Rep. Peter King is warning that the United States is in greater danger from terrorists than ever before.
The New York Republican, who is reportedly interested in a presidential bid, said during a fund-raising swing through New Hampshire that the biggest threat comes from off-shoots
of the terrorist organization al-Qaida, according to the Concord Patch.
King, a member of both House committees on Homeland Security and Intelligence, said al-Qaida has “morphed and metastasized and we have now have eight or nine different components around the world.”
He also fears “lone wolves” in the U.S. affiliated with international terrorist organizations.
The outspoken congressman, who revealed in July that he's seriously mulling over a run for the White House
, said that "in many ways" the threat is more grave than before September 11 crisis, and that 15 potential attacks on New York alone since that day have been stopped.
"I see the threats from the inside out and the outside in,” he said about his briefings on both committees. “And this is a constant level of danger we are at.
King was using his trip to New Hampshire, an early voting state, to announce the formation of a Political Action Committee called American Leadership Now, which will be aimed at supporting moderate Republicans like himself, as opposed to what he perceives as extreme conservatives who are hurting the party. He lumps tea party-affiliated Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul in that group.
"I want to create a presence for those like myself who feel Rand Paul and Ted Cruz are out of touch with the American people,” King told ABC News
. “This is highlighted by the government shutdown, which was one of the worst political disasters we’ve ever had.”
King, who calls Republicans like himself "blue collar conservatives," has previously voiced his concerns about the GOP becoming “too isolationist and extreme.”
His new PAC is being seen as another indication that he plans to run in 2016.
"I believe we need candidates who are not isolationists, who believe in a strong national defense, who don’t believe in shutting down the government,” King told ABC News.
King, making his fifth visit to New Hampshire this year, was headlining a fundraising event in Concord to help the GOP raise money to take back the Senate next year.
He blasted President Barack Obama for "constantly apologizing for American power” and declared that he “wasn’t telling the truth” on the troubled Affordable Care Act, Obama's signature healthcare reform law, according to the Patch.
"The plan itself is bad enough,” he said. “The program itself is bad enough. But to have a president mislead the American people the way he did is absolutely inexcusable.”
King urged Republicans to reconnect with “rank-and-file people” while claiming that “the media and the so-called elites” would not be supporting Republicans in the future.
Before meeting with Republican activists in the state, King said he plans to decide on a White House bid within the next 18 months.
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