Heart-ache: McCain uses Petraeus photo in fundraising solicitation

posted at 2:56 pm on May 30, 2008 by Allahpundit

I don’t get the outrage. This is General “Betray Us” we’re talking about, an “ass-kissing little chickensh*t” allegedly according to the left’s favorite military commander, the man “pimped” to the public to defend Bush’s war, a man whose sworn testimony isn’t worthy of belief (or a vote of support) from a top presidential candidate, whose reports of progress in Iraq are so incredible that the likely Democratic nominee hasn’t even bothered to meet with him privately. Why, McCain’s practically doing Obama a favor by using a photo of him, isn’t he?

On Monday, Memorial Day, Joint Chiefs Chairman Admiral Mike Mullen wrote an open letter to troops in uniform that “the U.S. military must remain apolitical at all times. It is and must always be a neutral instrument of the state, no matter which party holds sway.”

“The only things we should be wearing on our sleeves are our military insignia,” Mullen wrote.

Three days later, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz, sent a fundraising solicitation using an image of him and Gen. David Petraeus…

Presumably the McCain campaign did not ask Petraeus’ permission to use the picture. Do you think it’s at all contrary to Mullen’s message to use the photo of McCain and Petraeus in a fundraising solicitation?

Petraeus’s spokesman confirmed that he didn’t approve McCain’s use of the photo and isn’t endorsing either candidate — but follow the link to ABC and read Tapper’s last update for the punchline. The whole point of Obama’s increasingly likely trip to Iraq is to practice the commander-in-chief variation of his looking-off-into-future pose alongside U.S. soldiers while press pool photographers snap away. Those photos may not end up on his website, but the point and effect are the same. Exit statistic: Barring any major attacks tomorrow, knock wood, May 2008 will have seen the fewest monthly U.S. deaths in Iraq since the beginning of the war.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

I don’t get the outrage.

I don’t either.

Three days later, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz, sent a fundraising solicitation using an image of him and Gen. David Petraeus.
*PHOTO OF MCCAIN REACHING TO SHAKE THE HAND OF THE GENERAL*
“Leadership Demonstrated”

It doesn’t look like McCain is claiming that Petraeus is endorsing him. Candidates use photos from news events all the time.

UPDATE 2: McCain campaign spokesman Brian Rogers says using the image of Petraeus is not at all contrary to the spirit of Mullen’s directive. “We’re not suggesting General Petraeus has endorsed anyone in this race. I’m sure you’ll find (attached is one example) that Senator Obama has used pictures of himself with troops in the course of this campaign.”

http://www.barackobama.com/issues/iraq/

This should put to rest any suggestion that the McCain Petraeus photo is anything out of the ordinary.

wise_man on May 30, 2008 at 3:01 PM

I am outraged that the photo contains and image of Teddy Kennedy!

HotJavaJack on May 30, 2008 at 3:03 PM

I pray the death toll continues to be very, very low for our military. Sorry, I don’t see any problem with the picture. If bho goes to Iraq you can bet your sweet bippy every picture of him with our military will be posted in video and on his site to show how ‘pro military’ he is even if the military person doesn’t feel warm and fuzzy about bho.
L

letget on May 30, 2008 at 3:03 PM

The whole point of Obama’s increasingly likely trip to Iraq is to practice the commander-in-chief variation of his looking-off-into-future pose alongside U.S. soldiers while press pool photographers snap away.

Well, if Obama’s so upset, couldn’t he just use a photo of himself with the General in his own fundraising literature? Wouldn’t that make everything even? Oh, wait…

Big S on May 30, 2008 at 3:03 PM

Kennedy is in the pic. Why doesn’t Obama/DNC use it in their own ad?

JiangxiDad on May 30, 2008 at 3:07 PM

Republicans raise money with pictures of the candidate shaking hands with heroes of America.

Democrats raise money with pictures of the candidate shaking hands with enemies of America.

I see the difference, and I’m a moron.

Rhinoboy on May 30, 2008 at 3:08 PM

Aren’t Obama and Hillary Clinton on the Senate Armed Services Committee? They could have easily shaken hands with Petraeus and had a fawning press snap the picture. But they would have had to suspend disbelief and at least pretend to be civil with Petraeus, which they cannot bring themselves to do.

Whereas that comes naturally for McCain, who sees Petraeus as a brother in arms.

Steve Z on May 30, 2008 at 3:13 PM

Well, as uniformed member of the military myself, I’m against candidates of any stripe using uniformed personnel – with consent or without – as part of a political campaign. The military is and must remain apolitical and putting a famous officer on partisan campaign material politicizes the military in the eyes of the public regardless of what the intent actually was. Both candidates need to keep the military out of their partisan fights and both parties are guilty, IMO, of attempting to use the military for their own political ends.

NPP on May 30, 2008 at 3:16 PM

It’s true that Obama would use such a photo op by allowing the news media to disseminate the pictures rather than by doing so himself. However, that doesn’t make it right. Sen. McCain can get his point across without using a photo that includes Gen. Petraeus.

1) We need to keep the military out of the Washington food fight as much as possible. Neither side should use the military for political purposes.

2) It puts Gen. Petraeus in an awkward position. He can’t get involved in politics, we don’t know what his true beliefs on politics are, and if Sen. Obama actually wins the election (ugh) it could cause strain with his new boss.

Yes, the Democrats do this sort of stuff all the time. That’s why we’re not on that team.

Jill1066 on May 30, 2008 at 3:17 PM

Obama can even the score by posing with General Electric.

fogw on May 30, 2008 at 3:20 PM

NPP on May 30, 2008 at 3:16 PM

BINGO!

McCain should not have used this picture without the General’s permision.

A picture is worth a thousand words… especialy if people see the picture, but not the Gen. Spokesmans words denying any connection.

Its the EXACT same thing as we blasted Pelosi et al for in going to Syria… its the appearance, and the McCain camp is using it….

Bad on ya McCain.

Romeo13 on May 30, 2008 at 3:22 PM

looking-off-into-future pose

This is a meme that originated from bannination.

ninjapirate on May 30, 2008 at 3:24 PM

Well, as uniformed member of the military myself, I’m against candidates of any stripe using uniformed personnel – with consent or without – as part of a political campaign. The military is and must remain apolitical and putting a famous officer on partisan campaign material politicizes the military in the eyes of the public regardless of what the intent actually was. Both candidates need to keep the military out of their partisan fights and both parties are guilty, IMO, of attempting to use the military for their own political ends.

NPP on May 30, 2008 at 3:16 PM

I disagree. McCain is using this photo to illustrate that he supports the mission in Iraq and its commander, not the other way around. He’s not using the military for his own political ends, he’s aligning his policies with the current state of our military involvement in Iraq and asking voters to support him. Like it or not, Petraeus is the face of the military and its mission in Iraq.

Big S on May 30, 2008 at 3:26 PM

Will any hard-copy photo of Obama posing with the troops spontaneously combust? Will such an image fry your hard drive? That’s what I’m thinking because even the idea of such a photo-op seems almost sacrilegious to me. Let me see if one already exists…

baldilocks on May 30, 2008 at 3:26 PM

Here’s one. Yeesh.

baldilocks on May 30, 2008 at 3:27 PM

Obama is free to do the same… well, he could if he weren’t more eager to meet with our enemies than our own generals.

Hollowpoint on May 30, 2008 at 3:32 PM

It’s McCain shaking hands with the General, it’s a news photo, big deal.
So now he has to have all photos qualified thru the MSM? And as someone pointed out, that is Ted K. in the picture (must have been a wide angle lens), is Ted K. now in trouble?

right2bright on May 30, 2008 at 3:34 PM

Big S on May 30, 2008 at 3:26 PM

Key question… should McCain use a Picture in a political ad, that the Gen. himself could not give his permission to use in a political ad?

If the Gen. put this out himself, he would be making a political statement in UNIFORM, which is a no no.

Romeo13 on May 30, 2008 at 3:34 PM

Here’s one. Yeesh.

baldilocks on May 30, 2008 at 3:27 PM

Why does that photo give me the creeps?

right2bright on May 30, 2008 at 3:34 PM

I am outraged that McCain’s incompetence cooties may rub off on the right hand of Petraeus.

Valiant on May 30, 2008 at 3:34 PM

Didn’t I see a photos of Obama with an AK-47 in the background?

Akzed on May 30, 2008 at 3:36 PM

Since he’s the guy responsible for dragging the Bushies kicking and screaming to add more troops and a new strategy, nothing to see here. He should get the photo op, he earned it.

THE CHOSEN ONE on May 30, 2008 at 3:36 PM

They are brothers.

tomas on May 30, 2008 at 3:37 PM

In fact, every photos I see of Obama, there’s an AK in the background, either that or he’s shooting one.

Akzed on May 30, 2008 at 3:38 PM

Oh wait…

Akzed on May 30, 2008 at 3:38 PM

right2bright on May 30, 2008 at 3:34 PM

You’re not alone in that.

baldilocks on May 30, 2008 at 3:40 PM

I am outraged that the photo contains and image of Teddy Kennedy!

I’m more outraged that they Photoshopped out that Teddy was plunging a knife into Petraeus’ back….

Master Shake on May 30, 2008 at 3:43 PM

As an old retired Army man I agree that the military should not be politicized but . . . some flag officers are also public figures and celebrities and their portrayal with prominent political figures is unavoidable and appropriate. Whatever else you may think of senator McCain, he is a great friend of the military. He is also a staunch supporter of our military effort in Iraq and for him to appear with general Patraeus is appropriate and proper. If Obama doesn’t like it let him find himself a general that will appear in a photo with him.

rplat on May 30, 2008 at 3:47 PM

It seems to me that if Obama can use Scott McClellan then McCain should be able to use a picture of himself shaking hands with a general.

Terrye on May 30, 2008 at 3:49 PM

rplat on May 30, 2008 at 3:47 PM

Question, would you give Obama, or Hillary, the same pass on this?

Romeo13 on May 30, 2008 at 3:56 PM

Ted is next in line, the question about to be asked by him?
“General, deaths are way down the past couple of months, is there anyway we could increase those numbers to help Obama?”

right2bright on May 30, 2008 at 4:01 PM

Maverick looks to be showing his support using the pic.

Much ado about nothing.

Hening on May 30, 2008 at 4:05 PM

AllahPundit: Which give me an idea.
Could you once a week post a picture like this, something different like Ted waiting to talk to the General. Leave no caption and let us come up with the captions.
A good way to end the week, some of the posters are really clever, the rest are really sick…

right2bright on May 30, 2008 at 4:06 PM

Perhaps Obama should counter with a photo with Chavez or Castro? Then again maybe he can Photo Shop a picture with The General.

jerseyman on May 30, 2008 at 4:08 PM

I would be upset if it was a photo o0f Gen. Petraeus and Osama Obama. That sniveling crapweasel has done nothing to deserve to shine the general’s boots, much less shake his hand.

McCain earned the right to be there.

MrScribbler on May 30, 2008 at 4:12 PM

Gee, I wonder if Obama will make use of photos of himself in Iraq with soldiers? Will he ask permission?

I think it is great that the repetitious parrot “Brawk” Obama is going to Iraq to check out the progress of the policy that he constantly repeats is a failure, ignoring the complete change over the course of the last two years since he was there. As Charles Krauthammer observed, the press that has to follow him will hopefully notice the progress the surge has made that they have not been reporting.

KW64 on May 30, 2008 at 4:22 PM

Exit statistic: Barring any major attacks tomorrow, knock wood, May 2008 will have seen the fewest monthly U.S. deaths in Iraq since the beginning of the war.

Knocking wood also, don’t expect this factiod to make any pages of our leftest rags, (NYT,Wapo,LAT et all). A homocide bomber murdering innocents sells papers, not he “peace,love,dove” the libs revel in hypocritically.

Rovin on May 30, 2008 at 4:25 PM

Maybe run Patraeus as the #1 and McCain as the Veep? That would be sweet.

Dingbat63 on May 30, 2008 at 4:37 PM

If nothing else, using pictures such as this for campaign solicitations or any other political purpose shows bad taste and is, frankly, rude. It does a few things: 1) puts the Soldiers in the photo in an awkward place, because now the Soldiers are associated with whomever else is in the photo, 2) McCain’s campaign, in essence, is using an argument which appeals to an authority, in this case, the military, which is a fallacy of logic, and 3) personally, I’d like to say, “leave me out of this.”
The fallacy of logic to which I referred is this: with this photo used in such a way, one is meant to infer that McCain has the military’s support, and that due to their support of him and his relationship with the military and its leaders, his ideas must be better than his opponents’. The problem with this line of reasoning is that no matter what his relationship with the military or its leaders is, nothing about that relationship makes him better or more knowledgeable than his opponents. It’s like saying, “see me shaking hands with this great guy? Doesn’t that make me great, too?”
Due to these reasons, he has no right to take an honorable, apolitical organization, such as the military, judges, etc., and use it for political purposes.

Send_Me on May 30, 2008 at 4:41 PM

Exit statistic: Barring any major attacks tomorrow, knock wood, May 2008 will have seen the fewest monthly U.S. deaths in Iraq since the beginning of the war.

Best news all week.

12thman on May 30, 2008 at 4:47 PM

I would be upset if it was a photo o0f Gen. Petraeus and Osama Obama. That sniveling crapweasel has done nothing to deserve to shine the general’s boots, much less shake his hand.

McCain earned the right to be there.

MrScribbler on May 30, 2008 at 4:12 PM

Glad to see the inbred wing of the party being so vocal. There is no justification for linking Senator Barack Obama and terrorist overlord Usama Bin Laden. My bad, there is justification; you’re a *****.

The CIC is the head of our armed forces. If he becomes POTUS, will you still use such language. If so, eff-you in advance.

The Race Card on May 30, 2008 at 5:21 PM

I dont see what the kerfuffle is all about.

All Obama has to do is put up on his website one of the many photos he has taken shaking hands with Gen Grant Petraeus.

Oh wait…

Mike D. on May 30, 2008 at 5:24 PM

McCain is using this photo to illustrate that he supports the mission in Iraq and its commander, not the other way around. He’s not using the military for his own political ends, he’s aligning his policies with the current state of our military involvement in Iraq and asking voters to support him. Like it or not, Petraeus is the face of the military and its mission in Iraq.

Big S on May 30, 2008 at 3:26 PM

gotta agree

funky chicken on May 30, 2008 at 5:27 PM

Oh, and the statement that a general isn’t endorsing anybody is just SOP. It’s not dissing McCain or expressing dismay at the photo or where it is.

funky chicken on May 30, 2008 at 5:28 PM

Whatever else you may think of senator McCain, he is a great friend of the military. He is also a staunch supporter of our military effort in Iraq and for him to appear with general Patraeus is appropriate and proper.

Question, would you give Obama, or Hillary, the same pass on this?

Romeo13 on May 30, 2008 at 3:56 PM

Well, I’m not rplat, but let me take a shot here. Neither Hillary or Obama is a friend to our military. Neither Hillary or Obama has supported the mission in Iraq.

Therefore, the logical answer to your question is “no.”

funky chicken on May 30, 2008 at 5:35 PM

Let’s see. Who wanted the surge? Who is responsible for the success of the surge? Can we get someone to photoshop Ahmadinejad kissing Obama on the cheek?

Connie on May 30, 2008 at 5:42 PM

The Race Card on May 30, 2008 at 5:21 PM

I can’t claim originality in this case. Teddy Kennedy pinned the “Osama Obama” (or was it “Obama Osama?”) name on him long before I did.

The only difference is that I was sober when I typed it.

I will, however, say that Barack Hussein Obama will have to earn my respect, should he become POTUS. He hasn’t come close to starting to do that yet.

MrScribbler on May 30, 2008 at 5:45 PM

He’s not using the military for his own political ends

How do you figure? It was sent out as a “Campaign Solicitation.” How is that not part of “his own political ends?”

he’s aligning his policies with the current state of our military involvement in Iraq

Which has what to do with GEN Patraeus or the American military? Soldiers are concerned with jus in bello, whereas the President is concerned with jus ad bellum. Soldiers are concerned with the tactical, operational, and strategic fight. The President provides the strategic goal, sets policy. If McCain wishes to “align his policies with the current state of our military involvement in Iraq,” then he should stand next to President Bush, not the MNF-I Commander.

“and asking voters to support him”

I rest my case. A General is apolitical, not some pawn to be used to raise money by a politician seeking the Presidency. President Bush shaking hands with Soldiers for pictures is different than McCain doing so. President Bush is the CINC. McCain is not: he’s a legislator seeking the heights of his political ambition, the Presidency.

Send_Me on May 30, 2008 at 5:59 PM

McCain’s practically doing Obama a favor by using a photo of him, isn’t he?

Yes.

freevillage on May 30, 2008 at 6:05 PM

Send_Me on May 30, 2008 at 5:59 PM

Well said.

NPP on May 30, 2008 at 6:14 PM

Obama wants to Meet with terrorist sponsors but wont meet with our generals.

Chakra Hammer on May 30, 2008 at 6:20 PM

Send_Me on May 30, 2008 at 5:59 PM

As I have repeatedly indicated, most “conservatives” here simply hate America, and everything it stands for. Civil control over the military, when the latter is not an independent player but a strict subordinate of the political leadership, is one of those things.

freevillage on May 30, 2008 at 6:24 PM

Three days later, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz, sent a fundraising solicitation using an image of him and Gen. David Petraeus…

Not helpful to General Petraeus, as he has a tough enough job as it is.

MB4 on May 30, 2008 at 6:41 PM

Maybe run Patraeus or Tommy Franks as the #1 and McCain Jeff Sessions as the Veep? and McCain as Ambassedor to Mexico. That would be sweet.

Dingbat63 on May 30, 2008 at 4:37 PM

MB4 on May 30, 2008 at 6:46 PM

most “conservatives” here simply hate America

It’d take a heap more than someone not understanding the proper boundaries concerning civil-military relationships to get me to agree with this statement. Most have merely not thought out the 2nd and 3rd order effects of what they say until someone asks them or calls them on it. It’s a matter of communication and rational argument.

Civil control over the military…is one of those things.

You’re right in attributing this as one of the things for which America stands. It’s rather incredible, really, when one looks closely at the Constitution and considers the “why” behind everything written in it: all the checks and balances, the scope of procedural rules, how individual rights are protected, the utter fairness and incredible vision this document possesses. One has to acknowledge the sheer impressiveness of one 200+ year old document, amended only 27 times, that has governed a country as great as ours.

Send_Me on May 30, 2008 at 6:49 PM

Sessions is wonderful, but we need him desperately right where he is. For now.

Connie on May 30, 2008 at 6:50 PM

Its the EXACT same thing as we blasted Pelosi et al for in going to Syria…

Wait… was this comment perhaps supposed to be on the thread about the alien film?

drunyan8315 on May 30, 2008 at 7:44 PM

Senator McCain just can’t hep hisef…!

First the “Gen.Pet shakey jake” and now this?

“In politics, as in life, when one is in a hole, he or she should stop digging.”

Not Saint Mc!

Where’s Holy Joe when I need him?

J_Gocht on May 30, 2008 at 8:30 PM

Senator McCain admits he knows next to nothing about economics, but; Iraq after all, was supposed to be his “long suit”!

Whoa there… whodah thunk it, yet?

J_Gocht on May 30, 2008 at 8:46 PM

Senator McCain admits he knows next to nothing about economics

J_Gocht on May 30, 2008 at 8:46 PM

#uck you, I know more about economics than anyone else on this blog! By High, sell low. I mean sell more than you buy! I mean make it a hundred! No, No, I mean make it 5! Joe, somebody get me Joe!!!

MB4 on May 31, 2008 at 4:21 AM

Thanks, Joe. Sell Dollars and buy Pesos.
- John “Greenspan” McCain

MB4 on May 31, 2008 at 4:23 AM

J_Gocht on May 30, 2008 at 8:30 PM

J_Gocht on May 30, 2008 at 8:46 PM

Ever think about giving up the alcohol and dope?

The stuff really isn’t good for you.

Chakra Hammer on May 31, 2008 at 5:31 AM

Chakra Hammer on May 31, 2008 at 5:31 AM

Sorry about that CH…it should ah been…
“…hep his[s]ef
and…
“Gen[eral] Pet[raeus’s] shakey jake”

MB4 on May 31, 2008 at 4:21 AM

As for you my fine feathered military soul… I believe you should pay more attention to your guard duty in the street and leave the final planning to those in the know. :)

J_Gocht on May 31, 2008 at 9:05 AM

Thanks, Joe. Sell Dollars and buy Pesos
- John “Greenspan” McCain
MB4 on May 31, 2008 at 4:23 AM

Actually MB4, I think you’ll find that money will start returning to India and its rupee…it will crush the greenback buck unfortunately, in the months ahead. :)

Are you a FOREX trader?

J_Gocht on May 31, 2008 at 9:16 AM

MB4 on May 31, 2008 at 4:21 AM
“…I know more about economics than anyone else on this blog!”

There are some that may take issue with you on that assertion. It appears to me that “unseen” makes some rather fine points with respect to Econ 101. :)

J_Gocht on May 31, 2008 at 9:28 AM

Senator McCain admits he knows next to nothing about economics, but; Iraq after all, was supposed to be his “long suit”!

Whoa there… whodah thunk it, yet?

J_Gocht on May 30, 2008 at 8:46 PM

Just so.

So why can’t the geniuses running Obama’s campaign get him talking about the economy? Why is this campaign so far almost exclusively being waged on McCain’s turf? I’d be pretty pissed off about it if I were a Democrat. McCain has no money, no staff, and an entire media establishment gunning for him, yet he is running rings around Obama so far.

You don’t suppose experience really matters in any of this, now, do you?

rockmom on May 31, 2008 at 12:59 PM

I don’t get the outrage.

Shocker! Considering you were a McCain Moonbat long before the primary process was even over. Time to start making excuses for the cranky old bastard.

The reality is that the military is always warned about “taking sides” at this time in election years. The warning was a little more pointed this year since all the candidates are liberal Democrats who have, at various times, thrown the military under the bus but it is still the same warning.

McCain’s campaign is wrong in using photos of military leaders who are currently serving. General Petraeus can’t endorse anybody because he is in the military but McCain’s propoganda monkeys figured out a way to suggest that he is supporting a guy who spent the first few years of the war in Iraq supporting the troops while attacking the administration. John McCain is a political traitor and coward who doesn’t deserve the endorsement of the troops. For his propoganda machine to suggest otherwise is disgusting.

highhopes on May 31, 2008 at 11:15 PM