March 15th, 2009
10:55 AM ET
5 years ago

Cheney: Obama decisions are putting country at risk

Photo Credit: Josh Rubin/CNN.
Photo Credit: Josh Rubin/CNN.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former Vice President Dick Cheney told CNN's John King Sunday that he believed President Obama's decision to eliminate the use of many of the most controversial interrogation practices used under the former administration had put the country at risk.

Asked whether he thought those moves had made the United States less safe, Cheney said he did. "I think those programs were absolutely essential to the success we enjoy, of being able to collect the intelligence that let us defeat all further attempts to launch attacks against the United States since 9/11," he said on State of the Union. "I think it's a great success story. It was done legally, it was done in accordance with our constitutional practices and principles..."

Watch Cheney tout Bush administration accomplishments

Obama campaigned against those practices, said Cheney, "and now he's making some choices that in my mind will raise the risk to the American people of another attack."


Filed under: Dick Cheney • State of the Union
soundoff (205 Responses)
  1. michael s

    cheney – the whole world thinks differently. it's called progress. and you're a dinosaur. go home to wyoming, write your memoir and be done with it.

    oh and be sure to take care of that heart of yours. your evilness has infected it

    March 15, 2009 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  2. Chaz

    Big Dick, you and your cronies put the country at risk by deciding to invade Iraq rather than going after the terrorists that attacked us. Your spin on 'bringing democracy' came after you saw that you had screwed up thinking that the war was not going to be a "slam dunk"! Isn't it time you stopped lying and twisting facts.

    March 15, 2009 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  3. Kat

    Thank God you no longer have the power to put us in further danger. You, almost single handidly, increased our risk of retribution with your very existence and your blathering justifications for your own blood lust. Just shut the hell up...your reign of terror is over. Again, thank God.

    March 15, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  4. Rudi

    Typical that Cheney would use the word "enjoy" in the same sentence as torture. There are many reasons for less terrorism, the least of which is torturing innocent prisoners. That is what terrorism is and how outraged we are at it. He makes no connection but just assumes we are winning and then takes credit for it based on horrific practices like keeping inmates in a half up and half sitting down position for 8 days at a time in a cell with music blasting and he "enjoys" the freedom we have from such practices.

    And he sleeps at night. Makes you wonder.

    March 15, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  5. Jim

    Legal? Moral? best interest of the Country??? Give me a break!!

    March 15, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  6. just today

    Why is cheney not being charged for WAR CRIMES??

    March 15, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  7. tmcd

    He and Bush should be in jail !....Obama is putting the country at risk???....Give your head a shake Dick.... He along with the rest of the Rush Limbaugh far right GOP morons are trying to rewrite history. He takes no responsibility for the mess this country is in,,,

    March 15, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  8. Ex-Republican

    It was you Dick, You put the country at risk.......tried to turn us into the Halburton Reich.

    You just dont get it .

    Why isnt the Justice Dept arresting this man,......

    March 15, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  9. dave b

    obama lied .... the economy died. thanks to you obamunists the US will become third world , congrats on your "change"

    March 15, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  10. renaldo

    Next time I hear this guy I hope it is a jailhouse interview from a federal prison somewhere.

    March 15, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  11. al

    cheney and bush should be in jail but obama is shooting from the hip on alot of his decisions.

    March 15, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  12. aeo

    The days of this man and his administration are finally over... Please, we don't need his opinions, in fact we didn't want them to begin with. Please Dick, go down to Texas... Grab your boy... and do a little quail hunting.

    March 15, 2009 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  13. scott

    Hypocrisy - if the parties were reversed, we'd have a torrent of right-wing zealots decrying how un-American it is for a former Pres/VP to so undiplomatically criticize/undermine a sitting President. This is just the latest flavor of double-standard. A trillion dollars for "nation building" is ok, if a Republican is in charge, etc, etc, etc,

    GWB was a major setback for this country, yet I think he has enough patriotism not come rushing back out of the gates to fan partisanship.

    March 15, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  14. Gangbusters

    Usually a Republican former VP will not comment on the new administration but this is a unique set of circumstances. Obama is nation building within our own borders. He is perfecting the ideal Socialist State, learning from the procedural errors that delayed the flowering of the first attempt in Russia. Hurray for Mr. Cheney.

    March 15, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  15. Fantomas

    Grrrrrrrr.....The Cheney Monster comes out of its hole to instill fear in the villagers once more....which is all it ever did during its eight year reign.

    March 15, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  16. Alan

    They should send Cheney over to AIG to interrogate the executives who are about to get millions of $$ in bonuses.

    March 15, 2009 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  17. ldk

    Putting the country at risk? LOL. What a joke. YOU, Dubya, and Rove put the country at risk sport. Good thing we've got somebody in there thats willing to clean up YOUR mess.

    March 15, 2009 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  18. Marylander

    Thank God for the end of this horrible man's time in Washington! He is evil! Now I'm listening to Cantor and his whining....I have always been a firm believer in the two-party, checks and balances system, but I'm now rethinking that belief; the Republican party is dangerous to our country!

    March 15, 2009 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  19. Retired tchr

    The "risky" move is to continue to take this "hit man" seriously. This country is worse off for the subterfuge that originated from his office while he was Veep. No proof exists of any valuable information coming from any water-boarded detainee. If you keep repeating a lie long enough, people believe it to be true. Didn't Hitler use that technique?

    March 15, 2009 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  20. Georgia Gal

    Hey Dick, Just because you don't agree with something doesn't make it wrong. And talking about making the country less safe?? Talk about the Pot calling the Kettle black. Take a look in the mirror, Dick ... then you'll really see someone who made the country less safe.

    March 15, 2009 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  21. Richard L

    Cheney said they did "nearly everything we set out to do" in Iraq .

    He sure did. BEFORE 9/11 he had advocated war with Iraq and he found an excuse to do it.

    He sure DIDN'T catch the people responsible for 9/11.

    March 15, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  22. Erik V.

    Dick Cheney's fearmongering reminds me of this old joke:

    Doctor to patient: so, why do you keep snapping your fingers every 10 seconds?

    Patient: It keeps the tigers and elephants away from me.

    Doctor: But there isn't a wild tiger or elephant within thousands of miles of here.

    Patient: Works, doesn't it?

    Cheney and many others need to be investigated by independent agencies; him, Bush and most of the rest of Congress have done more to destroy this country than any goons from the Middle East.

    March 15, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  23. tom edmister

    dear folks, the cheney-rumfield administration put america at risk by their foolhardiness in thinking iraq could be defeated and pacified with only a 150,000 troops. contrary to their statements about taking advice of military planners they removed anyone that opposed and adequate force for the winning the war and pacifying iraq. the surge would not have been necessary if general shinceki (sp) and other military planners had been listened to instead of being steamrolled by rumsfield and cheney. the brightest spot of their cheny and rumsfield's policy was the arming of the sunni so that there might be a more evenly matched civil war rather than another genocide.tom

    March 15, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  24. indy 08

    Dick just misses waterboarding people, who is still listening to this war criminal. Go back to your cave, he is cleaning up the mess you left behind.

    March 15, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  25. julie

    Go away, scary old man. Your tactic of keeping Americans in fear is exactly what the terrorists want. That time is OVER.

    March 15, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
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