Sen. Rand Paul, a potential 2016 presidential contender, took aim at another possible Oval Office candidate – Jeb Bush – over the former Florida governor’s recent comments defending undocumented immigrants.
In an interview on ABC’s “This Week that aired Sunday, Paul said that Bush was inarticulate when he described immigrants who come to the United States illegally as committing an "act of love."
Paul said that those immigrants "are not bad people" but added the United States "can't invite the whole world" inside its borders.
Paul, the Kentucky Republican eyeing a 2016 campaign, says Bush should have kept his focus on controlling the U.S. borders.
Bush says the GOP cannot demonize immigrants and should show compassion. He described illegal immigration as an "act of love" by people trying to provide for their families.
Paul was interviewed on "This Week" during a visit to early nominating New Hampshire.
In a speech in New Hampshire, Paul said conservatives need a bold message to "hit those who haven't been listening" and to keep their political movement growing.
The senator told an audience of conservatives there that the GOP cannot be "the party of fat cats, rich guys and Wall Street."
Paul said conservatives must carry messages of justice, concern for unemployed workers and against government surveillance — if they want to attract new people to the movement, including young people, Hispanics and blacks.
Paul said the conservative movement has never been about rich people or privilege, and that "we are the middle class."
During the New Hampshire event on Saturday, Republicans eyeing the 2016 White House race battered President Barack Obama's health care law and nicked each other, auditioning before the high-profile gathering of conservatives, viewed by some political veterans as the campaign's unofficial start.
"It's the unofficial kickoff of the 2016 process," said Republican operative Mike Biundo, who managed Rick Santorum's last presidential campaign.
A speaking program packed with potential presidential candidates weighed in on the House Republicans' controversial budget, the party's struggle with Hispanics, the GOP's future and the upcoming midterm elections while taking turns on a conference room stage facing hundreds of conservative activists gathered in New Hampshire's largest city.
But the Republican Party's near-universal opposition to the president's health care law dominated the conversation just days after Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius resigned after leading the rocky rollout of the program derided as "Obamacare."
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz declared that one resignation is not enough. "We are going to repeal every single word of Obamacare," said the first-term senator and tea party favorite.
Based on reporting by The Associated Press.