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Hagel Suggests McCain Will Change Tune If Elected

By Glenn Kessler
Sen. John McCain may be blasting Sen. Barack Obama now for his willingness to meet with Iran's leaders, but Sen. Chuck Hagel -- a close friend of McCain's -- suggested tonight that McCain's rhetoric stems from presidential politics, not conviction.

The Nebraska Republican, sharing the stage with actor Michael Douglas at an event sponsored by the Ploughshares Fund, acknowledged that he and McCain, the presumptive GOP nominee, have had their differences over Iraq and other foreign policy issues.

But Hagel, who advocates direct talks with Iran, said that he has had long talks with his "very good friend" and if McCain is elected, Hagel was sure that McCain "would consult with experts" and "I have to believe John would be responsible here. He understands the big picture."

"Presidential candidates will say many things in a campaign," Hagel added. "I am very upset with John about some of things he is saying. ... He is smarter than some of the things he is saying."

By Web Politics Editor  |  May 20, 2008; 10:19 PM ET
 
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Comments

I used to support McCain and would have voted for him back in 2000. But after getting dizzy watching his position flip-flop back and forth so many times this past year or two, I wouldn't trust the man to walk my dog.

Posted by: wolf | May 21, 2008 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Hagel: "Don't worry, McCain is just lying now - he's not really this bad!"

How lame...

Posted by: Franky | May 21, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Hagel should be Obama's VP, or in his cabinet. He's the perfect answer for McCain's rhetoric.

Posted by: missy | May 21, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Hagel is that rare politician who actually thinks instead of looking up the party line. Sort of like Jim Baker. Am still waiting for Obama to use both sets of remarks to make McCain look ridiculous. The pundits are wondering why both candidates think this is a winning issue (one of them should be wrong). Like the gas tax break, I think Obama has the edge here.

Posted by: JoeT1 | May 21, 2008 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Noah David Simon,
This was about Hagel and McCain not about Ron Paul. Glad to see he is still own your mind though as he should be for all Americans that want to turn this country around. But since your comment was an obvious attack on Dr. Paul I have a question. Why don't you or anyone that attacks Ron Paul's platform have the guts to call the Founding Fathers nuts as well? I hear from neocons all the time how crazy Ron Paul's foreign policy is, or his economic policy is nuts even though all of Dr. Paul's policies are based on the Constitution which specifically states this it is the "Supreme Law of the Land". You know all branches of government derive their powers from the Constitution, not the other way around.

Jefferson warned us against a central bank(Federal Reserve) both publically and in several of his papers. He knew a centralized banking system would attract to much power and eventually destroy our money and republic and look at the current state of the economy because of the Federal Reserve destoying the dollar. People criticize Paul for wanting to abolish the Fed but wouldn't dare criticize Jefferson as being crazy for taking the same position.

Washington warned up against "entangling alliances" and meddling in the political affairs of other nations. Look how many lives through the years our foreign policy has cost us, not to mention the trillions of taxpayer dollars that could have been spent on education for our children and building a strong national defense not offense. Ron Paul says this exact same thing and he is labeled a nut by the establishment, yet not one of them would publically call George Washington a nut for stating the same thing.

My point is if you going to attack Ron Paul's platform then you might as well have the GUTS to attack the Constitution and the Founding Fathers because they are one and the same.

Posted by: J | May 21, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Noah David Simon,
This was about Hagel and McCain not about Ron Paul. Glad to see he is still own your mind though as he should be for all Americans that want to turn this country around. But since your comment was an obvious attack on Dr. Paul I have a question. Why don't you or anyone that attacks Ron Paul's platform have the guts to call the Founding Fathers nuts as well? I hear from neocons all the time how crazy Ron Paul's foreign policy is, or his economic policy is nuts even though all of Dr. Paul's policies are based on the Constitution which specifically states this it is the "Supreme Law of the Land". You know all branches of government derive their powers from the Constitution, not the other way around.

Jefferson warned us against a central bank(Federal Reserve) both publically and in several of his papers. He knew a centralized banking system would attract to much power and eventually destroy our money and republic and look at the current state of the economy because of the Federal Reserve destoying the dollar. People criticize Paul for wanting to abolish the Fed but wouldn't dare criticize Jefferson as being crazy for taking the same position.

Washington warned up against "entangling alliances" and meddling in the political affairs of other nations. Look how many lives through the years our foreign policy has cost us, not to mention the trillions of taxpayer dollars that could have been spent on education for our children and building a strong national defense not offense. Ron Paul says this exact same thing and he is labeled a nut by the establishment, yet not one of them would publically call George Washington a nut for stating the same thing.

My point is if you going to attack Ron Paul's platform then you might as well have the GUTS to attack the Constitution and the Founding Fathers because they are one and the same.

Posted by: J | May 21, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Hagel is that rare politician who actually thinks instead of looking up the party line. Sort of like Jim Baker. Am still waiting for Obama to use both sets of remarks to make McCain look ridiculous. The pundits are wondering why both candidates think this is a winning issue (one of them should be wrong). Like the gas tax break, I think Obama has the edge here.

Posted by: JoeT1 | May 21, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

God bless Chuck Hagel for his honest talk and candid assessment of Senator McCain's campaign. Senator Hagel is exactly the kind of leader the Republican party needs. Hopefully John McCain will heed Senator Hagel's words.

Posted by: Andrew | May 21, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse

The implication is that McCain is not capable of thing for himself. The frame set is that underneath it all, McCain is an empty suit.

Nice try twisting the real meaning of Hagel's words with bogus headline.

Good luck with that one: no one else is interpreting it that way.

Posted by: Headline is bogus | May 21, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Jibreel,

You're implying that Hagel will not win reelction this year because has betrayed his own party, but you're half right.

Hagel won't win reelction because he's not running.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 21, 2008 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Check this out. More details on Hagel's comments. He suggests that impeachment could loom for Bush if there is a military attack on Iran without Congressional approval.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/05/20/chuck-hagel-takes-on-mcca_n_102775.html

Posted by: suekzoo | May 21, 2008 8:18 AM | Report abuse

Way to go Chuck. Expose your boy.

Posted by: zulu | May 21, 2008 7:49 AM | Report abuse

There is a rumor that Barack is strongly considering Hagel as a vice-president candidate...Pundates agree this would be a blockbuster move by Obama!

Posted by: DJP | May 21, 2008 7:44 AM | Report abuse

Well, isn't that sweet? His little friend has been lying on the campaign trail but he still loves him.

Get back to work.

Posted by: DLW | May 21, 2008 3:52 AM | Report abuse

Live it up Hagel because you will be as electable as Ron Paul's presidential candidacy. Iran? Woah... you sure know how to pick a winning issue. Even if you were right, your a dumb ass.

Posted by: Noah David Simon | May 21, 2008 2:27 AM | Report abuse

Chill out. Hagel is basically saying McCain is a good man and will be a better Prez than Bush. They are both mavericks with similar convictions, values, and voting records/ They are the true conservatives, wheras the Malkin crowd are just a bunch of loud-mouthed thugs whose time will pass.

Posted by: Vic Tory | May 21, 2008 1:18 AM | Report abuse

Chuck Hagel is the Republican version of John Edwards in that he receives more of a platform than his importance warrants.

Posted by: danielhancock | May 21, 2008 12:26 AM | Report abuse

What about Israel? You are better than this Sen Hagel. Damm I hate how Washington can change a good man.

Posted by: Jibreel Riley | May 21, 2008 12:20 AM | Report abuse

Thanks senator Hagel. It is time time someone said the right thing even if you are goin agaist the grain with ower party leaders. We have need more people like the Senator in ower party.

Posted by: Ron Kairo | May 21, 2008 12:14 AM | Report abuse

Thankfully one Republican can see through the rhetoric of the McCain campaign. The problem with Republicans is that they are abandoning many principles of the Reagan revolution in order to scare voters and attract votes. As James Baker stated, talking with your enemies is not appeasement (and he went to Syria 16 times when they were on this list of state sponsors of terror)

Posted by: jack | May 21, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

A politician (Hagel) tells the truth and it's so foreign to us that people blast him instead of McCain!

Posted by: Dave | May 21, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

A politician (Hagel) tells the truth and it's so foreign to us that people blast him instead of McCain!

Posted by: Dave | May 21, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

A politician (Hagel) tells the truth and it's so foreign to us that people blast him instead of McCain!

Posted by: Dave | May 21, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

A politician (Hagel) tells the truth and it's so foreign to us that people blast him instead of McCain!

Posted by: Dave | May 21, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

Senator Hagel. I am very happy you are being vocal about your dissatisfaction with McCain. He has been saying things which are being interpreted by the American public, and in turn create false ideas about the candidates for president. This election is too important for anyone to be talking about anything else than truthful issues that matter to the American public.

ps. Won't you endorse Obama?

Posted by: Nick Z | May 21, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

A politician (Hagel) tells the truth and it's so foreign to us that people blast him instead of McCain!

Posted by: Dave | May 21, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

Sen Hagel, If I can speak for the Conservative wing of the GOP thanks for nothing. Enjoy Nebraska after January.

Sincerely

Jibreel Riley

Posted by: Jibreel Riley | May 20, 2008 11:57 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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