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Stephanopoulos to McCain: 'I Can't Believe You Believe That'
News Busters ^ | July 28, 2008 | Brent Baker

Posted on 07/27/2008 11:10:43 PM PDT by Red Steel

On Sunday's This Week, ABC's George Stephanopoulos condemned John McCain for charging that “Senator Obama would rather lose a war in order to win a political campaign.” Stephanopoulos, who interviewed McCain on Saturday at his Arizona ranch, declared: “I can't believe you believe that.” McCain insisted “I'm not questioning his patriotism. I'm questioning his actions. I'm questioning his lack, total lack of understanding,” leading Stephanopoulos to counter: “But that is questioning his patriotism. When you say someone would rather lose a war, a candidate, that's questioning his honor, his decency, his character.”

As McCain continued to defend his assessment, Stephanopoulos kept rejecting his reasoning (“So putting lives at risk for a political campaign, you believe he's doing that?”) and excoriating his characterization of Obama: “But you're questioning his motives.”

Stephanopoulos matched a theme pushed on Wednesday's World News by ABC reporter David Wright. My July 23 NewsBusters item recounted:

Wright began his interview with McCain by scolding him for his “extraordinary statement” that “Obama would rather lose a war in order to win a political campaign.” Wright demanded: “Do you really think he's that craven?” Wright also lectured: “But what you seem to be saying there is that it's all about personal ambition for him and not about what he honestly thinks is right for the country.”

The exchange on the Sunday, July 27 This Week in the interview taped the day before in Arizona, with McCain's dogs walking around them at least once:

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: You've taken heat this week with your comments saying that Senator Obama would rather lose a war than win a political campaign. I can't believe you believe that.

JOHN McCAIN: Well, I'm not questioning his patriotism. I'm questioning his actions. I'm questioning his lack, total lack of understanding.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But that is questioning his patriotism. When you say someone would rather lose a war, a candidate, that's questioning his honor, his decency, his character.

McCAIN: All I'm say something is, and I will repeat, he does not understand. I'm not questioning his patriotism. I am saying that he made the decision which was political in order to help him get the nomination.

STEPHANOPOULOS: So putting lives at risk for a political campaign, you believe he's doing that?

McCAIN: I believe that when he said that we had to leave Iraq and we had to be out by last March and we had to have a date certain, that was in contravention to and still is to the Chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, General David Petraeus. When he never asked to sit down for a briefing with General Petraeus, our commander on the ground, when he waited 900 days to go back again where young American lives are on the line, I think that's a fundamental lack of understanding and I think the American people will make the appropriate choices.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But you're questioning his motives.

McCAIN: I say that it was very clear that a decision had to be made, and I made it when it wasn't popular. He made a decision which was popular with his base, and that is a fundamental difference and he does not understand and did not understand and still doesn't understand that the surge was the vital strategy in us not having to lose a war, chaos, genocide, increased influence of Iranians in the region, the consequences of failure would have been severe. Now the benefits are enormous of a stable ally in the region, of a country that is a friend of ours, a break on Iranian influence, certainly a break on al Qaeda and other jihadist organizations. So he made the decision that that was the best way to go to get the nomination of his party.


TOPICS: Extended News; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: biasmeanslayoffs; clintonista; clintonopoulos; drivebymedia; iraq; iraqsurge; liberalmedia; mccain; mediabias; obama; propagandawingofdnc; trysellingthetruth
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Of course Obama would rather lose Iraq Miss Stephie.
1 posted on 07/27/2008 11:10:43 PM PDT by Red Steel
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To: Red Steel
"Obama would rather lose a war..."

The most logical and sane statement McCain has made all year...
2 posted on 07/27/2008 11:15:15 PM PDT by Fred (The Democrat Party is the Nadir of Nilhilism)
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To: Red Steel

‘Bout time for McCain to go for the jugular! I just hope he doesn’t back down on this later. Good for him.


3 posted on 07/27/2008 11:15:45 PM PDT by Hetty_Fauxvert (Marxist Obama will trash the USA for the next 30 years. Vote McCain!)
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To: Red Steel
Stephanopoulos, who interviewed McCain on Saturday at his Arizona ranch, declared: “I can't believe you believe that.”

Stephanopoulos knows its true.

4 posted on 07/27/2008 11:15:48 PM PDT by Mojave
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To: Red Steel

When it comes to interviews, John McCain is no John Bolton.


5 posted on 07/27/2008 11:17:03 PM PDT by no dems (99% of the Politicians give all the others a bad name.)
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I can’t believe George Stephanopoulos is that naïve. And I don’t.


6 posted on 07/27/2008 11:17:37 PM PDT by CounterCounterCulture (I have already previewed or do not wish to preview this composition.)
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To: Red Steel
A Middle Eastern view on inauguration day if Obama becomes president


7 posted on 07/27/2008 11:18:45 PM PDT by Fred (The Democrat Party is the Nadir of Nilhilism)
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To: Red Steel

Dang, I’d say McCain about nailed that one. Stephi was obviously angry and appalled and tried to nail him to the wall. However, McCain was able to articulate his position and draw the contrast out even more.

Craven political player vs. wise leader able to make tough choices.

The contrast in character and judgement just keeping showing up, deeper and richer every day.


8 posted on 07/27/2008 11:18:51 PM PDT by Wiseghy ("You want to break this army? Then break your word to it.")
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To: Red Steel

McCain nails it in one.


9 posted on 07/27/2008 11:20:24 PM PDT by DieHard the Hunter (Is mise an ceann-cinnidh. Cha ghéill mi do dhuine. Fàg am bealach.)
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I'd be happy to question them. Obama has none of those traits.
10 posted on 07/27/2008 11:20:38 PM PDT by CounterCounterCulture (I have already previewed or do not wish to preview this composition.)
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To: Red Steel

I have to agree with Stephanopoulos when he says that McCain is questioning Obama’s motives. That seems to be exactly what McCain is doing.

So am I.


11 posted on 07/27/2008 11:22:07 PM PDT by gitmo (From now on, ending a sentence with a preposition is something up with which I will not put.)
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To: Red Steel

He has only promised to end the war. Stephy knows this. If Obama does not plan on losing, then perhaps he should elaborate on exactly how he would win, not just end, the war.


12 posted on 07/27/2008 11:25:49 PM PDT by Vince Ferrer
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To: no dems
"John McCain is no John Bolton. "

You got that right! And tell me again, why we're running John McCain instead of John Bolton......

13 posted on 07/27/2008 11:26:27 PM PDT by matthew fuller (I'm John McCain, and I hereby repudiate and disavow all Republican and Conservative values.)
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To: Red Steel

“I’ve come to believe that he needs a certain level of violence in this country. He’s willing to accept a certain level of killing to further his political agenda and his vice president, too.” LA PIERRE on CLINTON

Oh how I recall the Media FRENZY!


14 posted on 07/27/2008 11:27:39 PM PDT by endthematrix (Congress, Get Off Your Gas, And Drill!)
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To: matthew fuller

Because John Bolton will be the next SecState. (Don’t dash my optimism here...)


15 posted on 07/27/2008 11:30:40 PM PDT by SolidWood (Obamarxislamism, the threat to our Republic!)
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To: Red Steel

I’ve never heard Obama say he wants us to win.


16 posted on 07/27/2008 11:33:47 PM PDT by skr (I serve a risen Savior!)
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To: Red Steel

‘To anger a conservative, tell a lie;
To anger a liberal, tell the truth.’


17 posted on 07/27/2008 11:35:20 PM PDT by Ben Reyes (My Only Regret in Life is Having a Daughter with a Moderate Viewpoint...Other Than That, it's Peachy)
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To: Red Steel

Steffie worked for a president who started an unwinnable, pointless war to take the public’s mind off his adultery. I wish McCain had said that to his face.


18 posted on 07/27/2008 11:35:36 PM PDT by ozzymandus
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To: matthew fuller

We are running John McCain because he is a Great Leader and a Great American and John Bolton is a good follower and good mid level Diplomat. And WE are telling You again as You have requested because obviously You just dont get it yet!


19 posted on 07/27/2008 11:37:56 PM PDT by NOBAMA in 08 (An Empty Suited Opportunist with No Redeeming Value!)
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To: SolidWood
"Because John Bolton will be the next SecState. (Don’t dash my optimism here...) "

Since McCain is the "presumptive" and almost a done deal, maybe he could choose Bolton for VP- but that's highly wishful thinking. Sec State would be great. America greatly needs a white male heterosexual SecState.

20 posted on 07/27/2008 11:39:44 PM PDT by matthew fuller (I'm John McCain, and I hereby repudiate and disavow all Republican and Conservative values.)
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To: Red Steel

Every time McCain says “I’m not questioning his patriotism”.....after commenting on Obama Leftist anti-American interests position.........I could SCREAM...

He SHOULD say — “Yes - perhaps I am questioning his patriotism, I will continue to question it until I see Obama putting American interests above those of everyone else, including his own and his party’s political ambitions.”

America’s interests must be held above everything else...


21 posted on 07/27/2008 11:40:03 PM PDT by river rat (Semper Fi - You may turn the other cheek, but I prefer to look into my enemy's vacant dead eyes.)
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To: NOBAMA in 08

John Bolton is a Great Leader, a Great American, and a proven supporter of American Sovereignty. I disagree that GWB would select a MID level Diplomat for the US Ambassador to the UN.


22 posted on 07/27/2008 11:51:53 PM PDT by matthew fuller (I'm John McCain, and I hereby repudiate and disavow all Republican and Conservative values.)
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To: Red Steel

Ted Kennedy did it with Vietnam in December of 1974, why wouldn’t a democrat do it again?


23 posted on 07/27/2008 11:52:13 PM PDT by Steve Van Doorn (*in my best Eric cartman voice* 'I love you guys')
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To: endthematrix

I remember when Wayne LaPierre of the NRA said what no one else would say about Clinton in 1996. That’s why I joined the NRA. And I had never owned a gun before then (I do now).


24 posted on 07/27/2008 11:52:30 PM PDT by deks
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To: Red Steel

Stephanopoulos is a lying mouse.

It is, after all, his Democrats who wring their hands in glee every time they can announce that some “benchmark” casualty figure has been reached.

OF COURSE the scumbag Democrats don’t want the United States to win the war in Iraq. That would be a political loss for THEM. The Democrats are as fully invested in losing the war as they are in tanking the economy.

The rats want lots of body bags and a devastating (”It’s the economy, stupid”) recession. Period.
Because that’s the stuff they exploit to WIN ELECTIONS.

And Princess Stephie knows it.


25 posted on 07/27/2008 11:53:14 PM PDT by Lancey Howard
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To: NOBAMA in 08

And welcome to FReeRepublic!


26 posted on 07/27/2008 11:54:39 PM PDT by matthew fuller (I'm John McCain, and I hereby repudiate and disavow all Republican and Conservative values.)
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To: Lancey Howard

“Because that’s the stuff they exploit to WIN ELECTIONS.”

That’s the stuff they exploit to tighten the screws and abolish liberty, which they will do AFTER winning elections.


27 posted on 07/28/2008 12:01:30 AM PDT by SatinDoll (Desperately desiring a conservative government.)
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To: matthew fuller
Bolton was a AEI think-tanker with a smattering of public office positions.
28 posted on 07/28/2008 12:03:32 AM PDT by endthematrix (Congress, Get Off Your Gas, And Drill!)
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To: Red Steel; All

This is the type of thing that we need to see and hear more of. Of course Obama would like to see us lose in Iraq if it means he could be president. Any idiot can see this. Obama cares nothing about the United States. He wants the power. It should be obvious to any intelligent person what Obama is. He is a buffoon.


29 posted on 07/28/2008 12:04:50 AM PDT by truthguy (Good intentions are not enough!)
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To: matthew fuller

You dont need to do that:-P You’d be surprized!


30 posted on 07/28/2008 12:05:40 AM PDT by NOBAMA in 08 (An Empty Suited Opportunist with No Redeeming Value!)
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To: NOBAMA in 08

I understand, been there, done that.


31 posted on 07/28/2008 12:10:27 AM PDT by matthew fuller (I'm John McCain, and I hereby repudiate and disavow all Republican and Conservative values.)
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To: Mojave

I consider George Stephanapolus to be a traitor to America.
He comes from Lebanon and does not show his love for this country. I am very troubled by people like George who come to this country and have a good job and living and yet they are willing to work for destruction of this country. Obama is one who wants to destroy this country, so just read his Senate bill 2433. That is a bill that does absolutely nothing for the USA, and it is nothing more than robbery of the American people. We just do not deserve this at all.


32 posted on 07/28/2008 12:12:22 AM PDT by tessalu
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To: Red Steel
I believe that when he said that we had to leave Iraq and we had to be out by last March and we had to have a date certain, that was in contravention to and still is to the Chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, General David Petraeus. When he never asked to sit down for a briefing with General Petraeus, our commander on the ground, when he waited 900 days to go back again where young American lives are on the line, I think that's a fundamental lack of understanding and I think the American people will make the appropriate choices.

Steffie just will never understand what's wrong with those decisions.

33 posted on 07/28/2008 12:14:41 AM PDT by SuziQ
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To: matthew fuller

Obviously, You like John Bolton. I am more than sure that Our Great President would assure You that John Bolton cant hold a candle to Senator John McCain. As to Ambassador to the U.N., that in many of Our books is a useless Organization covered by Mid Level Diplomats. If You care to disagree, good, knock your socks off:-)
Print up some banners and buttons stating:
“ John Bolton for President!”
If Amb. Bolton wins, I am sure he will select You for Amb. to the U.N., for sure...........


34 posted on 07/28/2008 12:15:41 AM PDT by NOBAMA in 08 (An Empty Suited Opportunist with No Redeeming Value!)
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To: river rat

Psychologically, when a person starts a sentence with a negative, “I’m not saying (whatever)”, that’s exactly what he/she is saying. Because the person believes that, he/she denies it before saying it. (I was a psychological examiner for twenty-five years.)


35 posted on 07/28/2008 12:20:30 AM PDT by Marcella (Will work in my rose garden (with wine) and not listen to McCain.)
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To: matthew fuller

Yes, I noticed that registration date, too, and the person’s excessively sharp language when there was some criticism of McCain is consistent with some other newbies. Some conservatives, including me, are not accepting of McCain and that’s just the way it is. Yelling at us is not nice.


36 posted on 07/28/2008 12:32:49 AM PDT by Marcella (Will work in my rose garden (with wine) and not listen to McCain.)
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To: Red Steel

Stephanopoulos is just one more little faggot that is totally in the tank for Obama-lama-ding-dong.

Hey JohnnyMac? Is it just me, or are all of your ‘friends’ in the media who used to worship you and fight each other for a seat on that ‘Straight Talk Express’ bus, dwindling in number?

The proper response to Lil Miss Stephie would have been “Mr. Stephanopoulos, as a little twerp who has never worn the uniform, tell me just what the Hell YOU think you know about patriotism?”


37 posted on 07/28/2008 12:49:24 AM PDT by mkjessup
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To: NOBAMA in 08

Do you work for the RNC?


38 posted on 07/28/2008 12:58:53 AM PDT by Fred (The Democrat Party is the Nadir of Nilhilism)
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To: Marcella
Psychologically, when a person starts a sentence with a negative, “I’m not saying (whatever)”, that’s exactly what he/she is saying.

Well, actually, what he said was the truth. He didn't say that Obama was a traitor. But he definitely implied it!

39 posted on 07/28/2008 12:59:20 AM PDT by Mr Ramsbotham (Barack Obama--the first black Jimmy Carter.)
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To: Red Steel

Actions speak louder than words, Steponallofus.


40 posted on 07/28/2008 1:09:42 AM PDT by TigersEye (Drill or get off the Hill. ... call Nancy Pelosi @ 202 - 225 - 0100)
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To: Red Steel
So he made the decision that that was the best way to go to get the nomination of his party.

Good, subtle slap against the Democratic party...

41 posted on 07/28/2008 1:20:37 AM PDT by 17th Miss Regt
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To: Red Steel

I saw that exchange and was struck by the fact that McCain uttered not a single Obama-style uh, uh, uh, er, um, um, uh.


42 posted on 07/28/2008 1:49:01 AM PDT by Salvey
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To: Red Steel
“Senator Obama would rather lose a war in order to win a political campaign.”

McCain should think about how the press is freaking out over this statement.

The truth hurts, and this definitely resonates with the public, because they see he made the speech with fawning Germans, and went to an exercise photo-op, but couldn't stop off and visit the soldiers--which could have gotten him MORE publicity if he did so WITHOUT the press attending.

43 posted on 07/28/2008 1:49:59 AM PDT by Darkwolf377 (American secret agent in enemy territory (Cambridge, MA))
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To: Red Steel

Most of the Dems want to lose the war ...whats the big deal?


44 posted on 07/28/2008 1:52:46 AM PDT by woofie
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To: Fred
We Think that You are Treading in Deep Water. Do not Mess with US.

just weird. lol

45 posted on 07/28/2008 1:54:20 AM PDT by endthematrix (Congress, Get Off Your Gas, And Drill!)
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To: NOBAMA in 08
Welcome to FR! You'd get a laugh out of how many FReepers we have with "anti-Gore" aliases still floating around here from 2k...
46 posted on 07/28/2008 1:58:20 AM PDT by Caipirabob (Communists... Socialists... Democrats...Traitors... Who can tell the difference?)
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To: Ben Reyes

‘To anger a conservative, tell a lie;
To anger a liberal, tell the truth.’

My new tag line! Thanks!


47 posted on 07/28/2008 2:03:22 AM PDT by Islander7 ("Show me an honest politician and I will show you a case of mistaken identity.")
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To: Red Steel

Hey, Georgie, you Clinton-whore, I would also the same thing of your former boss: Bill Clinton would rather lose a war than his own political campaign, just as he’d rather let Osama Bin Laden go free than inconvenience himself while he’s chasing interns around the Oval Office.

Of course, wag-the-dog style, Bill Clinton would also fight a war or launch a slew of cruise missiles if he thought it could be of benefit to his own political standing, as when he needed sudden distractions from his 1998 politcal cesspool in both Aug. (Sudan and Afghanistan attacks) and Dec. (bombings of Iraq). While both situations called for a strong military response, the Clintonistas chose merely a showmanship type of response designed to distract attention while accomplishing far too little on the military front.

But it’s OK, Georgie, we know you were long gone from the WH, by that point, into your illustrious (and well paid) career as a media whore. From Clintonista whore to media whore — that’s one hell of a 2-stage career you’ve managed for yourself, Georgie.


48 posted on 07/28/2008 2:04:49 AM PDT by Enchante (Only an idiot like Obambi goes to GERMANY to apologize for unwarranted (sic) aggression!)
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To: Red Steel

Nothing would be more satisfying than to have McCain win the election and then cut off all access by these so-called reporters, as well as their networks and newspapers. The lowest rung in hell is reserved for these lying vipers.


49 posted on 07/28/2008 2:08:17 AM PDT by giotto
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To: Vince Ferrer
He has only promised to end the war.

He has only promised to withdraw our forces.

This does not end the war. It makes the enemy stronger in the war - which will continue in Iraq - even if our forces withdraw. War will continue until one side achieves victory.

This distinction must be made: US Withdrawal ≠ End of War

50 posted on 07/28/2008 2:15:52 AM PDT by D-fendr (Deus non alligatur sacramentis sed nos alligamur.)
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