John McCain *lost* the election
Magazines are bathroom reading, so forgive me for talking about an article that came out in April, but i wanted to call something out of this Obama Vs. The Hawks article in Rolling Stone. The article is sourced from anonymous former Obama advisers so i don't know how much stock to put in it. For example, there's a valiant effort to give Kerry credit for his sarcastic offhand remark that gave us an out on Syria and barely mentions Britain's rejection of military action there. But what i wanted to call out was this:
"In part, the reason why they were focusing on doing something on Syria is that they felt people were pushing them," says another former White House adviser. "McCain, Lindsey Graham - it is unbelievable how influential Senator Graham was in the president's thinking. They desperately wanted Lindsey on their side. It's a fact that those two - and you have to include Joe Lieberman and Senator Kelly Ayotte - have had enormous influence on the way the White House thinks. But why? They have influence far beyond the reality of their power."
The article doesn't provide an answer. But i agree it's a mind-boggling question. These Senators are the Hawkiest of Hawks whose answer to everything is to bomb, bomb, bomb. Voters at a national level rejected McCain for Obama (and also rejected Lieberman). So why is Obama going to McCain and his little gang for approval? This is beyond the fact that, as everyone is pointing out nowadays, McCain has basically been wrong about everything so it's not like he's got some deep insight into foreign affairs. I'm just talking from a pure "what's the point of an election?" point of view if the guy we voted for is going to spend his time trying to please the guy we voted against. Of course he did the same type of thing by making Hillary Clinton Secretary of State and bringing in people from Bill Clinton's administration (Geithner!) but at least there you can argue they're all broadly part of the same ideological coalition. Almost by definition, if you can get McCain and Graham to agree with you, you're working against your own political party.
And beyond all of that, does anyone think Obama could ever do anything that would make McCain and Graham run to the cameras and talk about how great it was? For all that they influence Obama, have they ever complimented him for it, or more to the point, worked their connections in Senate to help him get bills passed? Have they ever made any compromise or concession at all with the Obama administration? Consistently wrong, ideologically opposed, and unhelpful and unable to be satisfied. Why in the world would you keep reaching out to them?
By fnord12 | June 26, 2014, 8:12 PM | Liberal Outrage