A few Hot Air readers seemed a little off-put by Dick Cheney’s contention yesterday that the choice of Sarah Palin for John McCain’s running mate was a “mistake.” Even his own daughter rebuked him yesterday on Twitter:
Rarely do I disagree with best VP ever but @sarahpalinusa more qualified than Obama and Biden combined. Huge respect 4 all she’s done 4 GOP.
— Liz Cheney (@Liz_Cheney) July 29, 2012
How can the former Vice President make amends? How about comparing Barack Obama to Jimmy Carter … unfavorably? Cheney tells Jonathan Karl that there hasn’t been a President with whom he’s disagreed more, including Carter:
Cheney’s harshest criticism, however, was for President Obama.
“I obviously am not a big fan of President Obama. I think he’s been one of our weakest presidents. I just fundamentally disagree with him philosophically. I’d be hard put to find any Democratic president that I’ve disagreed with more,” he said.
When asked if he thought Obama was “worse than Jimmy Carter,” Cheney replied, “Yes.”
Cheney gave Obama credited for killing al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, but added that “a lot of that intelligence that laid the groundwork for what ultimately led to the capture of Bin Laden [was] as a result of programs we had in place in the Bush administration.”
He was sharply critical, however, of Obama’s plans to withdraw troops from Iraq and Afghanistan.
“We should not be running for the exits. We should not be turning our backs on our friends in that part of the world,” he said.
Actually, even with everything Cheney notes above, I’d still give the foreign-policy edge to Obama over Carter. Had Carter taken over from George W. Bush in 2009, we would have not just conducted a pell-mell rush to exit Iraq, we’d have done the same in Afghanistan and killed the drone strikes that have proven very effective. We might also have caved in to the Iranian mullahs on their nukes, and all one needs to remember to reach that conclusion was Carter’s shameful dithering with Iran in 1979 and 1980 after they committed an act of war against the US … for 444 days.
Cheney manages to get one last dig in at Obama, if obliquely. When Karl asks him why he wasn’t more vocal in the same-sex marriage debate, Cheney reminds him that he gave his position in 2000 and never changed it — so why would he need to restate it again? That’s nothing if not a shot at Obama’s “evolutionary” flip-flop in May.