Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) said “neocons” are “actually much closer to President Obama than I am” on Wednesday’s “Kelly File” on the Fox News Channel.
“I like Charles…but you know what, sometimes he’s just wrong. And what I would say the reason he’s wrong is that if you look at who’s closest to President Obama on foreign policy it would be the people who have supported his policies, like the war in Libya. I think the neocons, both in our party, have been very close to President Obama on all of these issues. The only place that they have differed is in degrees. I’ve been the one who opposed the war in Libya, I was the one opposed to Obama bombing Assad — [in] the beginning of the Syrian conflict began. I was the one opposed to Obama’s arming of the Syrian rebels, of the Islamic rebels. See, the neocons have been in favor of all of these things, and they’re actually much closer to President Obama than I am” he stated, although he declined to name the specific neocons.
He continued “it’s not my choice to start out by having a war with Republicans. but I will tell you, for example in polling in Iowa about two months ago they asked the question, ‘are you — do you favor Rand Paul’s foreign policy of being less involved, or do you favor John McCain’s policy of being more involved and intervening more in war around the world,’ and it’s actually pretty evenly split. About half of Republicans think, ‘yep, John McCain’s always right and we should have troops in 15 countries and be at war continuously,’ but about half the party says, ‘you know what, Rand Paul has a point. sometimes we get involved and it actually backfires on us.’ I think Libya’s an example of that, and I think had we toppled Assad, ISIS would have been stronger, and I think our arming of the Islamic rebels in that civil war has allowed ISIS to get stronger.”
Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett