Maverick No More! "Country First", it ain't. John McCain has reduced himself into a bitter, senile, grumpy old man who still holds a grudge for losing the Oval Office to the black guy. For the last week, John McCain breathed fire and rage demanding US Ambassador of the UN, Susan Rice's head on a platter. After Friday's testimony from General Patraeus concerning the Benghazi attacks, McCain emerged to face the media with egg on his face and a coccyx between his legs.
McCain, the 2008 Republican presidential nominee who lost to President Barack Obama, has been one of the most vocal and persistent critics of this administration, even when facts and logic are not on his side. This has been especially true in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, which claimed the lives of four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens.
In recent days, McCain, alongside his longtime friend and colleague Sen. Lindsey Graham, McCain has renewed right-wing claims that the administration has been involved in a cover-up around the events that took place. The source of his ire has been reports stating U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice will be tapped to fill the position of Secretary of State to replace Hillary Clinton during the president’s second term.
In the days after the Benghazi attack, Rice made the media rounds and attributed the attack on the consulate to a spontaneous reaction to an obscure YouTube film that disparages Islam and had earlier sparked protests in Cairo, Egypt. As more information was obtained by the CIA, this was revised to note the possibility of the attacks have been planned and carried out by an Al Qaeda offshoot.
It’s not quite clear what exactly McCain and others in the conservative media believe is the scandal here, other than their assertion that the president and his administration have not called what happened in Benghazi a terrorist attack. Obama has repeatedly referred to the incident as an act of terror, though that does not seem to please his conservative critics. Perhaps they are looking for a response similar to that of Obama’s predecessor post-9/11, in which he vows to hunt down those responsible, invades Libya, drains the country of resources, and entangles the U.S. in another long war with no endgame or exit strategy.
Republicans have tried to build a narrative that Obama has diminished U.S. standing across the globe and failed to protect Americans at home and abroad. Aside from false claims about the president’s plan for military spending and apologizing for America, the Benghazi attack is the only evidence they have to support their claims.
The Obama administration has mishandled this affair, to be sure, and any number of violent unnatural deaths is a tragedy, but insofar as the idea that they have been involved in a cover-up, there is no there there.
With that in mind, McCain seems to be more invested in settling a personal vendetta against the president than adhering to any principled critique of him, his administration, or its policies. The once well-respected statesman has become little more than a partisan attack dog.
His opposition to the idea of Rice as Secretary of State (the administration has not nominated her, and says it has no plans for considering who will fill the cabinet positions that are opening up next term until at least after Thanksgiving) is petty, referring to her as “not very bright" because he feels she passed along misinformation about Benghazi when the facts had been established.
However, the deputy CIA director is on record as saying Rice went on television with the best available information at the time, though the intelligence proved to be incorrect later. He might know this if he had attended the briefing held Wednesday to discuss Benghazi, one which he missed due to what his staff has called a “scheduling error.” http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/11/15/cnn-mccain-ditched-benghazi-hearing-to-hold-benghazi-press-conference/
The once well-respected statesman has traded in his reputation as a “maverick” for that of a sore loser. This isn’t new behavior for him, as Steve Kornacki points out in Salon. To fight tooth and nail when you are clearly in the wrong is deeply misguided and unbecoming of someone of McCain’s stature, yet he appears to have no problem with it. Link
Let's read his statement again: General Petraeus's briefing was comprehensive. I think it was important. It added to our ability to make judgments about what is clearly a failure of intelligence. And he described his actions and that of the, of his agency and their interaction with other agencies and I appreciate his service and his candor.
No questions, no interviews - just get the hell out of there so that no one would ask if he would consider apologizing to both Susan Rice and President Obama. Or is it that he needs to get out of there to re-strategize his previous statements against Susan Rice and re-emerge to double down on his attacks with more baseless allegations?! Apparently the latter is the Republican way!
Whatever McCain does from this point on, he has made himself to be a reckless "sore loser" politician and completely irrelevant.
John, seriously - Time to Retire!
The assisted living center now serves Lemon-Lime Jello with whip cream - Yum!