King, the leading Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee said Tuesday on NBC's Today Show that it will be more difficult for authorities to get useful information from the suspect if he is given the legal rights afforded to defendants in civilian courts, including the right to a lawyer.
"I wish they had put him into a military tribunal so we could get as much intelligence and information out of him as we could and find out if there are any more attacks coming," said King. "My concern is that we did miss the opportunity because once we put him into the criminal justice system he gets a lawyer and he gets Miranda rights."
The suspect, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, has been charged in federal court with trying to detonate the device as the plane approached Detroit last Friday. The device burst into flames instead, according to authorities, and he was subdued by passengers.
King, also stressed that political correctness should take a backseat to useful profiling.
"Listen if you're focusing on the Mafia you go into the Italian community, if you're going after the IRA you go into the Irish community, Irish bars," said King, a former supporter of the Irish Republican Army's struggle. "To me it's not kidding anyone, we're just living in a politically correct world to say that we should be screening a Scandinavian grandmother the same way we do a Middle-Eastern male. The reality is our enemy comes from Islamic terror and we should be focused on them."
Despite his criticisms, King said he supported the president's aggressive stance towards terrorism and would support more action around the globe.