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Wesley Clark ‘Stands By’ McCain Remarks

From Fox News:

Clark Seeks to Clarify Critical Remarks of McCain’s Military Service

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

… [A]fter two days of angry responses and denunciations on both sides, Clark tried to clarify that while he respects McCain’s military service, he believes Obama has better judgment — without having served in the military — to be president.

“As a retired service man, someone who came home from Vietnam on a stretcher, someone who spent 38 years in uniform, someone who’s worked his way up through the ranks of the United States Armed Forces, I would never discredit anyone who chose to wear the uniform. I fully respect John McCain and his service, and I’ve said so repeatedly,” Clark told ABC’s “Good Morning America.”

“My point is that there’s a difference in preparing yourself for the highest office in the land. … John McCain as a young officer demonstrated courage and character. But the service as president is about judgment. And the experience that he had as a fighter pilot isn’t the same as having been at the highest levels of the military,” he said, adding that Obama had nothing to do with his remarks.

Asked if he owed McCain an apology, Clark responded: “I want to say first that Senator Obama had nothing to do with this. … I’m very sorry that this has distracted from the message of patriotism that Senator Obama wants to put out. But I want to make very clear that as a Democrat and as a former Army officer, I fully respect Senator McCain and all others who have served.” …

McCain, who was captured by North Vietnamese soldiers after his plane was shot down in 1968, called the comments “unnecessary.”

On Tuesday, McCain spokesman Brian Rogers said Clark’s words don’t amount to an apology, and Obama’s campaign aides “are either encouraging or tolerating his attacks.”

“The Obama campaign even said they were ‘glad’ that Gen. Clark ‘clarified’ a comment they supposedly repudiated. If this kind of wink-and-nod game is how Barack Obama wants to run his campaign, then fine. But spare us the empty talk of ‘new politics’ and raising the dialogue in this country. We just wonder: Will Barack Obama’s actions ever match his words?” Rogers said, according to a statement…

Tuesday morning, the campaign held a phone conference with McCain backers Sen. Lindsay Graham of South Carolina and retired Marine Lt. Col. Orson Swindle…

Swindle, who was also a former prisoner of war in Vietnam, said Clark “ought to be ashamed of himself,” and suggested Obama’s handling of the issue shows “he can’t even lead his surrogates. He’s not going to do a good job of being commander in chief.” …

[S]everal left-wing blogs have defended Clark and suggested that McCain is a war criminal for bombing Hanoi during the Vietnam War.

Mr. Swindle raises a good point:

Swindle… suggested Obama’s handling of the issue shows “he can’t even lead his surrogates. He’s not going to do a good job of being commander in chief.”

Hell, Mr. Obama can’t even handle his wife.

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, July 1st, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

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