August 18th, 2008
12:15 PM ET
14 years ago

Obama, McCain react to Musharraf

(CNN) - Both Barack Obama and John McCain have released statements reacting to the resignation of Pakistan's President Pervez Musharraf:

Read the statements after the jump

Obama:
"President Musharraf has made the right decision to step down as President of Pakistan. It is in the interests of his country and the Pakistani people to end the political crisis that has immobilized the coalition government for too long. I have long said that the central terrorist threat to the United States lies in northwest Pakistan and Afghanistan, and not Iraq. US policy must focus on assuring that all elements of Pakistan's government are resolute in shutting down the safe havens for al Qaeda and the Taliban. There can be no safe haven for terrorists who threaten the American people.

"A year ago, I advocated that the US move from a 'Musharraf policy' to a 'Pakistan policy.' I hope all of Pakistan's friends will now seize the opportunity created by Musharraf's exit to focus on the urgent issues of today: confronting the threat of extremist violence, dealing with food and energy shortages, and helping the Pakistani people build a stable, secure, democratic future."

McCain:
"The resignation of President Pervez Musharraf is a step toward moving Pakistan onto a more stable political footing. Pakistan is a critical theater in countering the threat of al Qaeda and violent Islamic extremism, and I look forward to the government increasing its future cooperation.

"There are serious problems that must be addressed. The situation in Pakistan's frontier regions requires immediate and continued attention, and I hope that the elections for President Musharraf's successor will serve to reconcile the Pakistani people behind a leader who can solidify their government internally. It is critical that the United States continue to work in partnership with the Pakistani people and their democratically elected government to tackle the many challenges we both face."

soundoff (73 Responses)
  1. Anonymous

    It makes me want to vote for McCain just to put him in his place. Who does he think he is?

    Let me guess: Texas?

    August 18, 2008 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  2. Walter

    With buddies like McCain, Musharraf didn't need any enemies.

    It's amazing how fast these straight-talking, maverick, right-wingers can turn on someone when it suits them.

    McCain is a weather vane, blowing which ever way the wind is headed. If the Democrats hadn't nominated the weakest of their major candidates, we'd be planning McCain's funeral right now.

    August 18, 2008 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  3. Terrence (Winston Salem, NC)

    JUDGEMENT!!!!

    Obama 08

    August 18, 2008 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  4. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    Before John McCain states that he'll lead a day and night manhunt for Osama, let him tell us when his wife, Cindy, will release her tax statements and how he qualified to get into flight school ahead of many dozens of better qualified candidates.

    We're waiting, McBush!!!

    August 18, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  5. Anonymous

    "Mr. McCain, speaking in New Hampshire, also sought to convey leader-to-leader chemistry when he called Mr. Musharraf a “personally scrupulously honest” man who deserved “the benefit of the doubt” on uniting Pakistan." Dec. 29, 2007, campaining in NH

    August 18, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  6. Listen Up...

    Remember way back when HRC and McCain were clowning Obama for his comments about Pakistan. WELL, guess who was on the money! Face it Obama haters, he does a country good.

    August 18, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  7. KC

    Gee they both said the same thing.

    August 18, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  8. Debby

    I have to laugh Obama keeps saying oh I have long said. WHEN???? I watch his stumps and all his debates with Hillary and never heard him say this. I have heard him say the war in Iraq was wrong a bunch of times, then flip and say oh the surge is working.

    August 18, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  9. Tennisguypitt

    Obama's excellent judgment strikes again!!!

    Obama '08

    August 18, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  10. Danel

    If mcCain utter any words without "my friends or surge" more than likely they take it out from wikipedia. Why can't they hire a speech writer?

    August 18, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  11. Clare

    Obummer included himself-its all about me me me obummer! LOL How weak and BORING
    I like McCains response-Way to go !

    August 18, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  12. Greg Pottstown, Pa.

    What do all you dems think about Obama now saying that his income tax plan will not go into affect for another ten years. lot of good that will do for us. What happened to we need change now. Anyone notice that every time McCain takes him to the mat he roles over and changes his plans.

    August 18, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  13. Mike, TX

    Obama is such a liar. He suggested nothing of the sort. A year ago his ONLY foreign policy platform was his opposition to Iraq. Come to think of it, that is still his only foreign policy platform.

    Howard Dean, think about revising the primary process before you present another flyweight dead-head as the nominee. You've done your country a great disservice.

    August 18, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  14. VB Lincoln Park NJ

    There is no doubt that Senator McBush had some questionsd in advance of them being asked.

    We should also remember that he opposed the improved GI Bill, while Senator Obama voted in favor.

    My only question about that is WHY??

    August 18, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  15. Jean

    Why use "The Obama Nation" as a voter's guide??????

    This election is too important to take a narrow approach to decision making.

    The American public is more informed thinkers than that.

    August 18, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  16. lil

    What did mccain say?
    bomb,bomb,bomb

    August 18, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  17. PG

    Its amazing how many of these Obama haters are so uninformed. Are these really Americans willing to vote for Panamanian McCain????

    August 18, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  18. Sylvia

    Obama was right all along. REpubs do not get it and use bad juddgement each time. I'll take judgement over experience any day. You can't teach an old dog new tricks, I guess. McCain is a good example of that.

    August 18, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  19. Steve - Wyoming

    Typical US middle-east policy. We cozy up to a dictator and then act surprised when he turns out to be scum. My enemy's enemy is NOT always my friend.

    August 18, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  20. tim

    writing in hillary....for obvious reasons.

    August 18, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  21. wulli

    I find it amazing that the PRESS really wants to keep quiet about the fact that both Rick Warren and McBush lied when that said the he was in the cone of silence. Clearly he knew the questions, he was so eager to answer that sometimes Rick Warren could not even finish the question. Sad to have somebody like that run for president.

    August 18, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  22. Election Watcher

    What's with this Obama VP business? Can't he decide, or is he just stringing everyone along to think their favorite candidate will be his pick? Either way I think it's a lot of nonsense and doesn't speak well to his leadership abilities.

    August 18, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  23. Obamalism

    You people act as if Bush and the GOP enjoyed working with Musharraf. They didn't get to choose who was leading Pakistan. You work with what you've got. Same with Russia. It's similar to that thing that obama keeps preaching about. It's called...........wait for it............................diplomacy.

    August 18, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  24. Tennessee

    Does Obama even know who the guy is?

    August 18, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  25. Foreign Observer

    Good to see that the bloggers are holding CNN's feet to the fire on the McCain/Warren corruption. Note that the McCain staff has only said "he didn't hear the questions," NOT "nobody called him on his cellphone and told him all about them." The evasions have a clear ring of how-can-I-lie-without-technically-lying.

    August 18, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
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