May 15th, 2008
10:30 AM ET
6 years ago

Pelosi blasts, McCain defends Bush comments

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McCain and Pelos reacted to the president's speech.
McCain and Pelos reacted to the president's speech.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Speaker Nancy Pelosi blasted President Bush's comments Thursday suggesting that Democrats believe "we should negotiate with terrorists and radicals" and suggested Senator John McCain denounce them.

But the presumptive Republican nominee himself defended the remarks, said he intended to make Barack Obama’s willingness to consider dialogue with Iran an issue in the fall campaign, calling on the Illinois senator to “explain [that decision] to the American people.”

“It is a serious error on the part of Senator Obama that shows naiveté and inexperience and lack of judgment - to say that he wants to sit down across the table from an individual who leads a country who says that Israel is a stinking corpse, that is dedicated to the extinction of Israel,” said McCain Thursday. “My question is, what does he want to talk about?”

Pelosi, who is leaving later today on a bipartisan congressional trip to Israel, said there is a "protocol" of not criticizing the President when he is abroad, but then declared, "I think what the president did in that regard is beneath the dignity of the office of president and unworthy of our representation at that observance in Israel."

The California Democrat added that she hopes "any serious person would disassociate themselves from the president's remarks, who aspires to leadership in our country."

But McCain told reporters that Bush’s Thursday remarks made an important point. “It does bring up an issue that we are will be discussing with the American people and that is why does Barack Obama, Senator Obama, want to sit down with a state sponsor of terrorism?” said McCain.

“…I will make this an issue with Senator Obama throughout this campaign, I believe in peace through strength, and peace through strength is the way that we have succeeded in the past.”


Filed under: John McCain • Nancy Pelosi • President Bush
soundoff (330 Responses)
  1. mel

    Mccain, he should not be standing behind Bush,it is he who
    have gotten this in ti trouble with terrorist and the economy
    swituation here at home. I believe it will get even worst with
    Mccain as president. How can we fight anything two parties
    are going at each other here at home. Wake-up think of the
    american peoples who you all in office to serve us,not foriegn
    policies. Obama and the dems. party will bring change I truly
    it.

    May 15, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  2. SGS

    Hey McCain-Who's your REAL friend. Now we know. Stay tied to the president with the lowest approval ratings in recorded history. Says plenty about you and your campaign staff. WOW....

    May 15, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  3. Kevin

    yeah, peace through strength has gotten us real far in Iraq, you idiot.

    May 15, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  4. alvaro acosta

    I just do not understand how the people of the USA elected and reelected Bush to be in the White House. I just do not comprehend that, at all!!!!

    alsipu...

    May 15, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  5. Alex NYC

    Yes, Senator McCain... in the PAST. Senator Obama doesn't want to use the privilege to talk to our leaders as a bargaining chip anymore. That's the kind of FUTURE thinking we need in this time.

    May 15, 2008 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  6. SGS

    FLASHBACK #1

    May 15, 2008 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  7. HillarySkank on myspace

    John McCain, you've used up any goodwill I felt towards you for your hero status during Viet Nam. You are going to lose this election and you need to explain to the American People why you are so opposed to ending this war NOW instead of at the end of the the next President's term of office.

    To follow Sen Biden's lead, Bush's comments are BS and so are yours!

    May 15, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  8. Ticked off Democrat

    Okay, I'm a Democrat and I don't think what Bush said was bad. Is this goign to be a no-pick on Obama campaign. Give me a break. I agree with Bush. If Obama wants to play peacekeeper with terrorists who if given the chance would stop at NOTHING to eliminate Israel and the U.S. He is being naive if he thinks they want to have a heart to heart with him. Pulease! Obama loses my support more and more each day. Obama has some explaining to do.

    May 15, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  9. Linda in Va

    McCain is the loser that Bush is. Bush should be more than blasted, I'd say behead the arse. I can not believe that this president represents the good people of the USA, what a shame.

    May 15, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  10. Bob Texas

    Yes Mr. McCain we just bomb every country that does not do what we tell them. That is really great deplomacy!

    May 15, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  11. Mike from CA

    JOHN MCCAIN'S FLIP-FLOPS
    1) he was for abortion and now he is against it
    2) He was pro-gay marriage and now he is against it
    3) he said it's irresponsible to set a timetable in Iraq but he said we would have most troops out by 2013
    4) Was pro-ethanol and now is against it
    5) Was against torture but is for waterboarding
    6) Was against Bush's tax cuts and now he wants to make them permanent.
    7) Says he is against lobbyists but has 51 on his staff

    This guy is a walking contradiction and doesn't deserve to be President of the united states.

    May 15, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  12. Rich

    "Peace through strength?" Yeah that's been working out just great, John. Notice how we've pissed off all our allies? Oh, and do you honestly think that having troops in Iraq for 100 years would be peaceful and welcomed like having troops in Germany after WWII? What was that word you used before – naiveté?

    What idiots. You may be able to pander to uneducated people who don't follow the news, but the Jewish people I know are way too smart to fall such juvenile tactics.

    May 15, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  13. An Agnostic Democrat

    Grampy McSame already appears to be having problems with diarrhea at both ends of his alimentary canal. We can correct the one end with Depends, the other end, as is evident, has much more dire consequences.

    And he wants four years in office to do what?! Carry the Bush torch to the Apocalyptic Olympics in the Middle East? Geez! What a doddering, misguided, short-sighted, old dolt!

    May 15, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  14. Rev TJ Conwell

    Has Nancy Pelosi ever said anything that made any sense? First she said that it is not protocol to denounce the President when he is away, but ... Nancy, listen to your own rhetoric!! You quoted the policy (good job getting that right), but that does not mean you get to run your mouth afterwards and say what you want.

    It is like saying, "I don't want to gossip, but ...." Come on lady, just stop.

    I do ask the same question as Senator McCain ... Why would Mr Obama want to chat with a man who says that a nation like Israel should be wiped off the face of the Earth? Does anyone really think the leadership in Iran is going to listen to an "American", regardless of his ethnic make-up? Come on people ....

    May 15, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  15. ed fl

    HEY JOHN your mouth is open again and this time Lieberman is not around to whisper in your ear. You ought to keep quiet before all americans see how dumb you seem to be

    May 15, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  16. JJ

    McCain, McCain, McCain, you too. We know Bush has no idea of what is going on unless the press informs him, what's your excuse. Let's not use fear tactic's in the campaign, what can you do for your country that will bring it out of the current downward fall. you have a lot to choice from: Gas prices, Housing, Jobs, Tax breaks for the rich.

    May 15, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  17. sam

    Talk?

    Why talk,

    McCain just wants to BOMB, BOMB, BOMB, BOMB, BOMB, IRAN!

    Much easier!

    McCain 08

    May 15, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  18. Greg Pa

    Pelosi is worse than bush. Even if you disagree with going to Iraq i bet you don't agree with cutting troops supply's short. makeing them wait for ammo , food ,water ect. She held up all those things to push he own agenda. Even after bush told her he would not sign a bill that had deadlines

    May 15, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  19. catty

    McCain is right. What will they talk about? Does Obama have the arrogance to believe that he can somehow make Hamas NOT hate Israel? That by his mere presence, Hamas will let go of all their anger, forget their "injustice" and just walk away? Stupid liberals live in a fantasy. Welcome to Realtiy! Israel is our ally, NOT hamas!

    But them I'm sure pelosi thinks all it would take to bring peace to the middle east is some group therapy and singing kumbaya!

    May 15, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  20. Alonzo Demetrius - FL

    Yeah, yeah, Pelosi. I really shouldn't do this but I will anyway. Isn't that what she said here? Is it any wonder the whole world sees the US as crazy???

    May 15, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  21. Susan MO

    Appears McSame and Bush are in-sync and campaigning together.

    Tell me how naive it is tho that Bush's people are suggesting and actually having low level talks with Iran as we speak.

    Same old old old politics.

    May 15, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  22. God Bless America

    WHY WILL YOU MAKE IT A CAMPAIGN ISSUE WITH SENATOR OBAMA? DIDN'T YOU CALL HILLARY ON HER WV WIN!!!!!!

    ISN'T "SHE" THE ONE THAT YOU ARE RUNNING AGAINST!!!!!!!!!

    100 YEARS , 4 YEARS, APPLES, ORGANGES, BIN LADEN, HAMAS
    PEACE THROUGH WAR, WITH BUSH, NOT BUSH

    SOUNDS LIKE SENILITY!!!!

    May 15, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  23. FedUpinJax

    Why not give diplomacy a chance for once? How far has 5 years of war and no diplomacy gotten us in Iraq? Absolutely NOWHERE!

    May 15, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  24. D Alan

    Let me see.. Bush has an approval rating around 20 percent, question: who is out of touch with mainstream America?

    May 15, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  25. Tangie

    MCCAIN DOES NOT KNOW WHAT THE HELL HE WANTS TO DO...HE HAS BEEN FLIP FLOPPING FOR THE PAST WEEK AND HAS GOTTEN AWAY WITH IT. THE MEDIA NEED TO START CALLING MCCAIN ON THE CARPET W/ HIS FLIP FLOPPING. BUSH CONTINUED TERM'

    OBAMA 2008

    May 15, 2008 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
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