Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush is joining the criticism of Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzPompeo to speak to influential Iowa GOP group Top National Security Council aide moved to Energy Department role Ted Cruz takes aim at Alabama vasectomy bill: 'Yikes' MORE (R-Texas), Bush's GOP presidential rival, for opposing the National Security Agency's (NSA) bulk phone records collection program.


"I completely disagree with Ted Cruz on this," Bush said during an appearance on "Fox & Friends" on Monday, days after a deadly terror attack in San Bernardino, Calif.

"This is a part of a comprehensive strategy to protect the homeland. Civil liberties are not being violated," he added.

The Associated Press reported over the weekend that under the new USA Freedom Act, investigators could only obtain roughly two years of the two married suspects’ phone data directly from the phone companies, instead of five years' worth.

Cruz voted earlier this year to rein in the NSA's bulk metadata collection program. Bush's rival, Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioCheese, wine importers reeling from Trump trade fight Peace Corps' sudden decision to leave China stirs blowback Lawmakers raise concerns over Russia's growing influence in Venezuela MORE (R-Fla.), has also gone after Cruz on the issue.

Bush said Monday that the NSA metadata program "is an essential tool for us to be kept safe."

The Republican presidential candidate also blasted President Obama for his Oval Office speech Sunday night, in which the president discussed his strategy to defeat the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

Bush said Obama should have called for restoring the NSA program.

"It was a disappointing speech, to say the least," the former Florida governor said, suggesting the president’s address was also light on specifics for new military action in the U.S.-led effort to defeat ISIS.

"Look, this is a threat to our way of life," Bush added. "We are at war with radical Islamic terrorism."