September 7th, 2013
06:52 PM ET
11 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. Boston Guy

    McCain is still hurting because he lost to Obama. Loser GPO'ers just need to go away. It's funny how he looked the other way when Bush lied about WMD to invade Iraq.

    September 8, 2013 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  2. Truth

    Didn't try to impeach Bush for a 10 year war in Iraq!!! Finding no weapons of mass destruction. Where were you then racist!

    September 8, 2013 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  3. SgtFear

    McCain is trying to ride both sides to keep his corporate masters and his constituents happy. He is a disgusting career political hack, and it is disgusting to know that he was elected. Ignore the false right/left paradigm and VOTE THEM OUT!

    September 8, 2013 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  4. Pat

    Remember Hitler.... somebody needs to do something. Stop arguing and stop this mad man in Syria

    September 8, 2013 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  5. Jimmy Kelley

    Ummm... Not sure cnn or McCain understands but, the house of reps, impeach. The senate holds the trial... I am pretty sure McCain is a senator?

    September 8, 2013 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  6. Bill

    Obama failed on all levels, especially with the economy. Printing money can't go on forever, and giving people free stuff does not work either. I am looking forward to the day when he steps down. I am not saying Bush was a better President, but this socialism can't continue. This country can't keep spending money it does not have.

    September 8, 2013 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  7. Lee

    McCain had Sarah Palin.....nuff said.

    September 8, 2013 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  8. Cpl. Marine

    Know your politics history people. Its call "Chemical Weapons Treaty". What people dont realize is after ww1, 145 counties signed the "Geneva Protocol", which prohibits use of chemical weapons during battle. In 1991 they completed the "chemical weapons convention" which states members have 10 yrs to destroy all stock piles of chemical weapons. The "cwc" allows any member country to inspect any site- private or public- it suspect of producing illicit chemicals in another member country. Thats why Obama intervened, that have opened the door to a breach of a world wide peace treaty, that will open the door to other countries to do the same.

    September 8, 2013 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  9. Raleigh

    Where does it end, another foreign war?

    September 8, 2013 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  10. LanceH

    WOW the whole absurdity of this trumped up war is breathtaking. McCain has been beating the war drums the most and even met with the "rebels" in Syria. This all has to do with the fact the People are more and more realizing this war is a fraud and are speaking out. The "rebels" (CIA/Saudi funded jihadist foreign mercenaries) gassed those people, not Asaad.

    September 8, 2013 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  11. J

    I don't get it. Impeached for what?

    September 8, 2013 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  12. Michael

    McCain is the one who should be impeached, it is clear that America does not support this.

    September 8, 2013 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  13. LannyO

    At this point we should be worrying about how we, the people, can stop the government from attacking Syria. Does it really matter what we think at all? Somehow, we need to show them that it does matter what we think. Thank goodness Obama has 'asked' congress for their approval. This is the first chance the people have to make their wishes known and prevent an attack. Trouble is that the administration can attack anyway even if congressional approval is not given. This alone should be grounds for impeachment as, from the rules of the War Powers Act, we have no compelling reason to attack them. Certainly the world has frowned on the use of chemical weapons but it is and should be the job of the UN to address this, not us alone. At some point we must either force the UN to take on issues like this or begin backing off on our support of this non-functioning alliance. We put $4.2 billion dollars a year into this organization without any substantial actions coming from it. So many issues here and interesting to see McCain say this after so much war-mongering in the past.

    September 8, 2013 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  14. t

    ............Just let McCain fly a single bomber over Syria.........that way he gets happy............

    September 8, 2013 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  15. bluesjordan

    No war in Syria/ No strikes in Syria. Deal with American issues at home.

    September 8, 2013 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  16. Log Cabin

    McCain is a crazy old coot.

    September 8, 2013 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  17. comsen

    in a time like this we need unity more than fault finding to politicize a crisis.

    September 8, 2013 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  18. Elleoop

    Unfortunately, the president has done quite enough to tear himself down. He doesn't need any help from the republicans.

    September 8, 2013 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  19. LannyO

    I think "YeahRight" (above comment) also has it right about McCain. I am from Arizona and never know how he is going to come down on any issue, almost a random event on each issue. I used to agree with many of his stands but now find it difficult to agree with any. He needs to go.

    September 8, 2013 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  20. deborah

    Senator McCain, butt out already! YOU are not president! Let the man do his job!

    September 8, 2013 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  21. Guest

    Obama has a mess. He has placed a lot of people in positions for which they are not qualified. This is why we don't have a foreign policy.

    September 8, 2013 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  22. Charlie

    Can you imagine where this country would be if McCain would have been elected president? Thank the Lord that didn't happen!!!

    September 8, 2013 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  23. IAMBeowolf

    Pot, Kettle, Black

    September 8, 2013 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  24. lcleejr

    McCain wants us at war with all middle east countries except Israel. McCain should retire.

    September 8, 2013 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  25. The Other Bob

    Um, exerting his authority as Commander in Chief is NOT an impeachable offense. Not to mention the fact that Obama took boots-on-the-ground off the table quite a while ago. Another Republicant FAIL.

    September 8, 2013 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
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