September 7th, 2013
06:52 PM ET
7 months ago

McCain raises impeachment - if boots hit ground in Syria

WASHINGTON (CNN) - After endorsing President Barack Obama's plan to launch military strikes against Syria, Sen. John McCain warned the president would face impeachment if he were to put "boots on the ground."

McCain told Phoenix radio host Mike Broomhead on Thursday that the president had "bungled" the entire handling of the Syria crisis and would open himself up to impeachment hearings if he overstepped the limits of the authorization before Congress.


"No one wants American boots on the ground," McCain told the KYFI audience. "Nor will there be American boots on the ground, because there would be an impeachment of the president if they did that."

While McCain said he still supports the current plan to intervene in Syria, the Arizona Republican's statement seems to reflect his contentious Thursday town hall meeting with some Phoenix constituents. At the meeting, McCain, who has favored a more robust American response to the Syria crisis, faced intense criticism.

"We didn't send you to make war for us. We sent you to stop the war," one man said.

Despite his warning to the president, McCain spoke out in favor of the Syria authorization again Saturday, endorsing former Army Gen. David Petraeus' endorsement of the administration's plan in a tweet.

Only one of three Republicans in the Senate Foreign Relations panel to approve the measure, McCain has vocally advocated for a stepped-up American response to alleged use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government. He even refused to pass the White House resolution out of committee until it included provisions to bolster Syrian opposition forces deemed moderate.

McCain's support for action hasn't stopped the Arizonan from blasting his former 2008 presidential rival for inaction.

In an interview on CNN's "The Situation Room" on Tuesday, McCain told Wolf Blitzer the president needed to "explain to the American people" why urgent action in Syria is necessary. The Republican senator also said President Obama made a mistake by consulting Congress instead of immediately launching a bombing campaign against the Syrian government.

"It's common sense you don't warn them and give them plenty of time to disperse," McCain said.


Filed under: John McCain • President Obama • Syria • Uncategorized
soundoff (1,005 Responses)
  1. jcinter

    It was a very good thing that John McCain was a POW for 5 years, so that one less US Naval pilot drop their friendly bombs on us Army grunts in Vietnam. I am still amazed that he picked a full blown airhead doll for his VP running mate, in spite of GOP's objections. The bottom line is, who cares what he said, an idiot stays an idiot.

    September 8, 2013 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  2. zarkus

    McCain can not get over the fact that he lost the election to an African-American or that he(McCain) was so stupid to pick Sarah Palin as a running mate.

    September 8, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  3. ncmathsadist

    McCain is a treacherous snake. Obama should steer clear of him. Obama should also steer circumstance so he does as little as possible in Syria. Why? There are no "good guys" to act on the behalf of. That country is filled with factions, all of which are inimical to the US. We had best stay as far away as possible. Why back one band of brigands, murderers and thieves over another?

    September 8, 2013 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  4. wow

    wow. you are or you aren't? – eee. someone vote this guy away from lawmakers please!

    September 8, 2013 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  5. phoddo

    Wait, McCain knows the plan... and here we thought he was too busy playing poker...

    September 8, 2013 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  6. Bearded Beard

    Ha. As a friend said, it goes beyond "boots on the ground". We don't want ANY kind of attack whether by ground OR air! This is ridiculous. I'm not into politics, so the fact I'm even doing half the things I have been since word first came about Syria, is saying a lot (for me anyhow).

    September 8, 2013 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  7. Jordan

    benster-
    Everything Obama did bad and didn't fix is obama's fault.
    Everything Obama did good isn't something Obama can take credit for.

    Yup sounds pretty lopsided in your thinking.

    Obama gave the order for the strike on Osama, not GW.
    Obama has followed through in iraq and afghanistan by plans laid out by Bush's administration.
    The film "Innocence of Muslims" was pushed by Fox news for well over a month before obama's administration said anything about it.
    Um...what else *scrolls back up*
    oh yeah, Obama's not in charge of the IRS; the guy Bush put into the head of the IRS was in charge of the IRS

    I'm not an Obama lover; some things he's doing right, a lot of things he's not doing right.
    I would say you should get your facts straight before blabbing over the internet but hey, it's the internet so I only expect the stupidest crowds

    September 8, 2013 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  8. Darwin

    Too bad he didn't threaten GW BUSH with impreachment for throwing 3 TRILLION $$$$ and 5000 lives down the IRAQ TOILET for nothing. Apparently now he's gotten some sense and realizes that REPUBLICANS cannot be the WORLD'S NANNY, spanking all its unruly children. If he had even more sense, he would recommend that we STAY OUT OF THE SYRIAN MESS altogether.

    September 8, 2013 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  9. FSal

    Reagan and North were responsible for the death squads of the Iran-Contra affair where thousands of men, women and children were slaughtered and many others just disappeared in Nicaragua. Reagan may have played the plausible denial game, but that does not relieve him of his criminal involvement.

    September 8, 2013 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  10. mike

    WE all need to tell John MC crazy, you lost the Election, 5 years ago, go home with your ball and play with the grand kids. MIke

    September 8, 2013 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  11. skytag

    I still believe that if McCain were president we would have already taken military action against Syria.

    September 8, 2013 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  12. msmith

    I too am sick of war.Sick of war with rules,when the enemy does not recognize them. The brutality and barbarism our troops have experienced and witnessed has not be answered as it should be.What have we gained by continuing to be the worlds police department? The losses are immeasurable.

    September 8, 2013 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  13. Peter Grenader

    OK, we heard you, John. You got your Sunday soundbite. Now we're going to go back to our preseason games. Can't wait to hear from you next Sunday. really

    September 8, 2013 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  14. Engine87a

    Sounds like McCain just woke up for a second and yelled obscenities across the room at a family gathering. I think he should continue to do what he does best...fall asleep and play video poker.

    September 8, 2013 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  15. Kathy, AZ

    There's a reason that all of us in AZ call him "McSame". His warmonger ways NEVER CEASE. He never thinks there's another way to do anything.

    September 8, 2013 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  16. Jolat

    Tis is one of the very rare moments where the far left and far right agree. Stay out of Syria. Both sides are our enemies. Let Allah sort it out

    September 8, 2013 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  17. nytw

    McCain needs to resign, he is a traitor to America.

    September 8, 2013 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  18. SillyKat

    Don't hit on 16 when the dealer shows a six in blackjack.

    September 8, 2013 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  19. Patricia Ogino

    You just don't quit Senator McCain......being a sore loser! How long ago was the election? You have gotten absolutely ridiculous? I can’t figure out if you care more about attacking President Obama then about the real problems we are facing. Listen to yourself over the past several years!!!….. Do you really believe in a Democracy that allows people to vote for their leader because I feel your actions don’t support this idea anymore? You lost. Get over it!!! I am confused by the fact that you agree with the President on Syria and that we need to intervene but at the same time you undermine the President with all your negative remarks on how he bungled it..etc…? This matter with Syria and what we do should be more important than your own personal agenda to constantly find something wrong in everything you feel the President has done wrong. How can you expect support from the people when you confuse them with the idea that our President has screwed things up but yet you want them to support the President’s decision to intervene in Syria? This is the time to work with the President on this and leave out your own personal agenda of constantly finding fault in everything he does. This issue with Syria we are facing is important, so PLEASE, focus on that and stop attacking the President. The country has enough problems with the fact that the majority of Congress is more concerned about only two things which is how to make everything more difficult for the President and the next election. Impeachment? The majority of Congressmen/women should be impeached because real People are suffering and even dying from their lack of effort in taking care of what really matters. Signed, Patricia Aiko Ogino

    September 8, 2013 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  20. ThinkAgain

    McCain and the GOP to President Obama: Damned if you do, damned if you don't. Why? Because the GOP and McCain and the RWNJ and all their lackeys have NOTHING to offer our country.

    What a pack of pathetic fools the right has become ...

    September 8, 2013 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  21. Sam

    Unfortunately for McCain, he has no ability to impeach anyone.

    "The House of Representatives shall chuse their Speaker and other Officers; and shall have the sole Power of Impeachment."

    September 8, 2013 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  22. PtBarnumBoy

    John, oh John, the men in the white coats are here for you.

    September 8, 2013 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  23. Elliott Carlin

    It's telling he doesn't think Obama should be impeached for actually trashing the Constitution-he should be impeached over a military strategy. Clowns like McCain, Pelosi and the lot lost their minds years ago.

    September 8, 2013 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  24. Old But Not Stupid

    McCain is losing it. He will never get over losing to President Obama in 2008. McCain should be working on Native American issues that is what he is chairman of now. Yet he goes to country after country as if he is our President or Secretary of State. I know Cindy does not want him home so maybe he can find a nice retirement home in Arizona. McCain needs to retire he is no longer serving the people but himself.

    September 8, 2013 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  25. Mike M.

    Mr. McCain needs to be quite and do his job for the state of Arizona. We have great problems here in this country and It's going to take all sides to solve them. Republicans don't seem Interested.

    September 8, 2013 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
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