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WH staffers to Vanity Fair: McCain doesn't care much for Obama

By Matt DeLong
Vanity Fair's Todd Purdum is out with a new article examining GOP Sen. John McCain's career since his defeat at the hands of Barack Obama in 2008. The biggest takeaway: McCain really doesn't like Obama much -- at least from the perspective of anonymous White House staffers.

The most striking exchange of this perceived contempt that Purdum describes comes from a meeting between the president and members of Congress during Obama's Afghanistan strategy review last year:

It was at a moment when Dick Cheney and other Republicans were accusing Obama of dithering. McCain undertook to lecture him, saying, in the recollection of one Obama adviser who was there, "Mr. President, you're the commander in chief, and I hope you're not taking your responsibilities lightly." Obama replied tersely, "Yes, John, I am commander in chief, and I assure you I am not taking my responsibilities lightly."

Purdum also writes that McCain's contempt for the president was on display at a Senate GOP lunch in May, where Obama met with the Republican caucus behind closed doors. From Vanity Fair:

McCain accused the president of misrepresenting Arizona's Draconian new immigration law (which McCain had endorsed, and which Obama's Justice Department was preparing to challenge). "You can tell he can barely [expletive] stand the fact that he was beaten by Barack Obama," says one senior White House aide who was present. "Throughout the whole meeting, he would not look at the president, even when he was talking to him.

Again, this is all through the eyes of people who work for Obama -- and may be particularly sensitive to such slights. But if McCain does have any fondness for the man who defeated him, he certainly appears to be hiding it.

By Matt DeLong  | October 7, 2010; 1:35 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency  
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Comments

"..comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site."

Calling any American POW a traitor is probably libelous and is certainly "a personal attack" and an "inappropriate comment". But then I expected as much from "patsy61", but not that the Post would allow it.

Posted by: jmhfnr | October 8, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Its not that hard to understand McCain's attitude. After serving for many years in the Navy and spending time as a POW, McCain enters politics and becomes a well-respected Senator through accomplishments on tax reform and defense. Then 6 years ago, this poseur with no accomplishments to his name becomes a Senator, spends the next 4 years in the Senate doing little but promoting himself and then running for President, and then somehow manages to win despite a lack of any discernible executive or leadership skills. Its no surprise that someone with experience like McCain would reasonably question Obama's seriousness and abilities.

Posted by: Illini | October 8, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

NO News Here People, Everbody knows that even before Healthcare Reform, McCain contempt for President Obama was and is still obvious. Remember the election debates,calling Obama "That one" and not looking at him. The fact that President Obama called him out as a know nothing person during the economy meltdown Also, everyone of his lies and dumb plans failed and came back & bit him in the rear.

We all know that McCain is hellbent on bringing down Obama at all cost. Because of his jeaslousies and hate, he ends up destroying himself and his so-called legacy.

Again the Washington Post writes JUNK.

Posted by: minnie2 | October 8, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

President Obama cannot take criticism; the evidence is in his less than presidential attacks that continue against those who disagree with him instead. We aren't "hearing" him clearly and that's why we don't back his policies.

Elections have consequences and for John McCain one of those consequences is the Obama Administration reporting Arizona to the United Nations for human rights violations for a law that has not even gone into affect yet because of a lawsuit the President filed against the state of Arizona. John McCain's constituents have had contracts taken out on their lives by the Mexican Drug Cartels, John McCain's constituents have illegal immigrants crossing their lands and killing some of them. John McCain's state has a hospital bill for the treatment of chronically ill illegal immigrants that is helping to bankrupt the state; John McCain has constituents that watch as Federal Signs go up on Federal Lands warning the citizens of Arizona to stay out of those lands - not to protect the environment, not to preserve the wilderness for future generations, no....because the trafficking of humans and drugs has become so dangerous on those lands and because the Federal Government will not help Arizona to fight the battle.

It is little wonder if John McCain doesn't like Obama much....and I doubt that would be any different if McCain had not been running for president and lost to Obama.

Posted by: LMW6 | October 8, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

No $#!+ Sherlock! I watched President Obama meet with John McCain and others when McCain tried to scold him. The President told him in so many words, I won, you lost, deal with it. LOLOL. John McCain is a loser who has shown his true cowardly colors since he lost the election, even before that by picking that idiot Palin as his running mate. He has such a sense of entitlement that he has no conscience about his decisions. Read up on his performance aboard the Navy ship that caught on fire due to his negligence. He's a total dweeb and does not deserve to be a US Senator. He was a traitor during his years as a POW and he is a traitor now.

Posted by: patsy61 | October 8, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Maybe Obama should have replied "John, coming from the man who picked Sarah Palin as his running mate, you certainly are experienced at taking one's role lightly! Thanks for the expert advice. Now go home and lick your wounds for your failed campaign - you sore loser!"

Posted by: gregp1 | October 7, 2010 6:15 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Obama should have replied "John, coming from the man who picked Sarah Palin as his running mate, you certainly are experienced at taking one's role lightly! Thanks for the expert advice. Now go home and lick your wounds for your failed campaign - you sore loser!"

Posted by: gregp1 | October 7, 2010 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Obama should have replied "John, coming from the man who picked Sarah Palin as his running mate, you certainly are a shining example of taking ones role seriously! Thank you very much for that superflous commentary. Now go home and lick your wounds for your failed campaign you sore loser."

Posted by: gregp1 | October 7, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Obama should have replied "John, thank you for that superfluous bit of condescending instruction. I see you take your role of as crotchety old sore loser quite seriously."

Posted by: gregp1 | October 7, 2010 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Obama should have replied "John, thank you for that superfluous bit of condescending instruction. I see you take your role of as crotchety old sore loser quote seriously."

Posted by: gregp1 | October 7, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Who beat McCain? "That one!"

McCain is not a "shake hands" sort of guy; if you recall, he never really got over getting swift-boated by the Bush/Rove machine in 2000.

Posted by: OldUncleTom | October 7, 2010 4:39 PM | Report abuse

Who does like Obama?

Obama puts a capital "C" in Creepy!

Posted by: theaz | October 7, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

WOW! I'm shocked I tell you shocked - not.

This is not news. Anyone who saw the exchange between Sen. McCain and Pres. Obama during the Health Care Reform discussion in Feb. could see that McCain was still bitter because he lost.

Posted by: rlj1 | October 7, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Unpossible!

What's next, a story on Gore's contempt for Bush 43?

Posted by: ah___ | October 7, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

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