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.

[twitter-follow screen_name='politicalticker'][twitter-follow screen_name='jseher']

"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. Aaron

    McCain is an idiot and needs to retire ASAP...

    September 7, 2013 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  2. omeany

    So McCain does everything possible to get us involved in yet another endless war and now he has the audacity to say the President "bungled" it. No Sir, You are the guilty party here. Stop your war mongering. The US does NOT want another pointless military action that wastes US lives and money.

    September 7, 2013 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  3. gorfulblab

    Wow. He said 'impeachment'. My pulse quickens; I am on the edge of my seat.

    September 7, 2013 11:08 pm at 11:08 pm |
  4. jake17

    Crisis? This civil war is more than a year old, suddenly there is a crisis?

    September 7, 2013 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  5. Name Uche Agonsi

    McCain has become an unstoppable two-edged sword. He is adding new dimentions to this venture every second. He is diabolical. His alliance with Sec. Kerry in this game is what disturbs me most.......two failed but friendly presidential candidates, with antiquated ethics of muscle-flexing rolling punches in a 21st century digital bereaucracy as diplomatic tool. The issue is whether Obama can handle them.

    September 7, 2013 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  6. Just

    The community organizer experiment is a fail

    September 7, 2013 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  7. The Colonel

    Repulbicans are just dying to impeach Prez Obama. The day a black man became president, the KKK came out in full force.

    September 7, 2013 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  8. doc77

    He's a republican...ok?

    September 7, 2013 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  9. guitarken

    McCain is completely out of his mind – his stance is in opposition to itself. I think dementia is really setting in.

    September 7, 2013 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  10. liberal disease

    this is not Bungling, this is a inmature,overwhelmed leftist, this is normal.

    September 7, 2013 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  11. doug

    Senator McCain, with all due respect, is an embarrassment and he should retire. He has turned into a political hack who just refights old lost battles and makes a spectacle of himself. It's sad. He should just hang out at the Olive Garden and blow on his soup.

    September 7, 2013 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  12. PtBarnumBoy

    Poor old John, someone really should tell him he's demented.

    September 7, 2013 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
  13. T E X A S

    McCain....not helping ANYTHING. Dottering old geezer.

    September 7, 2013 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  14. bassman

    He would have made an outstanding President. His Vietnam experience has made him a voice for foreign policy.

    September 7, 2013 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  15. snomannn

    This message and criticism of Obama by Sen. McCain "the bungler in chief" the guy who gave us Sarah Palin....ha ha , good one John.

    September 7, 2013 11:19 pm at 11:19 pm |
  16. snomannn

    McCain calls Obama a "bungler"? McCain, the same guy who gave us Sara Palin, calls Obama a bungler?

    September 7, 2013 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  17. Total2199

    Senator McCain! People of Arizona must have impeached you a long time ago. This is a shame that you are still in the Senate and still warmongering

    September 7, 2013 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  18. Beni

    I really think the rebels gassed their own people, filmed it, and are now using the videos to trick us into attacking Syria. The Syrian government can't be that stupid to use chemical weapons but the rebels are desperate and if we're not careful, we'll be tricked into a war no one wants.

    September 7, 2013 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  19. Mike

    If there is a term limit for Presidency, why is it that we don't have term limit for Senators? This guy has been there for too long and it shows!!

    September 7, 2013 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  20. Floyd from Illinois

    Senator One-tool knows very well who worked tirelessly to prevent this President from acting, within his authority, on Syria.

    He need look no further than his own colleagues in the GOP for the 'bungling' of which he complains.

    September 7, 2013 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  21. Whatever

    No one impeached GW Bush for his invasion of Iraq under false pretense.

    September 7, 2013 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  22. Headscratcher

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

    I have been baffled by the virtual unintended heads up Obama gave Assad. He even admitted that the Syrian Gov't is already hiding and moving his military assets around. Where is his rational? What a humongous mess this is becoming. I guess common sense isn't required to become President.

    September 7, 2013 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  23. basedonfact

    Demand action and threaten to impeach over action in the same sentence. Wow. McCain needs a nap

    September 7, 2013 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  24. Freddy

    Impeachment? What a clown. He just wanted an excuse to say the word impeachment. He may not even know what it means anymore. I think he should retire and get some medical attention.

    September 7, 2013 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm |
  25. FrmerMrine

    Why is this guy still talking? Isn't it enough that he bullied everyone into wanting to go to war in Syria? After all, he's been beating that drum for 2 years. Now, he's making noises that going to war is Syria is bad or that it's not being done to his liking? What is wrong with this guy?

    September 7, 2013 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41