Count House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, California Republican, among Sen. Rand Paul’s fans.
Mr. Paul’s 13-hour filibuster on Thursday raised the tea party senator’s national profile — and drew sharp jabs the next day from fellow Sens. Lindsey Graham and John McCain — but Mr. McCarthy, the House’s third-ranked Republican, says Mr. Paul’s critics are just wrong.
“What Rand Paul did on the floor this week was fantastic,” Mr. McCarthy, of California, said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
“I think those Republican who criticized him were wrong. And this is a place that I think the Democrats were wrong that a lot of them didn’t join with him. This was an American issue … and an idea of civil liberties. I think that’s a core belief of Republicans, and if we embrace a little more of our libertarian views, we’ll go further.”
Mr. Paul, a longtime critic of the Obama administration’s policies related to the use of drones in targeted killings, held up for a day the confirmation of John O. Brennan as CIA director.