McCain's Pick for Middle East Negotiator: Bill Clinton

Highlights from the Sunday talk shows

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 18, 2012 12:18 PM CST

(Newser) – John McCain has an idea for finally negotiating peace in the Middle East: Send in Bill Clinton. "The United States should obviously be as heavily influential as they can," McCain said on CBS's Face the Nation today when asked about the Israel-Gaza conflict. Thus Clinton, "a person of enormous prestige and influence," would be a perfect choice. More from the Sunday talk shows, per Politico:

  • McCain also discussed UN Ambassador Susan Rice and her controversial remarks about the Benghazi attack. "She has a lot of explaining to do," he said, adding that he wants her to publicly state that she was wrong.
  • Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin defended Rice on the same show, calling the attacks against her "fundamentally unfair." And on ABC's This Week, Sen. Carl Levin called it "one of the most unfair attacks I've ever seen in Washington in 34 years." Both pointed out that Rice was using information given her by the intelligence community when she made her initial remarks.
  • But, also on This Week, Rep. Peter King says that doesn't matter. She should have relied on "more than unclassified talking points," he said, since "she had access to all the classified information from the State Department."
  • On Fox News Sunday, Sen. Saxby Chambliss said he thinks Rice will eventually have to testify before Congress.
  • And House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers insisted on NBC's Meet the Press that there was no intelligence failure in the wake of the attack, and that intelligence officials knew right away it was a terrorist operation.
  • Tax rates were also discussed today, with Nancy Pelosi telling This Week that she will reject any fiscal cliff agreement that does not increase tax rates on the rich. On CNN's State of the Union, Durbin noted that Democrats won't back down on higher taxes for those who make $250,000 or more, calling it "a reasonable number."
  • And on Fox News Sunday, Joe Lieberman said he still has "questions" about the David Petraeus scandal and why the FBI did not inform the White House about it earlier. On Meet the Press, Rogers added that he thinks President Obama may have known what was going on before Election Day, though Sen. Dianne Feinstein insisted he did not.

John McCain acknowledges the audience with former President Bill Clinton after delivering remarks at the Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting Thursday, Sept 25, 2008 in New York.
John McCain acknowledges the audience with former President Bill Clinton after delivering remarks at the Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting Thursday, Sept 25, 2008 in New York.   (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)
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