September 7th, 2013
06:52 PM ET
10 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. sean

    Obama only gets impeached AFTER Bush, Cheney and all companies in involved from profiting from the Iraq and Afghanistan are indicted for war crimes...........

    September 8, 2013 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  2. Brandon

    McCain is SOOOOO retarded. McCain would be all over the president for impeachment if he moved forward with the strike without congress. Now that he's asking congress for approval, and he gets it, who's to say the president wouldn't go to congress again if we DID actually need 'boots on the ground.' He's simply going to congress in the first place because its an largely unpopular war and to get the american people's say on it. Plain and simple.

    September 8, 2013 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  3. muhrvis

    If McCain supports the president's plan to punish Syria, then HE needs to explain why. I thought he had a bigger set of cohones, but he's just riding the fence so he can escape accountability and blame Democrats no matter what happens.... without a world consensus, stay out of Syria!!!!

    September 8, 2013 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  4. Lucky Cassie it jut me or is McCain suffering from dementia? He is a true 100% hero from the Vietnam war, but this does not make him the best choice for senator in 2013. He is the biggest FLIP-FLOPPER of all time. I stopped taking him seriously after he chose Palen for VP. What an idiotic decision. He screwed the election for the Republican Party, and this is why we have Barack-Insane-Obama as president now. Remember when he said "Let's give 11M + illegal immigrants citizenship" right before the 2007 election? Quick way to get the hispanic votes he needed, but it also made him an instant hypocrite in my mind. (and I am an immigrant who did it the HARD WAY (ie; legal way) by the way.

    September 8, 2013 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  5. Lynette Abel

    What is it that John McCain doesn't understand about We don't want another war?

    September 8, 2013 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  6. tepeters

    Nobody pays attention to Mc Cain except the media

    September 8, 2013 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  7. scooter

    The election is over, Mr. McCain. Put it behind you and let bygones and bygones.

    September 8, 2013 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  8. Smitty77

    I wouldn't be at all surprised if the "Rebels" didn't release gas to get the Americans involved in this war to beat up Assad! We nothing to prove that Assad did it and the "REBELS" look equally guilty. Also, the Russians have a military presence in Syria as well. Will someone toss a bomb over the fence to get the Russians to retaliate against the U.S.? Nothing is impossible in this mess!

    September 8, 2013 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  9. 4urpost

    NO to WAR...what about taking care of Americans 1st. We need to take care of our own business...this would lead us into World War and we say NO! Period. Yes it is sad what is happening, but why do we have to fix it? Take care our homeless 1st. Our children deserve better. Obama better listen to the American people, and know his place.

    September 8, 2013 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  10. Tim Bowtee

    The House should vote "no" (and it looks like that may be the case) and end this ridiculous matter once and for all.

    September 8, 2013 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  11. Daniel Su

    Senator McCain, it is best time for you to step down, and move to Las Vegas, and play poker 24-7, and elect new Senator who will sit through important Senate meetings without playing poker or watching porn.
    How ironic, is that McCain is the one who advocated sending troops to Syria to topple the Ass- ad regime, and now he says he will impeach president Obama, if he sends troops to Syria?

    September 8, 2013 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  12. wayne heddinger's okay for both bush white houses to give warnings before invading but it's not okay for Obama....typical right wing blunder lips.....

    September 8, 2013 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  13. Lynette

    What is it McCain doesn't understand about "We don't want another war?"

    September 8, 2013 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  14. 4urpost

    They think we're stupid...they'll push the world into war then come back and say they want peace! Then one world government. Well the gig is up.

    September 8, 2013 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  15. jimcolyer

    Obama and McCain are both insane.

    September 8, 2013 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  16. Rachael Krafft

    John McCain isn't running his mouth to run his mouth, he has an idea of what the people, us, are saying. No one wants another war, and we will not take kindly to false promises. We looked the other way with Bush because we were in shock and still terrified from 9/11... this time around too many people have been waiting for a big miss-step by Obama. I hope he heeds McCain's warning.

    September 8, 2013 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  17. JimmyGraham

    I Am so glad McCain did not get elected president.I know we would be in the middle of World War 111 by now..

    September 8, 2013 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  18. park more

    Great. Yes I agree with you for war but the impeachment is on the table

    September 8, 2013 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  19. Cooper5

    McCain appears to be senile. Impeachment can only be justified by evidence indicative of high crime, misdemeanor, or treason. That, friends, is what the Constitution says. Obama's final decision might very well be ill-advised, but it's hard to see how it could be characterized as any of the above.

    Impeachment seems to reflect the grudge of a bitter old man. Get over it John, you lost the election....

    September 8, 2013 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  20. Anti Talking Points

    Hi Benster:

    "Obama has not stopped the financial meltdown, he has prolonged it."

    He did not get Bin-laden, our military continued what Bush started to get Bin-Laden and succeeded, Afghanistan and Iraq are failures, there is more chaos in the region than before including the fiasco in Egypt. So far Obama has cost ATF agents lives with his lies on the drug war with Fast and Furious which is a joke, He has cost the lives of those in Benghazi with his lies and trying to spread misinformation with an internet film that had nothing to do with it as well as abusing his authority with the IRS scandals, and now the Syrian fiasco."

    September 8, 2013 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  21. brandX

    Tough talk from the Senator who was busted playing video poker on his cell phone during John Kerry's address on Syria.

    September 8, 2013 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  22. Patty

    I deplored the Iraq war. I was angry at Bush for starting it for 8 years. However, Syria is different, we have a reason to send missiles to destroy the chemical weapons. It cannot be overlooked and used against other countries including us in the future. Look at Hitler. He was ignored even by the United States. Do we want another dictator controlling the world?


    September 8, 2013 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  23. g.

    I shudder at the thought that this old,opinionated, sore loser war monger could have been our president. It's so easy to say what to do in situations where you will not be the one to deal with the fallout. John, go home, take Sarah hockey mom with you and pump some of your millions into the economy. Oh, and take a large pair of socks and stick them in your mouth.

    September 8, 2013 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  24. Name Trufh

    The world should stop folding their hands watching so many evil going on in so many natoins. . The world should surport Americans to stop so many evil going on in many countries of the world.

    September 8, 2013 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  25. Allaisa

    Is McCain and idiot or just talks like an idiot?

    September 8, 2013 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
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