McCain calls Kerry 'a human wrecking ball' on Iran negotiations
November 14th, 2013
11:29 AM ET
12 months ago

McCain calls Kerry 'a human wrecking ball' on Iran negotiations

Washington (CNN) – Senator John McCain said Thursday he is "very disappointed" with the Obama Administration – and especially Secretary of State John Kerry – on the issue of nuclear negotiations with Iran.

Kerry is "a good friend of mine," McCain said. But when it comes to Iran, "this guy has been a human wrecking ball."

The Arizona Republican and 2008 GOP presidential nominee made his remarks at Aspen Institute’s fifth annual Washington Ideas Forum in Washington, held jointly with The Atlantic.

McCain, long known as a foreign policy hawk, called for additional sanctions against Tehran in order to force a more favorable deal that includes a complete halt to the regime’s nuclear program.

The White House opposes additional sanctions for the moment, and has expressed a concern that doing so would drive Iran away from the negotiating table.

"I have never been more worried about the parameters of this deal," McCain said of the negotiations.

I was “told yesterday that Secretary Kerry refused to give any details of the negotiations. … And yet at the same time (he) wants to rely on our good will."

McCain noted that there’s little chance of passing new sanctions through the Democratic-controlled Senate.

Multi-state negotiations with Iran stalled temporarily over the weekend, although both sides have publicly said they remain optimistic. Negotiations will resume in Geneva November 20.

McCain has frequently taken a hard line stance on foreign policy issues. Among other things, he has called for stronger U.S. support of Syrian rebels and has called the removal of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi a coup.

The Obama administration has avoided the coup label in order to continue sending foreign aid to Egypt.


Filed under: Iran • John Kerry • John McCain
soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    What's remarkable about this...and CNN is of course ignoring...is what a wonderful window Jabberwocky Barbie's comments provided into the irrational melding of political ideology and religion that has taken place in conservatives' minds. That she would find something the Pope said off-putting because she identified it as "liberal," even though it was correct and completely in line with Christian/Catholic teachings, is a pretty astounding reveal.

    Note to conservatives: you don't own Christianity and Christianity truly has nothing to do with the political spectrum. The founding fathers recognized the absolute danger when, in the minds of the masses, the two things become so inter-related and comingled that people are incapable of distinguishing between the two....they then founded a country which has as one of its fundamental, core founding principles that the two should always be kept carefully separated. They found it so important that they stuck that concept in the very first amendment to that country's incorporation papers.

    November 14, 2013 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  2. Thomas

    The man who brought us Sarah Palin !

    We dodged disaster on that brilliant game changer .

    November 14, 2013 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  3. The Real Tom Paine

    " Bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran."

    So how is it that Kerry is a wrecking ball, with comments like this on the record? We have an opening with Iran for the first time in a generation, so naturally the senior Senator from the state of ADHD has blurted out another gem to reassure us we made the right decision in rejecting him 5 years ago.

    November 14, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  4. A True Conservative

    Wow – a liberal who has actually read part of the Constitution! Now – if only you could figure out how to post your comments under the correct article....I believe you were talking about former Governor Palin.....Really Sniffy, try to keep up......

    November 14, 2013 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  5. A True Conservative

    What is it with you lefty's and Governor Palin? I mean really? I know she is FAR more attractive than any liberal female politician....but c'mon.......let go of your fantasies and start actually thinking and discussing the issues at hand......this article happens to be about John Kerry and how he is failing as Secretary of State – not that that should surprise anyone.......

    November 14, 2013 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  6. Rudy NYC

    Note to conservatives: you don't own Christianity and Christianity truly has nothing to do with the political spectrum. The founding fathers recognized the absolute danger when, in the minds of the masses, the two things become so inter-related and comingled that people are incapable of distinguishing between the two....they then founded a country which has as one of its fundamental, core founding principles that the two should always be kept carefully separated. They found it so important that they stuck that concept in the very first amendment to that country's incorporation papers.
    --------------------
    Further note to conservatives. Your political and religious zeal have become so intertwined that you are incapable of the compromises, which make our democracy work. Compromise has become a sin to conservative purists. The founders foresaw the effect of religion on a democracy, which is why the 1st Amendment is written the way it is. The 1st defines freedom of religion for individuals, and freedom from religion for the government. Got it?

    November 14, 2013 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  7. smith

    Coming from the guy who was so big on arming the rebels(AQ) in Syria I would say he is more like a wrecking ball. However, Kerry is pretty sad, the guy was just on news talking conspiracy theories.

    November 14, 2013 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  8. Rick McDaniel

    McCain is a hawk..........but when dealing with Iran, you have to negotiate tough, to get anything at all.

    November 14, 2013 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  9. ak_steve

    Didn't McCain want to be a Beach Boy, "Bomb, bomb, bomb... bomb, bomb Iran." I don't think that is a good negotiation tactic either.

    November 14, 2013 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  10. haddock

    Hard to take McCain seriously, given that his solution to every problem is to invade immediately. If we had followed his advice, we would be entrenched in new wars in Syria, Egypt, and Iran by now. Glad he has not been given the keys to the national gun locker.

    November 14, 2013 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  11. Bill from GA

    " Bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran." may turn out to be a necessity.

    If the heavy-water reactor near the city of Arak is allowed to be fueled, then it is considered to be to dangerous to bomb. It may be: Do it now or allow Iran to become a nuclear power. We should make NO concessions until Iran agrees to dismantle this plant.

    I'm sure our President is aware of this issue, and I don't envy him the decision he must make.

    The French got this one right: don't trust Iran.

    November 14, 2013 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  12. Lisa P.

    About time the ridiculous wall we've built around Iran was wrecked! It hasn't done us any good and it's hobbled the only people who can do anything about the obstinate, backwards Iranian regime - liberal, secular Iranians. If blowing up the sanctions breaks the stalemate and gets the Iranian government back on the road to nuclear compliance by allowing effective monitoring then I say hand Kerry some TNT, and more power to him!

    November 14, 2013 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  13. Thomas

    @A True Conservative

    So what your saying is you are a misogynistic male who judges women on there looks and not there intelligence .

    Wasn't that the only reason McCain picked her a his VP ?

    I'm sure you will buy here new book , it has pictures !

    November 14, 2013 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  14. Pam from Iowa

    The only wrecking ball I have seen in the last 6 years is the GOP coming in and trying to wreck our country!

    November 14, 2013 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  15. Bill from GA

    My above comment should have read: "considered to be too dangerous"

    And, further, I blame Bush (Surprise!!) for the mess in Iran. If he had not destroyed the balance of power in the region by invading Iraq and destroying their government, we wouldn't be facing an empowered Iran today. Thanks, W! The world owes you one. Again.

    November 14, 2013 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  16. Warren

    A big Thank you to Rudy NYC.That seems to be the one thing that conservatives conveniently forget about. Freedom from religion for the government....

    November 14, 2013 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  17. just saying

    let face the facts. obama is willing to do anything at this point to change the subject, including selling this country and israel right down the river. it is all about making obama look good at any cost.

    November 14, 2013 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  18. Sniffit

    "doing so would drive Iran away from the negotiating table. "

    Duh. That's why McCain wants more sanctions.

    November 14, 2013 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  19. Data Driven

    Human wrecking ball? Coming from McCain?

    The hypocrisy - it's like performance art.

    November 14, 2013 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  20. Palin wrecking ball

    ohh McCain. Your human wrecking ball is Sarah Palin. She wrecks the english language constantly.

    November 14, 2013 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  21. jinx9to88

    Funny how GOP are critics of Dem foreign policy, the only foreign policy the GOP has is to go to war. Then lie to American people on why we went to war.

    November 14, 2013 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  22. Data Driven

    @A True Conservative,

    "What is it with you lefty's and Governor Palin? I mean really? I know she is FAR more attractive than any liberal female politician"

    Not anymore. She "hit the wall" we all must face as we push 50. Life sucks and then you die, I guess.

    November 14, 2013 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |