July 25th, 2008
12:45 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama sidesteps Bush criticism

Obama and Sarkozy held a press conference Friday.
Obama and Sarkozy held a press conference Friday.

PARIS, France (CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama said Friday he was avoiding criticizing President Bush on his trip through Europe.

Speaking to reporters, the Democratic presidential candidate cited a tradition that "you don't criticize a sitting president while overseas," adding that "it's very important" that U.S. foreign policy is presented "in one voice."

"I can say affirmatively an effective U.S. foreign policy will be based on our ability not only to project power, but also to listen and to build consensus. And the goal of an Obama administration in foreign policy would be, obviously to act on behalf of the interests of the security of the United States, but also to listen to our allies," he said.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (247 Responses)
  1. Marc, Canada

    Why Obama isn't getting 100% support from my American friends vs. John McCain is mind boggling.

    Obama is one of the most intelligent, analytical, thoughtful, insightful, inspirational and kind politicians ever to walk the face of the earth while McCain is a serpant with a smile. One with a narrow minded approach to politics and a temper that is sure to keep my American friends at war for years to come.

    July 25, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  2. Very Impressed!!!!

    That is F-R-E-A-K-I-N-G Presidential all the way. This is a smart man. OMG!!!! I am so impressed. What Experience?

    July 25, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  3. obama

    Wow, Obama got a treatment that was to extended to Mcsame March visit to France..join News conference, What does that tell you mcsame supporters?

    July 25, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  4. Doris,Memphis,TN

    Very good answer Senator.
    You made many Americans proud this week!

    July 25, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  5. Big Bill

    Barack U think the Europeans are as gullable as your supports, they know U want to have them foot the bill and get bogged down for years in our fight so U can get some money for your giveaway programs.Well lets start with the money we are dumping in Iraq is all borrowed we have to pay that back plus interest granted U did say go in the first place but U have voted for every $$ after U got to congress. Also once people understand your proposals and thats all they are the details and the debt U will leave our childrens children will end the love affair.

    July 25, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  6. Heather in Boston

    Once again, Obama shows the world how he got where he is; by hitting the road and getting people involved in the political conversation who had previously been disenfranchised, by the existing power structure. Many of his suprising results in the primaries, that didn't show up on the polls came from people who are usually not counted. He will do internationally, what he has done across the nation; build a strong coalition of separate voices, participating fully in each debate, not cynical, disenfranchised, holding back to wallow in their own interests and resentments.

    July 25, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  7. Joe Regis

    Obama's presidency is an aspiration to America.

    Obama 08/12.

    July 25, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  8. Obama 08

    It'll be so great when Barack's persident and we can actually be proud when our president visits foreign countries. He's cheered instead of being burned in effigy.

    July 25, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  9. Becky Sue

    This man I can follow ... I can not follow McCain.

    These comments with regards to Bush project respect for the office of the Presidency.

    His comments yesterday project humility for our country and himself as our potential leader.

    We will remain a Superpower but we can leave the bravado and the bluster behind to build effective teams.

    July 25, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  10. zolesh

    McCain is supposed to be the matured one for his age but what do we see.

    He takes cheap shots after cheap shots at every opportunity he gets.He even has the nerves to question Obama's patriotism by suggesting that Obama wants the troops to fail in Iraq.

    Obama on the other hand has continued to be civil and focused on the isssues not falling for subtle baits from the press to stoop low as McCain has been doing all week.

    I guess the claim that the press is in love with Obama is just an illusion.The real intention of the press is to derail his campaign.

    That is all they have been trying to do all along and that is why they are always following him around just looking for that singular moment Obama would make a slip so they can seize on it.

    Obama has been too smart for them and they are clearly baffled

    Obama we wish you a safe trip home.You have demonstrated that even though you are new in Washington, you have the political skills and judgment required to move this nation forward in the years ahead.

    God bless you Obama and continue to be positive and don't stoop low.Come home and expose the McCain campaign for what they truly are.

    July 25, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  11. Marc, Canada

    SKadams, OBAMA writes most of his own speeches. Could you ever imagine McCain trying to do that?

    July 25, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  12. RealityKing

    This was a stab at Clinton and Pelosi. Who so freely bashed Bush everywhere they went over seas. Sorry Obama.., your fellow progressives have already set that precedent, your wallowing for morality now just doesn’t cover it..

    July 25, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  13. kayla

    Keep up the good work Sen. Obama. your hard work will eventually be paid off.

    July 25, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  14. Whatever

    You people criticizing Obama on this blog are just jealous of him and it's sad. He took the challenge and went overseas. The Repugs thought he'd fall on his face but he did the complete opposite and now they don't know how to handle it. Now Obama is coming home and he will shift the debate now to economic policy which John McCain is clueless about. It's amazing to me that the people on this ticker think that it's acceptable for John McCain to insinuate treason against another public official. It's amazing what people and the media have allowed this man to get away with, while every little speech is critiqued of Obama. John McCain will lose in November because he is unfit to be President. He is not running a respectable campaign like he promised and he has no platform to run on accept the surge.

    July 25, 2008 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  15. Erica

    Hey,
    If you don't like him, don't vote for him. For those of you saying we aren't taking care of America first-you probably voted for those in the administration now, who aren't taking care of America. If we wanted to do that, we wouldv'e charted the course and impeached the loser or at least not have let him cheat the second time around.
    Obama is doing his job and all of you saying that he isn't-wait until you lose your home after McCrazy becomes president

    July 25, 2008 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  16. Nia Hussein- Phoenix, AZ

    how many times does Obama have to say it for the media to listen and stop looking for "gotcha" moments. that is the only reason they went over there...looking for another Rev. Wright gotcha moment to advance their ratings and when they didn't get it, they critizied his visit.

    July 25, 2008 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  17. ARB

    Just like President Obama, he can't give a definite answer, always has to "sidestep" past difficult things.

    July 25, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  18. squeek

    It's rare to get a leader who has a vision and knows how to implement it and rally the people so that they as "one can" accomplish their goal. If you Obama critics continue to buck against him and place McCain in office, don't expect anything good to come of it. This is a once in a lifetime chance to get someone who can see a much bigger picture (strategy) vs a small piece (tactic). McCain maybe a war hero but he's a fighter at heart and will find another war to fight because that's what war does to people.
    Let's finally do something without only seeing the small piece for once. THANKS

    July 25, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  19. Remy

    Obama's trip may be a campaign trip or an introduction trip of a new president. Those write against Obama must realise the impact of Obama in those countries.

    Can McCain do the same because once he challenged Obama to make trips like these?

    July 25, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  20. Carol, Lansing Michigan

    You aren't supposed to criticize another Presidential candidate, of course McCain hasn't HONORED that!

    July 25, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  21. Henry n New York

    He gave Bush more respect than Bush gave him – remember the comments made by Bush a few months ago in Israel

    July 25, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  22. Canadian immigrant

    Truly diplomatic ... that's how you make friends

    July 25, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  23. Jay

    Excellent response.

    July 25, 2008 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  24. Irma in North Carolina

    All you out there who think Mccain is so great just keep it up and vote for him, and we will have four more years of Bush. I lived through the racism in the fiftys and sixtys and now some of you are causing it to materialize all over again.

    July 25, 2008 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  25. Ed

    So he is "avoiding criticizing President Bush," yet he is lecturing to the sitting administration how it should be conducting its foreign affairs. This is so obnoxious and presumptuous. If there is one thing I relish with ever fiber of my being, it will be the look of horror and tragedy on the faces of Arianna HuffnPuff, Donna Brazil-nut and David Gurgle when Obama gets romped in November.

    July 25, 2008 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
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