paul, Christie and King have all suggested they're considering runs for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination.
Next time KY has a national disaster, it IS KY after all its already a disaster, lets make sure lite paul pays for it all himself.
He sounds like toothman from VA so that tells all there is to know about this civil rights I don't want to serve everyone unless they are white at my establishment.
The more he talks the more we learn what kind of politician and person he is. A loser who is trying to make a name for himself after riding in on his daddy's coattails. 2016? Turkey!
You hear that Kentucky? America? Rand Paul says that if you get hit by mother nature you are on your own. Rebuild your own roads, bridges and municipal buildings like courthouses and water treatment plants.
The Sandy aid was ok..........but the pork in that bill, exceeded the aid.........and that was unacceptable.
"They are 'Gimme, gimme, gimme all my Sandy money now.' Those are the people who are bankrupting the government and not allowing enough money be left over for national defense,"
So Rand, what do you say to your republican colleagues in Tornado Alley who need disaster relief over and over and over? Tell them to get off the government tit!
This guy lacks brain....
Boots and Jeans? I didn't realize Tennessee was a wannabe Texas. WOW
King: "We're a party who did so much to protect the country over the last 12 years" - Um, genius, Obama has been president for 4 1/2 years and Democrats controlled 1 or both houses of Congress. Look at a calendar.
Christie: "I want them to come to New Jersey and sit across from the widows and orphans and have that conversation" - Fine, Chris. I myself would be delighted to tell anyone, "widows", "orphans", or Oliver Twist, that the NSA spying on our citizens without a warrant is unConstitutional. Hardly an "esoteric" debate. It's a fact.
Paul: ... oh why bother; can't argue with crazy.
King,we're a party that's for national defense..Yah look who King mentioned all warmongering idiots in Reagan ,Eisenhower and Bush what a freakin trio if I've ever seen em,only the best at starting wars,devastating the economy at the same time I say...Give the WH to another idiot republican and I'll predict within his term we'll be on someone else's foriegn soil fightin for God knows what because as usual they won't let Americans know for sure what we're there for like in Vietnam,Iraq or Afghanistan,all republican created ,all for no reason but to keep their masters the MIC happy and their corrupt pockets full!!
Love it when the GOP eat their own. 3 years away from election and they are fighting, get your popcorn ready its gonna get good.
A national disaster needs to hit Paul state and see what Paul's response would be then!! I am pretty sure Christie was thinking the same thing Paul was before Sandy hit his state.
Bland Paul has 0 chance of ever being president of the USA ,we don't elect idiots to be president!!!!
Rant Paul is nutjob, and bigot rep King is also a nut job, and terrorist sympathiser so who cares what these two have to say.
Bland Paul is a waste of good ink!!!!
The beginning of the end? Don't particularly care for Christie,much less for King! The bottom of the barrel however belongs to Rand Paul. Clueless with a huge ego. Not good!!! Christie at least can govern. Paul wants no part of doing anything close to governing! He just loves the attention....and the power. This is his chance to escape the shadow of his daddy! Had one of those in office already!!! Don't need to do that again.
Losers like bland Paul are the first ones to put their hand out for help when disaster hits their hick state while criticizing others that need it, they should be put on part time pay for their part time work with no healthcare, then the GOP bafoons would be. First in line to sign up for obamacare while pushing your edelweiss mother out of the way!!!!
This is further proof that the Republican party will destroy itself from within: war on women, war on voter rights, war on health care, war on government, and now a war on itself.
Sen Rand Paul is a hypocrite. If disaster hit his state, he would be first in line with hands open begging for federal aid.
Christie is toast if the GOP will wake up to him.