Friday, November 25, 2005

McCain, Chafee Join Democrats In Calling For Review Of Bush Administration's Pre-War Statements

Republican Senators John McCain of Arizona and Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island have joined Democratic leaders in suggesting Senate investigators should interview senior Bush administration officials about their statements regarding the threat posed by Saddam Hussein before the war.

Other Republicans who may agree with the need for a review remain on the sidelines. The reason? Fear of a backlash from the party base, should they seek a 2008 presidential run. Unlike McCain -- also a likely 2008 candidate -- other Republicans wouldn't want to run as "mavericks."

According to The Hill, Sen. Mike DeWine (R-OH) said he would reserve judgment on whether senior administration officials should testify before the intelligence panel. Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS), who is also expected to run for president in 2008, deferred comment for now.

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Senate Democrats have called for an evaluation of pre-invasion statements about the threat posed by Iraq’s weapons capabilities by President Bush, Vice President Cheney, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, then-Secretary of State Colin Powell, then-Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz and then-National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice.

Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, is pressing for some of those officials to be interviewed as part of that evaluation process and has argued that a thorough report cannot be written without interviews, but Republicans have so far resisted.

But McCain, a senior member of the Armed Services Committee, said he would not endorse questioning President Bush or Vice President Cheney. Instead, he would target cabinet secretaries and key undersecretaries, like Douglas Feith, the former undersecretary of defense who played an important role in the months before the war in analyzing Iraqi intelligence for the White House.

That shouldn't be surprising, because ever since Bush created the bipartisan Robb-Silberman commission last year to investigate pre-war intelligence failures, McCain has made it clear that he thought the intelligence community failed Bush.

"The president of the United States, I believe, did not manipulate any kind of information for political gain or otherwise," McCain told The Boston Globe the week that the commission, which included McCain, was announced.

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Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS) appears to be the main Republican running interference for the adminstration, with a boatload of excuses as to why interviews should be on the back burner.

He said Senators should first wait for the Senate Intelligence Committee to complete its much-delayed report on prewar intelligence. And Feith? Roberts doesn't want to investigate him until the Department of Defense inspector general has finished a review.

It's sort of a chicken-and-egg problem, according to The Hill, because Democrats want the interviews to factor into the report.

But there may be a more basic reason for Roberts' protests: "Republican strategists fear the prospect of Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz trying to justify statements they made about the Iraqi threat using hazy intelligence," the newspaper reports.

11 Comments:

Anonymous central scrutinizer said...

Way to go Mr. Opportunism

fuck you - you have carried water for the maladministration even after their 2000 whispering campaign that you were crazy, had fathered a black baby and had a wife who was a crazed drug addict.

8:22 PM  
Anonymous babsbunny said...

Ed Schultz said McCain is involved only to protect the Bush and Cheney.

8:24 PM  
Anonymous jaxx said...

McCain is all over the place with his ideals. I just can't find it in myself to trust a guy who would say yes out of one side of his mouth, while the other side says no.

8:27 PM  
Anonymous karynnj said...

What a hypocrite! He's on the Robb-Silberman Commission which was charged with this task. When it was decided quietly with no words publicly said not to do part 2 of the study, did McCain say anything? When Kerry complained that it was not done and wrote a letter to the Intelligence committee that 9 other Senators signed, McCain did not sign it. Last week he was quoted by Cheney because he had said the President didn't distort the information. Now because over half the country believes Bush misled, McCain wants to investigate. So he's a maverick? HE'S A CHARLATAN

8:30 PM  
Anonymous BenDavid said...

That is good news, but they should not allow McCain to be the main speaker in any press conference. Nor give him nothing more then as a Senator that wants to look into this matter......

11:25 AM  
Anonymous Robbins said...

Mark my words Mccain Is preparing for his 2008 run to separate himself from Bush,and try to convince Independents,and some Moderate Democrats he Is a moderate. Mccain Is a conservative not a right wing conservative. The facts are he Is with Bush 90 percent of the time. The press will try to portray him as a opposite of Bush.

11:26 AM  
Anonymous Punkingal said...

He is the darling of the press, and they are planning to annoint him in 2008.

11:26 AM  
Anonymous kahuna said...

It's not good news. McCain has an alterior motive. He just wants to gum up the works, and take credit for whatever the findings are. He's a snake and I don't trust him as far as I can throw him.

3:14 AM  
Anonymous dogday said...

I used to like McCain till I saw him with his arm around GW and it made me sick to see him sink that low. He used to have a great character but I guess politics changes everything....

3:14 AM  
Anonymous Savannah Progressive said...

It's a waste of time and irrelevant. REmember we voted 403-3 to KEEP THE TROOPS in Iraq despite the obvious lies.

3:15 AM  
Anonymous Idioteque said...

I like Linc Chafee He was the only Repub in the Senate to vote against the war. A lot of people here don't understand how much he helps us behind the scenes. He stops a lot of bad environmental legislation from getting out of committee. If he were to switch parties now, his committee spots would be filled by wingnuts.

John McCain, on the other hand, is a tool. I don't know why he is considered a moderate. He votes with the Democrats on like 5% of legislation.

3:15 AM  

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