Rogers: ISIS a 'Plane Ticket Away' From US Attack

Graham: Militants aren't 'the JV team anymore'
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 24, 2014 11:48 AM CDT
Rogers: ISIS a 'Plane Ticket Away' From US Attack
Sen. John McCain speaks at the Arizona Republic, Aug. 21, 2014, in Phoenix.   (AP Photo/The Arizona Republic, Emmanuel Lozano)

Mike Rogers dropped a dire prediction this morning, contending that the Islamic State militants currently rampaging through Iraq "are one plane ticket away from US shores" and that an attack "is a very real threat." Continued the House Intelligence Committee chair: "There’s no mulligans in foreign policy. We need to regroup." John McCain also chimed in, hours after a 6.1-magnitude earthquake rolled through Napa County, trotting out its inevitability as a contrast for the Islamic State: "The president has to understand that America must lead and, when America hasn’t, a lot of bad things happen," said McCain, as per Politico. "This is not like the earthquake in San Francisco. All of this could have been avoided, like leaving a residual behind force in Iraq, and obviously the challenge is now much greater than it would have been." They led a bevy of politicians discussing the militants on the Sunday talk shows:

  • Lindsey Graham: "It's time now to assume the worst about these guys rather than underestimating them—they're not the JV team anymore. They're the most prominent terrorist organization in the world, but they're not the only one. They're in competition with the other jihadist groups, and the gold medal will be awarded to the group that can hit America."
  • Paul Ryan: What I want to hear from our commander in chief is that he has a strategy to finish ISIS off, to defeat ISIS. Let's not forget that there are reportedly thousands of terrorists with foreign passports. If we don't deal with this threat now thoroughly and convincingly, it's going to come home to roost.
  • House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Mike McCaul: The Islamic State "would love more than nothing else to hit the United States of America. They are intent on hitting the West. And there are external operations, I believe, on the way."
  • Kelly Ayotte (senator from James Foley's native New Hampshire): "What I want from [President Barack Obama] is a strategy to defeat ISIS. That's what I think we need to work together on, and he needs to lead this, because the containment aspect of it is not going to defeat them. And we're going to have to defeat them because of the threat that they ... present to us."
(More John McCain stories.)

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