By Michael Tracey
TAMPA — In order to enter the Republican National Convention, one had to pass through multiple layers of security, which involved so many different law enforcement agencies that I literally lost count. So police issues were on my mind on Wednesday when I spotted Rep. Peter King, the cranky Irish Republican Army apologist from Long Island. I asked if he thought there was any merit to arguments leveled — by both the left and right alike — that police departments across the country have been excessively federalized and/or militarized, with the Tampa security situation being a prime example.
“No,” King stated plainly. “Obviously, we always have to be looking out at all times that the police maintain their proper role. But I think the Department of Homeland Security, and the police I deal with — whether it’s the FBI or the New York City Police Department — no, I think civil liberties are being protected. Privacy is being protected. And considering the nature of the threat against us, I would say the police are remarkably restrained.”