Paul says president making a "mess" by going around Congress on big issues

08/12/2014 05:27 PM

Kentucky U.S. Senator Rand Paul is not completely against targeted airstrikes in Iraq ordered by President Barack Obama, but he strongly disagrees with the approach the president is taking with action in the region among other things.

As tensions continue to rise in Iraq and the United States begins to get involved, the president has ordered targeted airstrikes in the region, as well as the dropping of supplies for Iraqis fighting militant forces.

In a speech at the Greater Louisville Inc. luncheon in Louisville Tuesday, Senator Paul said he is not opposed to the airstrikes but said the president can not continue to take action on issues like Iraq without speaking to Congress.

“I think we should steadfastly say we are not sending ground troops back into Iraq,” Paul said. “I am not saying we can’t help. There are people trapped on mountains, we can airlift them food, I am not even saying we couldn’t use our airforce like the president is doing. But it is wrong of him to have done it without asking the permission of the American people.”

After a new prime minister was put in charge of Iraq, Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday morning the United States will consider more military, economic, and political help to the country once their government gets organized.

When speaking to reporters after the event, Paul told Pure Politics he is open to the idea of more aid to the country as long as the president discusses the options with the other branches of government.

“Constitutionally, he should come forward with a plan to Congress and we vote for it or against it,” Paul said. “I have an open mind as to exactly what we do.”

Another example Paul used to illustrate his point that the president is abusing his power was immigration reform. With an influx of Central American children crossing the southern borders of the United States, the president and Congress have been trying to find solutions.

But Paul said Tuesday the president is sending the wrong message to the rest of the world.

“He is going against what the law says,” Paul said. “The law says they can’t stay, he is saying the can stay. When you create your own law what happens is you create a mess because now everybody in central America thinks there is no law in America.”

Since Paul is considering a run for the White House himself in 2016, one attendee at the luncheon asked Paul if he thinks there would ever be a time he would use executive orders if he should be elected to the office.

In response, Paul said that the only time he would use an executive order would be to overturn a previous executive order that he believed is holding the country back.

Another policy of the Obama administration that Paul does not agree with is the Affordable Care Act.

A large part of Paul’s remarks were spent talking about the problems in the health care system and how he believes the reforms have made things worse.

Paul said cost has always been a problem when it comes to health insurance, even for those who already had it. But Paul said now cost is even more of an issue.

“The 15 percent who didn’t have insurance were obviously worried about the access problem,” Paul said as he explained that some of those uninsured were making between $50,000 to $75,000 a year but were not buying insurance because it was too expensive. “So what did we do? I think we screwed it up for the 85 percent that did have insurance.”

About Pure Politics

Pure Politics airs Monday through Friday at 7 p.m. ET and again at 11:30 p.m. ET in all of cn|2's Kentucky markets. The program features political analysis and news, as well as interviews with officials, candidates, policy makers and political observers.


Subscribe to email updates.

Subscribe and get the latest political intelligence delivered to your inbox.