August 7th, 2008
04:30 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain: High price of oil one justification for Iraq war vote

Sen. McCain took questions at a town hall event in Ohio Thursday.
Sen. McCain took questions at a town hall event in Ohio Thursday.

LIMA, Ohio (CNN) – John McCain offered a new justification for the Iraq war Thursday, arguing that if Saddam Hussein were still in power, he’d be a petro-dictator intent on using today's sky-high oil revenues to obtain weapons of mass destruction.

A voter at an Ohio town hall meeting Thursday asked McCain how he would vote on the 2002 war resolution if he had to do it again, given the advantage of hindsight.

“What do you think that Saddam Hussein would be doing with oil at $120, $125, $130 a barrel?,” McCain asked. “What do you think he’d be doing? I’ll tell you what he’d be doing. He’d be doing what he said he was committed to doing. And that’s acquiring and using weapons of mass destruction, which he did twice before.”

The Arizona senator elaborated on his other reasons for supporting the war resolution, including Iraq’s noncompliance with the U.N. mandated cease fire, as well as Saddam’s “brutal” human rights record.

Ultimately, McCain concluded, “If he were still in power, I believe that the world would be far worse off, especially with all the money he’d be making off of oil.”


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (596 Responses)
  1. Gary H

    SRW You know better than to use irony. These guys don't understand it. You haver to come out and say that one of the reasons oil is so high is because Iraq used to be the second largest producer in the world and now produces less than a quarter of it's former output. Remember Dick Cheney saying Iraq oil would pay for the war?

    August 7, 2008 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  2. You Idiot

    You make idiotic comments. Why people come to listen to you God only knows. Get off -you insane. McSurge. Even Paris beat you.

    August 7, 2008 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  3. Franky

    Hey guys, one of the boys was telling me that Senator McCain was going at it with a female voter about Illegal Immigration??? I gotta say, I didn't even see that. Oh boy, I had a feeling we were gonna see that sooner or later...

    August 7, 2008 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  4. Jon

    How stupid is this......... Now you all see John McWar does not need a real reason to go to war. I feel or I think or maybe and he's ready to attack. Let's talk about money , America has spent 40 billion on reconstuction so far in Iraq and yesterday it came out that Iraq has a 110 biliion surpplus of CASH that they're not spending. we're spending American tax payer money to rebuild a contry that we went into because of Bush lies that McCain supported and nowUSA is trillions in debt, American families loosing their homes gas prices so high that just getting to work everyday is a strain. This is just a spin so you think even though we went in for all the wrong reasons it was the right thing to do. I would vote for a dog with 2 legs before i would put my family in the hands of John McCain.

    August 7, 2008 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  5. Amazing!

    So John McCain's argument supports the theory that we went to war in Iraq, not for WMD, not for "liberating" the people, and not to fight terrorism, but FOR OIL?

    Brilliant!

    August 7, 2008 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  6. ulysses

    How exactly could Saddam Hussein have blackmailed us by putting MORE oil on the market? What McCain conveniently ignores is that one of the major reasons for the dramatic increase in the price of oil over the past few years has been the elimination of Iraq as a major producer. Say what you want about the brutality of the secular Saddam Hussein regime, but there are a number of things they had then which are sorely missed now: Law and order on the streets, strong opposition to Islamic extremism, and meaningful production of crude oil.

    August 7, 2008 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  7. Bill MA.

    Well my friends, bush, and mcCain are not alike. mcCain is older, and bush wasn't in the navy.

    August 7, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  8. Troy, Iowa

    How can anyone even remotely defend the loss of over 1million Iraqi's, over 4,000 American military personnel, thousands more wounded without comprehensive Veterans Benefit (which McCain is against) complete distabilization of the Middle East resulting in the continued increasing oil prices, US spending Trillions of dollars on the War which has not made America any safer.....and our lack of credible standing in the world.

    GET THE FACTS AMERICA!!!!!!

    August 7, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  9. AjBezark

    AND... doesn't Gramps realize that the reason Oil prices are so high is because WE STARTED A FRIGGIN' WAR in the middle of oil territory? If Saddam were still there, oil wouldn't have shot up the way it has.

    August 7, 2008 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  10. Yinka

    Senator McCain has learned NOTHING inspite of what we now know about the catastrophoc consequences of the war he voted to fight

    August 7, 2008 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  11. Haas

    So is McCain saying even if Saddam didn't have WMDs going to war would have been justified because of the possibility of Saddam manipulating oil prices? That's not a reason to go to war.
    It sounds to me that the war was about oil all along. Think about how many lives have been lost, American and Iraqi, because Big Oil controls our government. That's why we need change.
    It's a shame how Maveric McCain has become Bush/Cheney/McCain. Same old guys, same old politics.

    August 7, 2008 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  12. Peter

    sure....when you think about, Saddam didnt do squat to the U.S., so when we invaded Iraq rose gas prices!

    August 7, 2008 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  13. John

    I can't believe he said that, he should be writing comic books. It must be the old age kicking in!

    August 7, 2008 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  14. Sarah expat

    That's absolutely disgusting, McCain is using a fear scenario to justify his support of the Iraq war. Typical Republican.
    Who on earth ever labelled him a "maverick"? You need to get your head checked.

    August 7, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  15. CM

    LOL....really reaching for a reason there Johnny.

    So Saddam would have bought WMDs with the US enforcing sanctions and the inspectors looking for them? I seem to remember Saddam allowing then inspectors in right before the US invaded and them finding nothing.

    Admit you went after oil and I may have a shred of respect for you as a politician. I wonder what your excuse will be once the Olympics are done and China lets all those cars back on the road. What do you think that'll do to the worldwide demand and ultimately prices?

    August 7, 2008 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  16. Livonia, MI

    Do you people that hate Iran realize that in one fell swoop, Iran could seriously cripple America's oil supply and cause the prices to skyrocket? Stop bashing and threatening Iran, leave them alone, and let's continue to work toward peace with this great nation. WMDs didn't go over very well before for the Bushies, so now they are trying to scare us with nukes. Sorry, republicans, not buyin' it.

    August 7, 2008 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  17. Joy

    What McCain forgets is that our invasion of Iraq caused this high price of oil.

    Oil was $25 a barrel when we invaded and its now $124 a barrel.

    McSame needs some education or takes pride in arrogant ignorance.

    August 7, 2008 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  18. Rob indetroit

    which is why we are at war MCbush is looney can we risk him as president.

    August 7, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  19. Mark G

    The man is totally off his rocker, and it is getting worst instead of getting better. Whats next, that we are going to invade Iran under his administration? People better think twice b4 voting this lunatic into office.

    August 7, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  20. LINDA

    …Looking at a face like McBush's, doesn't exactly give me...

    "A FRESH FEELING"

    OBAMA 08′
    Yes We Can!!!!!

    Stop all the drama, and VOTE FOR OBAMA!!!!!

    August 7, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  21. A NATION OF WHINERS for OBAMA

    WE ARE CERTAIN THE SCUM BAG WILL

    COME UP WITH AS MANY NEW LIES AS IT

    TAKES TO REPLACE THE OLD ONES.

    August 7, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  22. Rich

    A TRILLION DOLLARS, MILLIONS DISPLACED, MAIMED, AND KILLED IS NOT WORTH ANY AMOUNT OF OIL.

    BESIDES, WE WERE TOLD OVER AND OVER BY THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION THAT THIS WAR WAS ABOUT OIL.

    BUSH WANTED REVENGE AND THE NEOCONS WANTED TO PROTECT ISRAEL.

    August 7, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  23. New Yorker

    McaCain is right. Take the war to them. Let's wait and see what the peace loving radicals will do next- yeah right.

    McCain 08

    August 7, 2008 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  24. God Bless America

    Hussein was not America's enemy or the enemy of this economy!Hussein did not have that much influence to suggest that the whole world is better off without him!

    The FACT IS: AMERICA AND THE WORLD ARE WORSE OFF BECAUSE OF THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION!!!!!

    And no McCain, we WILL NOT give you the opportunity to nail us in the coffin that the Bush administration has put America in!!!!!!!!!

    August 7, 2008 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  25. BWM

    McSane and Bush have no conscience. This country is in serious trouble if McSane is elected. He will use the same excuse to go after anyone who gets in their way .Greed ! Sadaam was no threat to us and over four thousand innocent Americans lost their lives because of lies. And people still would rather have someone who is Bush all over again.

    August 7, 2008 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
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