April 3rd, 2008
05:45 PM ET
2 years ago

Kerry: McCain's foreign policy made us 'weaker'

CNN

Watch John Kerry's interview on The Situation Room.

(CNN)—Sen. John Kerry said fellow veteran John McCain’s military background doesn’t necessarily mean he would be a good commander in chief.

“John McCain can run around all that he wants right now talking about his military experience,” Kerry told CNN’s Suzanne Malveaux, “but he made the wrong judgment about Iraq, he has a foreign policy that has made us weaker.”

He added that the last eight years have been a failure in foreign policy, “and John McCain has supported it in its entirety.”

McCain himself has acknowledged his support of the war in Iraq could cost him the presidency.

Pointing to former President Ronal Reagan’s lack of military experience, Kerry explained presidents have overcome not having a military background by knowing who to ask questions of, and surrounding themselves with people who do share military experience.

Kerry, who endorsed Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential run earlier this year, said military experience has value, but judgment means more. “[Obama] has a very clear vision on how to make America stronger,” the Massachusetts senator said.

UPDATE: A Republican National Committee spokesman blasted Kerry's comments. “John Kerry has absolutely no credibility on Iraq. Kerry’s attacks on Iraq ring hollow considering his inability to offer a consistent much less coherent stance on the issue," said RNC spokesman Alex Conant in a written statement. "Kerry would be better off trying to explain why Barack Obama broke his promise and voted against troop funding for our men and women in uniform.”

–CNN's Emily Sherman


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John Kerry • John McCain
soundoff (144 Responses)
  1. Geri

    As long as you know so much, why didn't you get elected president
    Mr. Kerry???

    April 3, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  2. akaDoug

    I just love how the Clintonazis are running around screaming like little children, because Kerry is running down the opponent!

    It's clear the Billary people enjoy the war and the poor economy, because they would rather back a pro-war, no economic-plan Republician than a black man that speaks well and is in agreement
    with 98% of the policies as their candidate!

    How bitter and sad can one group get?

    April 3, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  3. Tejano

    The year of the traitor. What else is coming down America way.

    The world is waiting for America to fall apart so they can pick up the bones. Keep it up Democrats you are almost there. Maybe what Rev. Wright was right after all,and he is helping it along by giving us his protegy to speed up the process.

    April 3, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  4. dem08

    KERRY PLEASE STOP! JUST STOP! ENOUGH OF THAT HOT AIR COMING OUT OF YOU MOUTH! YOU MADE THE WRONG JUDGMENT ON IRAQ. YOU VOTED FOR THE WAR TOO. REMEMBER? WHO ARE YOU TRYING TO FOOL. YOURSELF? DON'T YOU KNOW HOW INCREDIBLY STUPID YOU LOOK. THATS ONE BIG REASON POLITICIANS LIKE YOU THAT I WILL NOT SUPPORT YOUR CANDIDATE. SENATOR MCCAIN IS AN AMERICAN HERO WHO SERVED HIS COUNTRY- OBAMA NOT! AND WHO HAPPENS TO BE VERY PATRIOTIC, LOYAL TO HIS COUNTRY-OBAMA NOT! I DON'T HAVE TO WORRY THAT HE HAS TIES WITH ANTI-AMERICAN PEOPLE. HE IS A TRUE AMERICAN-OBAMA NOT! I WILL BE VOTING FOR HIM HERE IN FLORIDA, IF HILLARY DOES NOT GET THE NOMINATION-OBAMA NOT! WAIT.... DIDN'T OBAMA VOTE TO FUND THE WAR? ALWAYS TRYING TO HAVE IT BOTH WAYS. YET YOU TRY TO COME DOWN ON HILLARY AS IF SHE WAS THE ONLY ONE WHO VOTED FOR THE WAR. PLEASE GIVE ME A BREAK! YOU ARE SUCH A FAIRY TALE.

    GO HILLARY

    GO MCCAIN

    April 3, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  5. TC in Ohio

    Well said John Kerry! I voted for you in the last election, but ...well you know the rest.

    April 3, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  6. John

    It makes no sense to be harsh on John Kerry.He was in Vietnam fighting day and night.I think you should direct your anger to dubious swift boat squad.Did McCain stand out on an open podium and condemned the swift boat squad?????????? .Not much! To blame John Kerry is inappropriate. Whoever John Kerry supports for presidecy is his right.

    April 3, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  7. HAM

    OMG.... You're kidding right.... Ha Ha

    Obama/Clinton
    HYPOCRACY – 08

    April 3, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  8. j kERRY

    yOU ARE HISTORY FOR ME. tO THINK THAT i ONCE SUPPORTED YOU. WHAT A SHAME. YOU ALL ULTRA LIBERALS WANT TO WASH AWAY THE SINS OF WHITES BY ELECTING AN INEXPERIENCED , NOVICE, UNACCOMPLISHED CANDIDATE WHO'S TIES WITH A NATIONALIST SUPREMIST RACIST YOU ARE WILLING TO IGNORE BECAUSE .........IT IS AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH.
    COWARDS

    April 3, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  9. AMK

    Dear John,

    Thanks for losing the election for us to Bush in '04. You really know what you're talking about.....

    Sincerely,

    Democrats

    April 3, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  10. kim portland, oregon

    the reason mccain is such a horrible, unnacceptable option is b/c he USED TO BE a tad more moderate, he rightfully questioned the war (as all the PROFESSIONAL military leaders did when they saw that the white house was lying to get us into war). not only is he a flip flopper, he has no integrity.

    i started to lose all respect for him when he started kissing bush on the cheek; and now he has flip flopped YET AGAIN and become a complete bush "republican" with his support for the war, lack of even the basic knowledge of the economy by his own admission. geez people, what does he have to do before you'll see how incredibly dangerous and clueless this guy really is?!?! he just told you that while we are at one of the worst times in US HISTORY economically, this fool ADMITS he has no idea how to handle it. and his comment about the people--admittedly true to a point--shows his loyalty is with big business.

    go look up his voting record, his votes match bush's politics exactly!

    April 3, 2008 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  11. Christopher, Madison, WI

    Hey Cheryl,
    Newsflash
    McCain was against torture and is now for it.
    He was against Bush's tax increases and is now for them.
    He changed position on the illegal immigration front.
    He denouced the "Christian Right" and is now kissing up to them.

    April 3, 2008 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  12. Ken, Tucson, AZ

    John Kerry attempted to use his military experience to justify being elected Commander-in-Chief. Remember "John Kerry reporting for duty... I'm ready to serve"?

    April 3, 2008 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  13. Kelly Anne

    "UPDATE: A Republican National Committee spokesman blasted Kerry's comments."

    The RNC is the one with no credibility.

    Kerry was right on Iraq, and now Americans agree.

    If we had elected Kerry in 2004 we would have 3000 US soldiers still alive, and 50,000 not missing limbs and without head wounds.

    Vote for McBush > 8000 dead soldiers

    April 3, 2008 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  14. D.Casey

    A good president surrounds himself or herself with experts in whatever field is required. There are plenty of smart, honest generals with experience to advise Obama, should he win. The key here is that a president show GOOD JUDGMENT in selecting those experts and in making decisions based on their input.

    Something the current president failed miserably at. And something, I suspect, that McCain'ts ego wouldn't let him do anyway!

    April 3, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  15. Steve in Seattle

    After carefully reading the racist philosophy on the website of Obama's church of 20 years....I think we should stop using Obama's name and the phrase "good judgement" in the same sentence.

    Maybe all white people should vote for Obama. If we vote for a candidate that is black, a racist, and a socialist (Black Liberation Theology), then maybe we can once and for all rid ourselves of guilt over slavery and segregation. We could kind of "call it even"!

    April 3, 2008 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  16. Joe in CA

    what a sore loser!

    April 3, 2008 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  17. Obama/Eduard

    Wow...
    The republicans joined the loosers to attack the legend...
    McCain alzheimer will worsen before November. I'm afraid he will vote for Obama. Better start taking DONEPIZEL

    Obama/Eduard

    April 3, 2008 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  18. concerned voter

    Hillary
    i will write your name in if your not the nom..... Obama cant win for sure, as he has no experience....Independent! yes Hillary go Independent! you will win hands down... or its gotta be Mc caine...experience counts...

    April 3, 2008 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  19. Pam M

    This is directed to Irwin, Thousand Oaks, CA who wrote:
    (speaking of John McCain) "anyone can get captured. BIG DEAL."
    Irwin: You ought to learn a few facts about John McCain's family
    history and personal military achievements so that you won't look
    like such an idiot.
    You should know that John McCain flew 22 missions from 1958
    to 1967 when his plane was shot down over Hanoi on his 23rd mission. During his service to our country, he earned approx.
    70 military decorations and awards (50 of which are for combat)
    including the Medal of Honor, the Silver Star, the Legion of Merit,
    the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Bronze Star and the Purple
    Heart. Do some research and check it out.
    Irwin – I don't care what your politics are . . you should be ashamed.

    April 3, 2008 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  20. A.M. Saqib

    'George McCain'...oops! 'John McCain' is nothing but opportunist and manipulating his time in vietnam for political advantage. Good try.. but tell your story to some one who cares. If we vote for him, he will make America declare "International Bankcruptcy"., a thought of him in white house gives a chill....

    A.M. Saqib
    Houston, Texas

    April 3, 2008 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  21. prakash chand

    What do you care Mr Kerry?

    What have you done for this country? lost to George Bush.

    YOU should shut up and help your wife make ketchup.

    April 3, 2008 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  22. Sunny

    How many times do we have to hear that obama had good judgement? Does one decision make it or break it? Are we just basing his whole presidency on one judgement? This is annoying. If I hear anymore about judgement from obama or supporters, I will vomit!

    April 3, 2008 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  23. ny independent

    Are Sen. Kerry and other Obama backers trying to hand the election to one of his opponents? This only reminds voters how lousy prior Dem candidates were. P.S. to John, McCain did openly condemn the swift boat nonsense – more than once – google it.

    April 3, 2008 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  24. joe

    Any one Kerry endorses is not getting my vote - what a loser. Quiet down Kerry you have been a pain in the butt for this country for too long. Get out of politics or move to some other country - just leave us alone.

    April 3, 2008 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  25. Reality check #1

    One of the sorriest things I have done is when I voted for Kerry. I cannot believe that he endorsed Obama, he has lost all my respect. If Obama gets the nomination, that's one Democrat I won't waste a vote on!

    April 3, 2008 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
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