We are now back to the arsonist blaming the firefighter for arson, again.
This time Marco Rubio’s backers have really stepped in it with Iowa voters by running an ad insinuating that Cruz is responsible for Paris-style terror attacks because he voted to reform the NSA bulk data collection. The Cruz campaign probably couldn’t pay Team Rubio enough money to continue running those ads because Iowa voters hate the mass surveillance state.
Sean Noble, a Rubio backer, is running $200,000 worth of ads in Iowa through his 501(c)4 group assailing Cruz as weak on national security because he championed the Freedom Act. This is a line of attack recently lodged by Rubio himself and dutifully picked up in the beltway “conservative” media over the past week. What is so pathetic about this attack is that voters oppose the NSA bulk data collection and this bill was sponsored by Sen. Mike Lee to strike a balance between preserving the vital tools needed to track terrorists and ensuring that the NSA doesn’t cast a wide net around all Americans.
Not only was this bill supported by Sen. Lee, it garnered the support of Sens. Cory Gardner (R-CO) and Steve Daines (R-Mt), two supporters of Rubio. A number of House members supporting Rubio for president voted for the Freedom Act as well. All but 47 Republicans voted for the bill, and a good number of the no votes felt the Freedom Act didn’t go far enough in curtailing the NSA.
In fact, Mr. Noble worked for Sen. Jeff Flake who also voted for the Freedom Act. I guess his boss and all of Rubio’s backers are also weak on national security.
The reality is that no surveillance state is robust enough to compensate for the security risks incurred from the massive immigration, particularly from stateless Middle East refugees, Rubio planned to bring in under the Gang of 8 bill. This line of attack from Rubio really speaks to the dyslexic national security priorities he shares with Sens. McCain and Graham. They believe we should get involved in every Islamic civil war in the Middle East and supported the arming of Al Qaeda in Libya, and now in Syria. Then they support open borders and the importation of Islamic refugees from the civil wars in which they involved us. Finally, they want a mass surveillance state to attempt to cure the problems they caused.
How about not supporting Islamist rebels and the Arab Spring that gave rise to ISIS in the first place? How about supporting Cruz’s immigration plan that speaks to the direct threat of importing Islamists to our own shores? How about supporting Cruz’s bill to strip citizenship from those who are actually caught fighting for ISIS.
Team Rubio seems to have its constitutional arguments and national security/immigration policies flipped on its head. Their arguments might have gained some resonance against a Ron Paul-style challenger, but against Cruz that dog won’t hunt.
Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.