September 7th, 2013
06:52 PM ET
9 years ago

McCain raises impeachment - if boots hit ground in Syria

WASHINGTON (CNN) - After endorsing President Barack Obama's plan to launch military strikes against Syria, Sen. John McCain warned the president would face impeachment if he were to put "boots on the ground."

McCain told Phoenix radio host Mike Broomhead on Thursday that the president had "bungled" the entire handling of the Syria crisis and would open himself up to impeachment hearings if he overstepped the limits of the authorization before Congress.

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"No one wants American boots on the ground," McCain told the KYFI audience. "Nor will there be American boots on the ground, because there would be an impeachment of the president if they did that."

While McCain said he still supports the current plan to intervene in Syria, the Arizona Republican's statement seems to reflect his contentious Thursday town hall meeting with some Phoenix constituents. At the meeting, McCain, who has favored a more robust American response to the Syria crisis, faced intense criticism.

"We didn't send you to make war for us. We sent you to stop the war," one man said.

Despite his warning to the president, McCain spoke out in favor of the Syria authorization again Saturday, endorsing former Army Gen. David Petraeus' endorsement of the administration's plan in a tweet.

Only one of three Republicans in the Senate Foreign Relations panel to approve the measure, McCain has vocally advocated for a stepped-up American response to alleged use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government. He even refused to pass the White House resolution out of committee until it included provisions to bolster Syrian opposition forces deemed moderate.

McCain's support for action hasn't stopped the Arizonan from blasting his former 2008 presidential rival for inaction.

In an interview on CNN's "The Situation Room" on Tuesday, McCain told Wolf Blitzer the president needed to "explain to the American people" why urgent action in Syria is necessary. The Republican senator also said President Obama made a mistake by consulting Congress instead of immediately launching a bombing campaign against the Syrian government.

"It's common sense you don't warn them and give them plenty of time to disperse," McCain said.

Filed under: John McCain • President Obama • Syria • Uncategorized
soundoff (1,005 Responses)
  1. nobikiniatoll

    wonja blohwme: "He's completely out of touch with the people of Arizona." Which is, after all, a clown-show passing for a state.

    September 8, 2013 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  2. Jose

    McCain is not only a joke but an individual who lacks of loyalty and integraty. In one hand he supports the president and the other hand he will betray the president if he needs to.

    September 8, 2013 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  3. Glenn

    Whenever McCain speaks I always picture him from the Palin movie as a total idiot. I think the reason he didn't bother me 15 years ago was because he had a totally different set of views. He changed his views and stances to run for president.

    He is one contradiction after another. His idea to arm the rebels was idiotic. His guarantee that the rebels were all moderate and trustworthy was foolish. We would be fighting three wars around the world if it were up to McCain. The fact that he is on every Sunday talk show is a sign that everyone thinks something funny is going to come out of his mouth.

    September 8, 2013 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  4. Namejust me

    The only thing he got right was impeachment.

    September 8, 2013 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  5. Andrewmag166

    Where do they get these people?

    September 8, 2013 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  6. Gary Cooper

    sounds like Romney

    September 8, 2013 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  7. Minka

    This man was caught playing poker on his i-phone during a briefing on Syria. His response, "The worst part besides getting caught, was that I lost thousands in that game." This guy is a flip-flopping buffoon. There is no way to take anything he says seriously. I cannot believe we are paying him a salary out of our tax dollars.

    September 8, 2013 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  8. Stang05

    Must be strange for liberals to have to voice support for their president who is the LEADER of the move to arm combatents and take hands on military action. Sometimes the real world idoes't conform to ones convictions

    September 8, 2013 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  9. martin-d28

    Keep up the pressure people. We actually have these clowns scared enough to possibly stand up to AIPAC and the Saudis. American life's are not for sales to the Saudi's Israel or anyone else.

    September 8, 2013 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  10. California Grandma

    Our illustrious ex-presidential candidate, doing what he does best – talking out of both sides of his a$$, er...mouth. It's really hard for me to understand why this wrinkled old man is still relevant.

    September 8, 2013 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  11. Conservatives Suck!

    McCain got raked over the coals back home over war with Syria. That senile old man is insane. But he's right. Obama is nearing that Impeachment Red Line. American people need to put a Red Line for Obama.

    September 8, 2013 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  12. rs

    Impeach – Now
    Please. Soon.
    Would a fact-based reality for such action be too much to ask for? You cannot impeach a president just because you don't like him.

    September 8, 2013 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  13. dion

    The Prez and vice prez...dumb and dumber....

    September 8, 2013 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  14. EdL

    How about sneakers and sandals?

    September 8, 2013 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  15. Randy

    McCain and alot of his other buddy's need to go they hang on sucking the Americans peoples money, they all been in there to long time for a change.

    September 8, 2013 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  16. YUCK

    To avoid a War why don't they prosecute the Assad president for war crimes?

    September 8, 2013 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  17. john lemandri

    McCain has gone from a national hero to a war monger.

    September 8, 2013 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  18. LR

    McCain is the poster boy for term limits.

    September 8, 2013 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  19. Johnjon

    I'm so glad McCain is supportive of our president.............. it makes me all happy inside

    September 8, 2013 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  20. J R Brown

    The simple fact is that the rebels in Syria have large groups of the same people we just spent 10+ years fighting AGAINST; we should not be helping them and we absolutely should not be arming them.

    While I believe that the use of chemical weapons against one's own people is, in itself, justification for intervention...there are other issues at play and those issues should absolutely not be glossed over.

    We removed Saddam Hussein only to discover that he was the only thing keeping Iraq from descending into all out sectarian slaughter....we're about the make that same mistake all over again in Syria.

    September 8, 2013 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  21. Quest

    While I agree that nobody wants to put boots on the ground, and I would go further, nobody wants to do anything in Syria. However, the impeachment idea is white trash racist nonsense. Why would any of Obama's supporters accept the Republican's threats are worthy or legitimate? I am white. I would support Al-Queida over a Republican government takeover.

    September 8, 2013 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  22. lex

    The real issue is whether Obama has credibility and competence. The truthful answer is "no" for each. Scary. And this is the same guy who is implementing Obamacare.

    September 8, 2013 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  23. ldean50

    What a hypocrite and McCain is full of double-speak. He's playin for the Tea-Baggers. He's been screaming to go into Syria for two years and now he publicly threatens the Commander-in-Chief. This is the kind of threat that needs to take place behind closed doors if he really means it, which he doesn't. Why didn't we impeach Bush when we found out he lied about WMD? Which is worse? My dad, a Republican and veteran of WWII and Korean is appalled at the continued slams by Republicans who do not publicly support their President on the eve of strike against Syria. The lack of partisanship, lack of respect for the office of president, and the Republicans wanting to have their cake and eat it too, merely advertises to the world that we have no strength. One group of losers makes us all look like losers.

    September 8, 2013 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  24. I'mvotingforHillary

    Where was this impeachment talk when Bush blundered into the Iraq war?

    September 8, 2013 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  25. LoboLoco

    Ol macadoo wants to impeach the President, on what grounds? Is he just losing it or do you think the ol guy is playing politics of the worst sort. America we have a honest to god national interest here and we want to put our heads in the sand. Are you losing it to, just like the majority of the republican controlled house who bowls went loose? rand paul, ol carl rove and varous other where on faux news this morning. carl rove, my god, who let that pos out.

    September 8, 2013 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
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