April 8th, 2008
03:10 PM ET
14 years ago

Levin: Iraq hearings mostly avoided politics

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/04/08/art.levin.gi.jpg caption="Levin says presidential politics were ‘kept to a minimum’ Tuesday, despite the presence of the major candidates. "] WASHINGTON (CNN) - Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin says he accomplished what many would consider a tall task: Keeping presidential politics to a minimum during today’s hearings on the Iraq War.

General David Petraeus, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, and Ryan Crocker, the U.S. ambassador to Iraq were the crucial witnesses in today’s hearing. But with the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, Senator John McCain of Arizona, and one of the two remaining Democratic presidential candidates, Senator Hillary Clinton of New York in attendance, it was hard to avoid the specter of the campaign trail.

Levin, commenting on the hearings after they concluded, said “the tone of it was right and I saw a minimum amount of presidential politics. I know that there is an understandable focus because Senators Clinton and McCain were there. But I thought that people went really to the substance and avoided politicizing this hearing in any way and I hope that’s the way it appeared to the public because that’s clearly what we intended.”

Petraeus and Crocker are now testifying in front of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, home of another of the White House hopefuls, Senator Barack Obama of Illinois.

Related: Watch Jamie McIyntre's fact check on the hearing

soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. Lynne Kieper

    Please post my comment. Any time I post something that is less than favorable toward Sen Obama, you do not post it. Obama used the committee hearing today to blatantly re-state his campaign talking points, yet you imply that Sen Clinton politicized her questioning. Not fair. It would be nice to see fair and equal reporting of both candidates.

    April 8, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  2. Grif

    If the US pull out of Iraq, Turkey will consume the City of Mosul, within days. Jordan will try to secure their boarders.
    Do a circuit .. Iraq will disappear..

    April 8, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  3. Marie-Lynn


    April 8, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  4. Tim from Ohio

    Nobama is weak and will not get elected, my friends. Hillary was the winner today in the hearings. Nobama is done, period!!!

    April 8, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  5. richard

    Did you see Obama and how uncomfortable he looked without his teleprompter? He looked discheveled.

    April 8, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
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