John McCain, who was accused of portraying his primary opponent Mitt Romney as dangerously dovish on Iraq, has now come under fire for depicting potential-general election opponent Barack Obama as recklessly hawkish on Pakistan.
In a morning conference call, Obama foreign-policy adviser Susan Rice accused McCain of “misrepresenting and distorting” an answer Obama gave in a debate last year, in which he said he would be willing to strike at Al Qaeda targets in Pakistan without that country’s permission.
In a speech Tuesday night in Ohio, McCain appeared to refer to Obama when he attacked the “the confused leadership of an inexperienced candidate who once suggested invading our ally, Pakistan.”
In election-night remarks last week, McCain mocked Obama as a narcissist, and Obama did not answer him directly. The quick response to McCain’s comments this week -- including Rice’s insistence that in fact McCain had offered “confused foreign policy leadership” in advocating an invasion of Iraq and joking about bombing Iran -- suggested that Obama was ready to treat McCain as an opponent.
No one bothered to reach Hillary Clinton for a comment.