December 16th, 2008
11:24 AM ET
5 years ago

Cheney says Clinton just what Obama needs

Cheney is praising Obama's new national security team.
Cheney is praising Obama's new national security team.

(CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama's national security team got an endorsement from an unlikely source Monday: Vice President Dick Cheney.

In an interview with ABC News, Cheney called the team - to be headed by Secretary of State-designate Hillary Clinton, National Security adviser Gen. Jim Jones, and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates - "pretty good."

"I must say, I think it's a pretty good team," Cheney said in an interview that aired Tuesday morning. "I think the idea of keeping Gates at Defense is excellent. I think Jim Jones will be very, very effective as the national security adviser."

"While I would not have hired Sen. Clinton, I think she's tough," he also said of Obama's choice for secretary of state. "She's smart, she works very hard and she may turn out to be just what President Obama needs."

The comments come a day after Arizona Sen. John McCain also offered kind words for Obama's national security team, saying it was a group of people he may have chosen himself.

But the seeming praise from high-profile Republicans over Obama's national security team could further rile members of the liberal wing of the Democratic Party - the demographic that strongly supported Obama's candidacy throughout the prolonged Democratic primaries.

"Some on the left say, 'Wait a minute - we voted for change,'" CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider said.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Dick Cheney
soundoff (279 Responses)
  1. obama-mama

    Be afraid. Be very afraid.

    December 16, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  2. Ray Fisher

    This is exactly what I was thinking, the Obama national security team is flawed by having a Clinton onboard, since any time Cheney praises anything it is wise to do the exact opposite!!! Cheney knows that it is merely a matter of time before we have a Hillary Ego Eruption which could destroy Obama's cabinet because she not only has an ego but professes to know everything. Obama must keep her muzzled else he is doomed from the start.

    December 16, 2008 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  3. Hayes

    The real change will be in how America will operate and P.E. Obama has selected a group of qualified and intelligent people who are capable of getting things done.

    December 16, 2008 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  4. Nick, Chicago, IL

    "Some on the left" must be "An anonymous source's" long lost brother. Who on the left? Is there a quote from anyone other than Bill Schneider speculating?
    No doubt there are some nuts that are disappointed, but Obama hasn't even been inaugurated yet. So lets reserve judgement (and manufactured stories about a fractured party) until he's had a chance to actually do something president.
    Moreover, why are we talking about this instead of Bush's midnight repeals of regulations that protect consumers and the environment?

    December 16, 2008 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  5. steve

    Hey Joe,

    You popping pills with Rush now?

    December 16, 2008 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  6. Mix

    So, so much hate. I thought you'd all tone it down after the election. Guess I was wrong. By the way, don't you all have to choose a "cute widdle puppy" for Barry?? Now THAT"S news

    Merry Christmas

    December 16, 2008 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  7. Jan

    thank God the left liberal idiots and haters will have little say–this country is not a one party system–go drink your kool-aid–kids. you were necessary for voting purposes only.

    December 16, 2008 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  8. Dave in Albuquerque

    Cheney will be remembered as America's Cardinal Richelieu, as opposed to Bush's Louis XIII. The whole episode will also be remembered as showing the constitutional wisdom of term limits. Richelieu had an entire lifetime to spin his webs, but Cheney's freedom of action was cut off after eight years. Or as long as I'm spinning analogies, Cheney as Shakespeare's Richard III? In any case, he'll be remembered as the scheming, manipulative individual who saw power as everything and the rule of law as an impediment. Thank goodness he's being shown to the door.

    December 16, 2008 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  9. Jon

    I'm glad Cheney "approves", but does anyone actually care what he thinks anymore, anyways? Did anyone ever care what he thinks?

    December 16, 2008 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  10. Scott NYC Independent

    No really, it was Bush that needed Cheney and Cheney needed Bush. Cheney needed Bush to be the point man, the president while he, Cheney directed policy without taking the responsibility of those actions; Bush needed Cheney because he is incompetient but wanted to be President like a kid wants a toy. Bush also needed Cheney in order to avoid impeachment. The fact is the only reason Bush was never impeached is because we would have been stuck then with Cheney. Its bad enough darth vader was holding the puppet strings OMG if he actually had the power of the pen.. the havoc.

    December 16, 2008 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  11. reggie

    I agree with the Vice President. Obama did a fine job selecting his foreign policy team.

    December 16, 2008 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  12. tiff of Lithia Springs

    Rich,

    I love it. I will donate a closet full of shoes so long as you are a better aim. My husband would certainly like to see that donation happen.

    December 16, 2008 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  13. Drew

    Even in response to his graciousness, the vicious stupidify of the liberals on this commentary is overwhelming. You really are a hate-filled and fanatical bunch of idiots.

    December 16, 2008 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  14. Phil, Ashburn, VA

    Shoes, pie, anything..

    December 16, 2008 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  15. mississippi librarian

    Now if he returns some of that money from halliburton, we may be able to pay for healthcare or something else important!

    December 16, 2008 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  16. laura

    I wouldn't bother to listen to Cheney, if anybody was born to lead the right in the wrong direction, it was he. And our greatest blessing in our nation is that God has permitted us to see the Republican's for what they are and has led us safely away from them into a new land of hope and promise. God has truly blessed America now that the Republican's are on the way out. And I do hope the door hits them in the behind as it swings shut behind them. They deserve it and so much worse.

    December 16, 2008 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  17. julia mullin from Fayetteville, NC

    Who cares what Dick Cheney thinks? If he agrees, maybe Obama should change the whole thing.

    December 16, 2008 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  18. enoughalready

    We've heard very little from cheney(I guess he was busy manipulating the sock puppet, bush) so why start now? His approval rating is even lower than bushes , no one cares what he thinks. go back to Wyoming and shoot a friend or two.

    December 16, 2008 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  19. kj from west palm

    if dick thinks these are good choices, they can not be good choices, unless of course he's just telling a tale.... i can't wait till he's gone!!

    December 16, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  20. Renae

    I can't beieve Cheney can even show his face in public, much less give an interview. He better savor it while he can...his time (thank God!) is almost up. I find it ridiculous that they tried to impeach Clinton over a BJ, but conspiracy, torture, and abuse of power has been A-OK for 8 years with NO CONSEQUENCES in the Bush-Cheney administration. My biggest disappointment in Obama so far is his lack of intention to hold the current administration accountable for their misdeeds and to seek justice. In order to set this country right, we need to expose all that went wrong.

    December 16, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  21. Robin in SC

    In a country divided, does it not make sense to govern from the middle and surround yourself with intelligent, capable people regardless of where they may fit on the political bell curve? As others have said, I'm glad to see competence in the highest offices in the country and believe Obama is doing a remarkable job of putting his cabinet together, recruiting the best people out there to create a team much superior to any we've seen in recent past. If Cheney approves, so what...if he didn't, so what...if the left wing or right wing extremists do not approve, then he must be doing something right!

    December 16, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  22. KJL

    The Republicans know our situation will improve under Obama, so they're trying to make it look like they would have done exactly the same things. It's only political talk, and the noise behind the scenes is no doubt very different.

    December 16, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  23. Saad from NJ

    Thank you Mr. Vice President. Now I feel better.... lol!

    December 16, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  24. pam Eugene OR

    I saw the interview and was very surprised when Cheney openly and proudly said he ok'd using all forms of torture. He said it was the right thing to do and he would do it again. This man is evil and has done serious damage to this country. He is the reason so much of the world hates America. Cheney needs to be in prison and he should have the cell next to Bush.
    So, it does not matter what he says about anything because he will soon be a convicted felon.
    Obama is making brilliant choices.

    December 16, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  25. an84u

    When will this sour mouthed sob go away? From one who's ruined our beloved country with his tripe, I think his advice should be avoided and treated like crap in a sewer before it's permitted to surface. He's a well-poisoner for sure who should be in prison for the rest of his life.

    December 16, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
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