Retired U.S. Gen. Wesley Clark, a supporter of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, on Sunday questioned whether Sen. John McCain’s military experience qualified him to be commander-in-chief.
The McCain campaign called for Obama to condemn the remarks.
The dust-up began with Clark’s appearance Sunday on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” where moderator Bob Schieffer asked him about his interview with the Huffington Post earlier this month.
In the interview, Clark said McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee, was “untested and untried.”
When Schieffer asked to explain the comment, Clark said he was referring to McCain’s experience, or lack thereof, in setting national security policies and understanding the risk involved in such matters.
“I certainly honor his service as a prisoner of war. He was a hero to me and to hundreds of thousands and millions of others in the armed forces, as a prisoner of war. And he has traveled all over the world. But he hasn’t held executive responsibility,” said Clark, a former NATO commander who campaigned for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2004.
A Democratic blog That I read on occasion said this seemed like a personal attack. No the Swiftboaters who fabricated urban myths about John Kerry made egregious personal attacks. McCain keeps bringing up his record with the clear implication that said record qualifies him to be president. It is not a personal attack to point out the plain and simple truth as General Clark has done. McCain’s record in the military provides him with no special skills or knowledge to be the nation’s Commander-in-chief. Clark was happy to salute McCain’s service and express deep regret at McCain’s war experiences as we all are, but McCain is milking those experiences to give the impression that they give him some unique ability to lead the country. If the public wants an accurate impression, a real sense of the kind of CIC McCain would be just look at who look McCain supported with his Senate votes – McCain Voted With Bush 100 Percent Of The Time In 2008 – So Bush at an historic approval rating of a misly 23% is McCain’s idea of great leadership. Thus voters can expect more of the same old if McCain is elected. Sure the Right will, as is their thin skin dictates whine about how making a fact based case against McCain is an attack, but McCain who has as much experience in strategic command as George W. Bush (none) is the one that should be held to account for his exaggerated qualifications. Senator Obama has no military experience? Bush’s guard service, a device he used to duck out of Vietnam , from the seventies hardly counts and Dick Cheney had four deferments.You don’t hear the same right-wingers saying that Bush and Cheney were not/aren’t qualified to direct the military. This is the typical Republican back biting hypocrisy in which they want to have it both ways. When a Republican candidate has no military background then it doesn’t matter, but if they do, and that is rare in the party of chickenhawks then military experience of any kind is simply the end of the conversation, bring on the crown and anoint their new king. Within the same 24 hour news cycle where the McCain camp was practically in tears over General Clark’s really really hurtful words McCain decided to speak out using one of his many faces, McCain makes the race personal, attacks Obama’s integrity
Indeed, on Friday, McCain took credit for the passage of a veterans’ bill he opposed, and on Saturday, McCain vowed to a group of Latino voters that he’d support an immigration bill he’s vowed to oppose.
Does sounfing like a twelve year old year yard thug having a temper tantrum qualify as a presidential recommendation or more a comment about McCain’s true character. Several more examples of Saint McCain’s flip-floppery at the link. McCain has stood everywhere that a politician can stand on multiple issues. He could legitimately claim he was for or against any bill or issue under the sun depending on what he thinks will play will with a particular audience. Maybe the plan is that should he mange to become president, his polices will be a kind of national cracker jack surprise at the bottom of the box.
Where were these Republican bloggers when right-wing radio’s Rush Limbaugh Mocked McCain’s time as a prisoner of war. Its Ok for the Right to to raging hypocrites, to actually denigrate McCain’s treatment as a POW, but its not OK for Democrats, Independents and moderate Republicans to ask how that experience would make McCain a better president.
THE 2000 CAMPAIGN: THE ARIZONA SENATOR; McCain, in Further Attack, Calls Leaders of Christian Right ‘Evil’ Yet McCain has courted the same religious Right seeking endorsements from such rabid extremists as the Reverends Hagee and Parsley.
Does America want a president that can’t get a grip on his emotions and make rational decisions, John McCain’s temper is well documented. He’s called opponents and colleagues “shitheads,” “assholes” and in at least one case “a fucking jerk.”