THE LATEST: Paul takes heat on Patriot Act, ISIS stances

AP News
Posted: May 31, 2015 3:41 PM
THE LATEST: Paul takes heat on Patriot Act, ISIS stances

3 p.m. (EDT)

Republican presidential hopeful George Pataki says GOP rival Rand Paul is putting the nation at risk for political purposes with his legislative tactics stalling the extension of the Patriot Act.

Pataki was New York governor in 2001 when the 9/11 terrorists struck. He says Paul's maneuvers in the Senate can only suspend parts of the anti-terrorism act for several days, not block them permanently, so letting those provisions expire has no value even for people who oppose them. He says Paul is "putting Americans at risk for a political reason."

The National Security Agency stands to lose legal authority to collect and search domestic phone records for connections to international terrorists unless senators find a way Sunday to avoid a lapse. Paul and other civil liberties advocates argue surveillance programs authorized by the NSA have not produced significant results in protecting Americans from terrorism.


11:15 a.m. (EDT)

Republican presidential candidate Sen. Rand Paul certainly raised hackles in his own party when he blamed the rise of the Islamic State group on Republican hawks, and perhaps none has taken more offense than Louisiana's governor, Bobby Jindal.

Jindal was asked Sunday on ABC's "This Week" whether he would support Paul if the Kentucky senator became the Republican nominee. The governor said he doubts it'll come to that, because Paul probably won't win. Jindal is expected to say in coming weeks whether he will join the nomination contest.

Paul said last week that Republican hawks supported the indiscriminate spread of arms in the region where ISIS operates and some of those weapons have fallen into the hands of extremists. That led Jindal to say Paul is unsuited to be president. The governor says ISIS exists purely because of radical Islam.


11 a.m. (EDT)

Carly Fiorina has spilled the beans.

She colors her hair, like Hillary Rodham Clinton does.

Fiorina is a former Hewlett-Packard CEO who's now a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, and she's emerged as a relentless critic of Clinton. Fiorina says she's just happy to have hair. She lost it for a while when she was battling breast cancer.

Clinton told an audience in South Carolina last week that while at age 67 she may not be the youngest candidate in the race, she did have one advantage: "I've been coloring my hair for years." She said most presidents go snow white in office.

Fiorina tells "Fox News Sunday" that Clinton "clearly" will be the Democratic nominee and Republicans "must take the fight to her."


10:30 a.m. (EDT)

Is some extraterrestrial force keeping Jeb Bush from announcing a presidential candidacy?

Pressed on CBS' "Face the Nation," he spoke as if the decision is not his own.

He says: "I hope I run." And, "I hope, I hope, I'm a candidate in the near future."

What might possibly persuade him not to run? Bush says, "Who knows?" He says he's "learned not to answer a lot of hypothetical questions."

The former Florida governor says he'll decide soon after his trip to Europe, which starts in a week.

Bush has been campaigning and fundraising for months in all but name, and the political world would be shocked if he did not enter the Republican nomination race.

There are various reasons politicians dance around the question of whether they're running before making a formal announcement. One big reason: Once they declare their candidacy, they can no longer work directly with super PACs that are raising money to help them.

Bush's super PAC, like those assisting his rivals, will be able to raise unlimited amounts of cash to support his efforts. But super PACs cannot coordinate activities with an official presidential campaign.

Bush says he's already checked with his family, and his wife and children are "totally all in."

That's if he runs. As he hopes.


9:20 a.m. (EDT)

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is itching to debate Hillary Rodham Clinton — and some Republicans, too.

The Democratic presidential contender is proposing that the 2016 primary debates begin as soon as July. And, in a twist, he'd like Republicans in the mix.

But that's not the plan. The Democratic Party says it will hold six presidential primary debates with its candidates, beginning in the fall. The first Republican debate will be in August.

Sanders says on NBC's "Meet the Press" that "we need a lot more debates in this campaign."

To be sure, Sunday's morning news shows were something of a cross-party debating society of their own. Nine declared or likely presidential candidates appeared on the network programs.


9 a.m. (EDT)

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush predicts the Supreme Court ultimately will rule that President Barack Obama's executive actions on immigration are unconstitutional.

Bush says he thinks Obama acted for "political purposes" and wanted to "create a wedge for Democrats to win elections."

For now, federal courts have held up Obama's plan to shield as many as 5 million immigrants in the U.S. from deportation.

Bush also tells CBS' "Face the Nation" that he favors gradually raising the retirement age for Social Security. He says "we need to look over the horizon" and mentions going from age 65 to 68 or 70. Bush says that would help sustain the retirement system for anybody' under 40.

Bush isn't yet in the 2016 Republican presidential race, but says he'll have to make up his mind after a coming trip to Europe.