June 30th, 2008
10:24 AM ET
15 years ago

McCain campaign: Clark's comments 'sad'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/06/30/clark.mccain/art.clark.gi.jpg caption=" Retired Gen. Wesley Clark, who ran for president in 2004, has questioned Sen. John McCain's qualifications."](CNN) - Sen. John McCain's campaign on Monday called retired Gen. Wesley Clark's remarks that McCain lacks command experience "the lowest form of politics."

Clark, a military adviser for Sen. Barack Obama, questioned Sunday whether McCain's military experience qualified him to be commander in chief.

The McCain campaign has called on Obama to condemn the comments.

"I think it's kind of sad," McCain campaign manager Rick Davis said Monday on CNN's "American Morning."

Full story

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (204 Responses)
  1. Yawdie

    Sad but true!

    June 30, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  2. Crush Rush

    McCain,from Hero to Coward in 8 years.He didnt have the guts to stand up to Bushs and Roves lies in 2000.

    June 30, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  3. john

    Wesley Clark is a 4 star general. I tend to respect whatever he says about cases as this.

    June 30, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  4. Stephanie

    This is not good. We need to keep talking about the economy. John wants to talk about war and the millitary. Why would you give John what he wants?

    Obama 08

    June 30, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  5. Frank

    Retired General Wesley Clark is now a self serving political hack. No respect for a fellow serviceman.....you now know he sold his soul to the Democrat party. It is sad. Go John McCain!

    June 30, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  6. JD

    I'm confused. If Obama criticizes the war hero, he is unqualified to do so. If a decorated general criticizes the war hero, Obama is unqualified to do so? Is McCain a respected soldier or the pope?

    June 30, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  7. dmw

    Obama is just a typical politician. Obama has NO experience at all and yet he has the nerve to send out one of his cronies to complain about John McCain. Priceless!

    June 30, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  8. Jeremy in Boston

    Gen. Clark is right and no amount of fake indignation is going to change that.

    June 30, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  9. Michael

    Wesley Clark has always been a joke, and always will be. How often has his personal bravery, not his bureaucratic skiils been tested? No, being a prisoner of war for five years (when McCain could have gone home four years earllier but did not because of loyalty to his comrades) does not automatically qualify one to be President, but I'll take it any time next to an cowardly term in the Illinois Senate.

    June 30, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  10. Xavier---Virginia

    Did McCain come out and defend Kerry when the GOP, lead by Rove, attacked Kerry's war record? No. Then he needs to stop sniveling. If he's going to run on nothing but the fact that he was a POW he needs to deal with people questioning whether or not that is really enough. (Hint: it's not.)

    McCain's just being a big baby.

    June 30, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  11. A Latte Lover, Seattle, WA

    Why should Obama have to condemn Wesley Clark's comments??? While I don't think people should attack McCain on his military experience, (and I don't think Clark was doing that) it is fair game to question whether or not being a POW does make McCain qualified to be CIC.

    Is there some kind of alarm warning for all of you PUMA idiots to come out at the same time??? I notice on all of these blogs, that your posts come one right after another...How original. Funny how you all call Clark a loser. He has much more military experience than McCain.

    June 30, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  12. Republican for OBAMA!

    McCain was captured in action and was a pow. That doesn’t tell very well for his capability in conducting military affairs.

    Whats REALLY scary is cheney/bush escalating military action toward Iran in attempts to start a war just before the election. We also have this squirrel Lieberman pumping up the fear dial as well to sway support towards mccain. What these right wing nut jobs are doing is outright criminal!

    June 30, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  13. sarah

    clark's comment are not sad, they are disgraceful. as a democrat i am ashamed that my party is allowing the empty suit the appointed as our candidate to send his minions to question the qualifications and military service of a true american hero. i am appalled that clark and obama did this. gen. clark may think being a community organizer and a half term u.s. senator makes obama a better qualified candidate but most of us do not agree. mccain is a hero, obama is a zero. call me an ex-democrat now.

    June 30, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  14. Hussein

    Mc Cain the truth hurts ... Military/Foreign Experience it's not your strong suit now ........... now you have nothing to run on ... LOL

    June 30, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |

    No what is sad is the fact that Joe LieBerman is blasting fear mongering tactics on behalf of McWar.

    Joe Lieberman(independent refugee of Israel)

    June 30, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  16. Nina De Ponca

    Four-(4)-Star Army General Wesley Clark got the FACTS exactly right.

    McCain has no military experience that is particularly relevant to being president.

    John McCain went into the Navy because he came from a family where that was a tradition. Both his grandfather and his father did it.. Imagine the family pressure that influenced him. As a 22 year old in 1959, when General Dwight Eisenhower was then President and John Kennedy, with “war-hero” credentials was running for, and would go on to win the Presidency in 1960, image the peer pressure McCain was under to join. I’m not so sure John should score enormous nobility points under these circumstances. Only he and others of his era honestly know the motivations.

    It is reasonable to say that McCain’s 40- year old POW experience serves as an inspiration to other SOLDIERS. However, no thinking American believes that John McCain would be a better President than Obama because he was held in Vietnam

    By contrast, Obama came of officer age in the 1980’s, a time when we had recently (6 years earlier) extracated the country from the failure of the Vietnam war, and a time when the registration for the draft (just 2/3 years earlier) had been suspended.

    Independent voters, let’s not inflate John McCain’s resume under false pretenses.

    June 30, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  17. kingsley

    Clark shouldn't apologize for any facts. If Joe Liberman can come out and state the facts behind terrorrist attack in 2009 then Clark will step up. And besides has McSame realy been tgested? someone please answer. He claims he has been working hard to prevent an attack but then his surrogates pridicts one

    June 30, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  18. California Gold

    McCain got it right: he (McCain) really is sad. Sad and pathetic.

    He claims he won't wage a negative campaign. When asked about group efforts to promote negativity and slurs, McCain won't denounce Swift Boat efforts. He wants it both ways, as long as it's to his benefit. This speaks to his flawed character and values. It takes a great man (or woman) to speak out against these tactics. John McCain is not a great man. He is, indeed, sad.

    June 30, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  19. NickNas

    ROFLMAO!!!! The TRUTH being called the LOWEST of POLITICS!!!!

    Then they Scream non-stop ELECT ME OR DIE IN A TERRORIST ATTACK!!!

    Am I the Only one who sees this???? Why is this entire country Democrat AND Republican not up in arms over these tactics is beyond comprehension.

    June 30, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  20. johnr

    Well consider the source – Clark is trying to be relelvent – he has his own agenda as a liberal left kook which means the "good of America" is not a priority.
    To compare McCains experience with Obama's is a joke – what has Obama honestly done? Nothing except talk. Even his promises are falling apart now.
    McCain is a true patriot – he has proven himself with his service and with 30 years in Congress – What ha Obama done except promise everyone everything on the campaign trail? Of course we have seen enough backpeddling from this guy already to qualify him for a used car salesman. Obama, with his silver tongue, should be running sales seminars for food processors, not running for president.

    June 30, 2008 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  21. Larry~

    Clark DID NOT degrade McSame's service...he praised it.

    He just said that being a fighter pilot and being shot down does not make him qualified to be CoC just as it would be the same for Obama.

    June 30, 2008 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  22. Diing in Washington

    I absolutely agree with S. Shay. Well said my friend.

    June 30, 2008 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  23. McCrazy

    Not as sad as the GOP/LiebermanOP comments. This is the second time in a week Republicans talk about terror attacks. All that would show is that McCain, Bush and the rest of the GOP have done nothing to make us safer and why give them 4-8 more years.

    June 30, 2008 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  24. Rashawn the leftist like President Obama

    Why should Obama come out and condemn these comments.? If thats the case, Johnny boy should come out and condemn his own comments about Barack Obama. Calling someone naive, not trust worthy, etc. is in my mind the same as saying what Clark sad. Personally, I have asked those same questions to other Republicans locally and no one could answer. I'm just glad someone can say it on the air because I do not see why him being a pilot and a prisoner of war makes him so "qualified" to be president. In all honesty, if he were to be president, unless he follows Bush, he's going to get major advice from his advisor's. The same advice President Obama is going to get!

    John McCain is ridiculous

    OBAMA '08

    June 30, 2008 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  25. David

    Not very smart. Clark said McCain does not have enough command experience to be President. McCain was an officer in the Navy and Obama is a political hack who lacks any leadership experience. Does the Obama camp really want this discussion?

    June 30, 2008 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
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