July 1st, 2008
07:00 PM ET
13 years ago

McCain to Obama: Cut Clark loose

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/01/art.mccainclark.ap.jpg caption="McCain traveled to Colombia Tuesday."](CNN) - Sen. John McCain appeared to raise the stakes in the ongoing back-and-forth over Wesley Clark's controversial comments, saying Tuesday evening that Barack Obama should "cut him loose."

Speaking to reporters on his press plane en route to Colombia, McCain suggested it’s time for the Illinois senator to completely sever ties with the former general and onetime presidential candidate

"I think it's up to Senator Obama now to not only repudiate him but cut him loose."

Clark, a former supporter of Hillary Clinton, does not hold an official role within the Obama campaign.

Clark caused an uproar Sunday after questioning whether McCain's military experience qualified him to be commander-in-chief. Obama has said he disagrees with Clark's comments, calling them "inartful."

But McCain wouldn't say if he thought Obama had sufficiently repudiated the remark.

“That's up to others to decide," he said. "I'm not going to worry about comments that General Clark made. I have plenty of people who will respond to that kind of thing.”


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (480 Responses)
  1. Jay

    I had to read this two times when I saw the ticket headline. Why doesn't McCain cut his ties with Charlie Black, who goes to sleep every night praying a terrorist attack will kill more Americans so McCain can "benefit". McCain is becoming more and more of a fringe candidate every day. You can't question how his POW service has revelance to the presidency (it has no relevance...Wesley Clark was right), but say Americans should die–and you get a quick pat on the back. Is McCain so stupid he can't even connect the dots, or does he think the public is so dumb they can't see how much of a hypocrite he is?

    July 1, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  2. bob in LA

    Mc Cain should respond by saying WHY he has the qualifications. Obama didn't make the comment- Clark did.
    He can't do that however because he isn't qualified. We don't use muscets anymore

    July 1, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  3. J. Warren

    There he goes again, trying to tell Obama what to do. First he tried get him (obama) to pay for town hall meeting trips, then he wanted obama to go to the middle east with him. Get rid of your tried old donkeys and focus on your own surrogates out there lying.

    July 1, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  4. Nick - Arlington, VA

    Pathetic attempt to keep a story going.

    July 1, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  5. tony

    General Clark has no official position with Obama campaign. McCain should dump his chief political advisor, Charlie Black, who said that a terrorist attack on American soil before the election will be a big advantage for McCain, first before he asks Obama to cut his relationship with an unofficial supporter.

    July 1, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  6. marie/michigan

    Senator Obama will never apologize or repudiate anything until the moment it is politically expedient for him to do so. This Clark will likely be thrown under the bus sooner or later by BO–depends on how much mileage he can get out of the comments first.

    July 1, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  7. Old Artillery Man

    Flying an airplane and being shot down does not qualify one to be president any more than being involved in an automobile accident qualifies one as an auto safety engineer.

    July 1, 2008 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  8. nick, houston

    Obama/Clark 08

    McCain knows that Clark is one hell of a vice presidential candidate. Saying that McCain doesn't have experience is not near as bad as McCain saying that Obama's word can not be trusted.

    Watch Dishonest John McLie on you tube:

    Watch him admit that he says things he does not believe in his heart for "ambition."
    Look up "the real McCain" for that video.

    Why not ask McCain about how long he pursued his current wife while he was married with another woman.

    I do not want the "other woman" to become the First Lady. Homewreckers should not be allowed in the white house.

    July 1, 2008 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  9. independent chris

    This is truly absurd. Top generals should be listened to, otherwise it's time to decommission all of them and have a private mercenary armed forces.

    July 1, 2008 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  10. Doobie

    McCain ought to be cut loose!

    July 1, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  11. bo

    ha ha ha even obama said he didn't agree with what clark said. but who cares?

    July 1, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  12. Julie

    Not just no but HELL NO. Clark should stay.

    When Charlie Black and Phil Gramm are "cut loose" , then you can have a valid opinion on such subjects. Til then, your opinion in personnel matters means nothing. Better yet, answer the claim – what exactly is it in your military experience that makes you uniquely qualified – gives you superior judgement to perform the role of president? Quit whining – answer.

    July 1, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  13. Cynthia

    Senator McCain can't run his own campaign and control his own surrogates and has no room to tell Senator Obama what to do about his. John Black is still working for him so he has no room to talk at all.

    July 1, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  14. Serge the DEM

    Just goes to show that Gen. Clark is right on the money with his absolutely truthful remarks about McCain's judgement!

    Now he wants Obama to discredit him. LOL!!!

    That's because Clark is right, and the truth he is uttering on the airwaves is making McCain's camp VERY nervous!

    And McCain should be nervous when a celebrated, intelligent and successful 4-Star general tells it like it is... that McCain's JUDGEMENT is lacking!

    It's gonna be a landslide in November... for the DEMS!!!

    Obama 08!!!!

    July 1, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  15. Didine in Maryland

    Give Senator Obama a break! May be he is not comfortable doing that with everybody. Michelle was the one who iniate the fist bump, and her husband can not turn her down in front of million of people. I don't believe he was rude because he refused to fist bump the boy. He just don't want to start something he is not comfortable with.

    July 1, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  16. wd in calgary

    A. Clarke was quite clear and reasonable – correct, really.

    B. McCain cries so hard I cannot imagine why he is getting such a free ride from the press. He's got "no game", and he and his party are underwater in this election and have no option but to try to appear to have ran. To say McCain is immature and a tad daft, is generous. A most dangerous Presidential candidate.

    July 1, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  17. S. Boatman Warrensburg Mo.

    You Should Sever Ties With More Than Half Your Crooked Camp Mccain! You Are Such A Hypocrit! You And Your Camp Get More Dirty And Smelly By The Day! You Are Not The Boss And Cant Tell Anyone What To Do! You Are The Weakest Candidate On The Stage And Need To Give It A Rest! I Agree With What Clark Said. . . Your War Record Does Not Qualify You To Be President! The Truth Hurts More Than Your Lies!

    July 1, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  18. James

    I know Obama wants to be gracious, but there was no need for him to comment on the Clark "controversy." The good general not only outranked Mccain, but has more experience in the military. Of course his outlook and opinion should count for something! And what did he say that was so wrong? Nothing! Being in the military or POW doesn't automatically make you qualified to be President.

    July 1, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  19. quackhorse

    I think McCain knows that if Obama chooses Clark, he's in more trouble than ever.

    July 1, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  20. PE

    Wow, McCain is really showing his age. Go home Senator and enjoy the rest of your wealthy life...

    July 1, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  21. PaulC

    Now we know what is important to McBush II.
    If being shot down and captured qualified you for President than we would have tens of thousands of Presidents.
    I am outraged that we can spend $162 billion for the war and
    cut healthcare and support for needy Americans.
    Don't you think it is strange that every 1st world country can
    afford universal health care except the U.S.?
    What do we have that Japan, Canada, Australia, Germany, France,
    England, Sweden, Belgium, Switzerland, Norway, Spain don't have?
    Iraq.
    Everyone knew that it was a stupid move but we had to prove
    that we were a superpower. We showed them, didn't we?

    July 1, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  22. ladyatlaw2

    Puleeeze cut him off for what the truth?. Ole fokes should shut up when in the presence of adults Sen mcBush is an ok fella but his capture does not give him the right to be pres. My question is. Why now why did he not run when he was young and may have had an affect. This man is scary

    July 1, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  23. Legal Immigrant

    Oh Please,,, give me a break Mr George McCain! Gen. Clark said the unltimate truth – war hero does not make one ready to be commander in chief, neither does community organizer. Let's talk about the fact that when I first came to United States 12 years ago, I was paying 76cents a gallon for gas!

    July 1, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  24. Bob

    I guess McCain would like Obama to fire any and everyone in his camp who points out something that might take some of the shine off McCain.
    If Obama knuckles under to this, I'll begin to consider him too weak and pandering for the job.

    July 1, 2008 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  25. Evan

    This doesn't even make sense. Clark made a VALID point: that being in the military does not necessarily mean McCain will be a good commander in chief. I am not demonizing soldiers in any way by saying this. I hold the men and women who serve our country in the highest regard, and I pray they come home soon.

    July 1, 2008 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
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