September 18th, 2008
02:50 PM ET
6 years ago

Hagel: Palin experience a ‘stretch’

Sen. Chuch Hagel said Palin 'doesnt have any foreign policy credentials.'.'
Sen. Chuch Hagel said Palin 'doesnt have any foreign policy credentials.'.'

(CNN) – Sen. Chuck Hagel has become one of the most prominent Republicans to openly question VP nominee Sarah Palin’s qualifications on Thursday.

"She doesn't have any foreign policy credentials," Hagel said in an interview with the Omaha World Herald. "You get a passport for the first time in your life last year? I mean, I don't know what you can say. You can't say anything."

On her first overseas trip last year, Palin traveled to Kuwait and Germany to visit Alaskan National Guard troops.

In defending her own foreign policy experience, Palin has said that Alaska’s proximity to Russia gives her international expertise. Hagel, a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, called that notion “insulting to the American people.”

"I do think in a world that is so complicated, so interconnected and so combustible, you really got to have some people in charge that have some sense of the bigger scope of the world," he added. "I think that's just a requirement."

Hagel, who broke with fellow Republicans over the Iraq war, has said he will not endorse either major party candidate. The Nebraska senator has said he would have considered being Obama’s running mate and was rumored to be on his VP short list.

Although Hagel is a longtime friend of GOP presidential nominee John McCain, he traveled to the Middle East with Obama in July. Hagel also came to Obama’s defense in May after the Democratic nominee and McCain had a dispute over the best way to deal with Iran.

Hagel, whose Senate term is drawing to a close, is not running for re-election to the Senate.


Filed under: Chuck Hagel • Sarah Palin
soundoff (225 Responses)
  1. Tiffany

    You notice the only republicans willing to speak the truth about the RNC ticket are those who are out of office or on their way out the door.

    Obama 08

    September 18, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  2. Independent in DC

    But she can see Russia from her house!

    September 18, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  3. Latina for Obama (nj)

    To AA...that was funny!

    haha

    YES WE CAN

    September 18, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  4. Debra

    I can see the street and car's from my house, does that give me the ability to be the Transportation Secretary. Palin was a political ploy by McCain to get the Hillary Clinton voters. What McCain didnot equate in this decision is that not just any woman will do, Palin and Clinton are total opposites on the issues and finally, I can't think of many woman (and some men as well to be fair) in the political arena that are Clinton's equal.

    Obama/Biden 08'

    September 18, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  5. RR in AZ

    God Bless you Chuck! We're going to miss you!....Thanks for speaking your mind.....:)

    September 18, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  6. The truth shall set you free!

    Chuck Hagel....the only one brave enough to tell it like it is!

    September 18, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  7. Finally an honest Republican

    Thank you Mr Hagel for speaking the truth. From a Republican this is more than refreshing.

    September 18, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  8. Brookfield Bill

    Gee, didn't Hagel get the memo.? This is not the time for frank honesty!

    September 18, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  9. jason from woodbridge nj

    i think the american public has become too numb from american idol to make any educated voting decisions.

    September 18, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  10. George

    We know that Sarah Palin is just a prop to sway so-called disgruntled former Clinton supporters. On close examination McCain's foreign policy experience isn't much better. After years in a Vietnamese prison camp, I doubt that he can find Vietnam on a map.

    September 18, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  11. cmc

    for pete sake CNN post this and stop the censorship!!!! There is something to be said, when a republican senator is calling it like it is. Amazing what and who else will come out the "closet"

    September 18, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  12. Roland

    Hagel . . . watch out, you'll find the head of a moose in your bed.

    September 18, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  13. Bill

    And Obama's foreign policy credentials is Joe Biden. So what is Hagel's point? I would rather have inexperience at VP than inexperience at the presidential level.

    September 18, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  14. Dr. Mimi De La Cruz

    I KNOW WHAT TO SAY & AMERICANS BETTER

    LEAR TO SAY & STAND FOR THEIR INTERESTS.

    MCSEAZO & HIS SIDEKICK TOGETHER DO NOT

    HAVE THE BRAIN POWER TO RUN CZECHOSLOVAKIA.

    THEY ARE BOTH UNEDUCATED & MENTALLY OFF.

    September 18, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  15. Mike - Texas

    Hagel is a RINO and needs to join the Democratic party

    September 18, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  16. CM

    I guess by the comments some GOP supporters are happy to be blissfully ignorant to the fact that their party is insulting their intelligence.

    September 18, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  17. Walt

    I think stretch is is an understaement. America, the average sergeant in the Army, Air Force, Marines, or Navy has more foreign policy experience than Palin. And, that is not a stetch.

    The average Colonel in the Army, Air Force, Marines, and Navy has more foreign poilcy and executive experience than Palin. And, THAT, is not a stretch!!!

    September 18, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  18. NPA

    Hey I can see the moon from my house, do I qualify as an astronaut?!

    Obama/Biden 08'

    September 18, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  19. Stupid is as stupid does!

    I can see my bosses office from my chair. So that gives me the experience to run my own company. I can also see the highway from my office, so I am an expert on transportation.

    September 18, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  20. Cam

    I have to laugh at all the "prominent republicans" like Romney, Guliani, etc. who have absolutely raped their own political credibility by trumpeting this woman's qualifications.

    I mean, could McCain have picked a bigger train wreck? This woman epitomizes EVERYTHING that is wrong in politics today.

    Good for Hagel to call a spade a spade.....I imagine you'll see a few others do the same to save their own credibility as McCain and Palin head off into the sunset on the bridge to nowhere.....

    September 18, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  21. David

    and Mr Ears is more experienced..at what...padding his resume????

    September 18, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  22. Billy

    Palin doesn't have the experience, knowledge or judgment to be VP. The only thing she has a LOT of is blind ambition.

    September 18, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  23. VIRGINIA will be blue

    I support W.A.S.P. (Woman Against Sara Palin)

    September 18, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  24. kyra

    Sen. Hagel is preaching to the choir and Sara Palin is quickly becoming a joke.

    Vote Obama/ Biden 08!!!

    September 18, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  25. Patty

    I hope more people will bring out these facts. She has no business being in the position of a possible VP of our country. There were plenty of qualified women who McCain could have picked. His judgment is totally wrong.

    September 18, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
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