At the Republican presidential debate in California, the libertarian-leaning Texas lawmaker suggested that the September 11th attacks resulted in part from big government regulations.
"Just remember, 9/11 came about because there was too much government," he said. "Government was more or less in charge. They told the pilots they couldn't have guns, and they were told never to resist. They set up the stage for all this."
After saying airlines should be responsible for the securities of passengers - not government bureaucrats - Paul added: "And look at the monstrosity we have at the airports."
"These TSA agents are abusive," he said. "Sometimes they're accused of all kinds of sexual activities on the way they maul people at the airport."
The comment prompted a joke from moderator Brian Williams: "I'll give them your best at LAX tonight." LAX is the Los Angeles international airport.