Politicians react to Petraeus resignation
November 9th, 2012
04:23 PM ET
9 years ago

Politicians react to Petraeus resignation

(CNN) -
Lawmakers and high-profile figures in Washington were quick to respond Friday to the news that General David Petraeus was stepping down from his post as CIA director.

President Barack Obama:

David Petraeus has provided extraordinary service to the United States for decades. By any measure, he was one of the outstanding General officers of his generation, helping our military adapt to new challenges, and leading our men and women in uniform through a remarkable period of service in Iraq and Afghanistan, where he helped our nation put those wars on a path to a responsible end. As Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, he has continued to serve with characteristic intellectual rigor, dedication, and patriotism. By any measure, through his lifetime of service David Petraeus has made our country safer and stronger.

Sen. John McCain of Arizona:

"General David Petraeus will stand in the ranks of America's greatest military heroes. His inspirational leadership and his genius were directly responsible – after years of failure – for the success of the surge in Iraq. General Petraeus has devoted his life to serving the country he loves, and America is so much the better for it. We are immensely grateful for General Petraeus's decades of work on behalf of our nation, our military, and our security. Our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family."

Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California:

"At CIA, Director Petraeus gave the agency leadership, stature, prestige and credibility both at home and abroad. On a personal level, I found his command of intelligence issues second to none. He was especially cooperative with Congress as we executed our oversight responsibility, and he was responsible for improving American relationships with intelligence agencies in countries around the world.

"I wish President Obama had not accepted this resignation, but I understand and respect the decision. David Petraeus is one of America's best and brightest, and all Americans should be grateful for his service. Deputy Director Michael Morell will serve as acting director, so I am confident the agency is in very good hands until the president selects a replacement."

Republican Rep. Peter King of New York, Chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security:

"General Petraeus is one of America's most outstanding and distinguished military leaders and a true American patriot.

"As a member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, I had the privilege of working with General Petraeus in his capacity as CIA Director.

"I hold General Petraeus in the highest regard, regret his resignation, and wish him and his family the very best."

Filed under: David Petraeus
soundoff (63 Responses)
  1. wbrown

    Oh grow up, people. As long as all he transferred were sperm and not State Secrets, what business is it of ours? Half of our heroes had affairs (and probably half of the others as well – they just didn't get caught). As long as the affairs don't compromise the individual's ability to perform their service to the country, they're private, not public matters.

    November 9, 2012 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  2. Jill

    They just set him up because they don't want him to testify because he would tell the truth. It wouldn't take a rocket scientist to see that Obama set him up to not testify. Either he lies about what happened or they would tell his wife about the affair. Bingo really hard to figure that one out.

    November 9, 2012 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  3. Anonymous

    Benjamin Franklin, Jefferson, Martin Luther King, JFK, Clinton.....and why is this important??? Who cares?? It is the wife who has to decide..but it has nothing to do with their jobs...Imagine if the above people had not continued doing their jobs??Do not like it..but it is not my business and not my judgement call..." He who is without sin?"

    November 9, 2012 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  4. VaVoter

    He's quitting because he had an affair ? Seems kind of unlikely to me – that's the most random excuse I've seen in years. He's not running for office, the election is over, so it can't be that... Unless, like most of the military leadership, he was really looking forward to President Romney next year, and now it's just the same old Obama for what would be left of his public-service career anyway. Obama is FAR more likely to rein in the excessive spending on our bloated military and "intelligence community" than Romney would have been. And what fun is that if you're the CIA director ?

    November 9, 2012 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  5. earlbowden

    I wonder if we used that standard (cheating on spouse) in the House and in Congress how many shiithead politicians we could get rid of?

    November 9, 2012 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  6. Sarah

    It is about Benghazi.

    November 9, 2012 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  7. the consultant

    i don't believe in coincidences...this resignation was a cover for the real reason ...he screwed up on the bengazi
    consulate defense and rather then admitting that he made a professional error which would reflect poorly on
    his military career he bit the bullet by admitting an affair..which normally would not be a disqualifier for director
    of the CIA....so we have yet to learn the real motivation for Petreus leaving but you can rest assured no secret
    can be kept in DC

    November 9, 2012 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  8. cedar rapids

    'It's difficult to work at a job where your job is to say to Obama, yes sir, of course sir, anything you want sir. Besides rats don't like to be forced to swim so it's better to jump while the ship is still near the shore and floating.'

    so rather than just quitting and citing difference of opinon instead he chooses to announce he had an affair and resign.
    sure, that makes total sense.

    November 9, 2012 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  9. g

    if only the women in the affair had been told he was married-there would be no affair–right

    November 10, 2012 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  10. yeahisaiditsowhat

    I want to hear comments from Newt and Slick Willie...

    November 10, 2012 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  11. yeahisaiditsowhat

    I want to hear comments about the General's indiscretions from Newt and Slick Willie...

    November 10, 2012 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  12. steven harnack

    I would have thought that the whack jobs would be a little bit subdued after the shellacking that they took but it hasn't slowed them down a bit. The good news is that they are even more irrelevant than they have been for the last 4 years.

    November 10, 2012 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  13. kps77

    This is the tip of the iceberg. This outstanding warrior made a huge moral and sickening mistake in choosing adultery. However, everyone has a skeleton in his or her closet, and the administration decided to use the General's skeleton of adultery to blackmail him into resigning so he would not feel compelled to testify about Benghazi. Typically there is no way a man of his stature would back down from telling the truth under oath UNLESS threatened with the certainty of emails regarding his affair to be turned over to the press. With his family already humiliated and devastated, he would not further torture them by having all these very personal emails made public. The administration knew this and used this as leverage to convince him to resign before the hearings begin.

    I hope Rep. King and others on the committee will force the truth and demand all witnesses to testify. I have a gut feeling that the horrible stench permeating from this cover-up might make Watergate and Clinton's affair pale in comparison. We cannot afford to allow this to fade away. This was a significant failure to protect our country's ambassador and security and the details MUST be fully disclosed!!

    America needs to remember that the common reaction to something is typically as large or larger than the action itself. If this holds true, losing the most important warrior in modern times means the underlying reason must be gigantic. As deplorable as adultery is, this administration would not trade the loss of Petreus's brilliant mind and leadership for the breaking of his marriage vows. The sewage is spreading.

    Finally, I voted for Obama and I am a Democrat, but truth is truth and when it isn't demanded in all totality, we start a downward spiral of secrecy and lies that erodes all the trust and faith we have in our leaders and in ourselves. A festered wound will only heal when the corruption is expunged.

    November 10, 2012 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
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