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President Obama, Seize The Moment: McCain For Sec. Defense [UPDATED]

02 December 2014 @ 15:35

M-Joseph-Sheppard-001bxSpecial guest post
by M. Joseph Sheppard

Media reports are stating that Ashton Carter is president Obama’s pick for Defense Secretary to repalce Chuck Hagel.Carter has extensive experience in the national security arena. Before he served as deputy defense secretary from October 2011 to December 2013 he was the Pentagon’s technology and weapons-buying chief for more than two years. But how could that thin resume compare to that of Senator John McCain’s?

“Defense analyst Anthony Cordesman said that as Obama approaches the end of his presidency, the Cabinet post is “not particularly desirable” for anyone with broader political ambitions.’ Why would this not apply more to Senator McCain than someone who is not widely known and might appear as a placeholder and obsequious servant of the admin’s dying days?

There is just so much right, transcendent and utterly historical for president Obama to “seize the moment” and nominate Senator john McCain as the next Secretary of Defense.

Considering the most important reason, if, as has been speculated, the administration has not been happy with departing Secretary Hagel’s, perceived as timid, prosecution of the war, which it is, against ISIS then who better to pursue a vigorous, no holds barred, as long and as much as it takes policy than Senator McCain?

On a political level, neither president Obama nor Senator McCain has anything to lose or to gain. The president will leave office and Senator McCain may or may not run again (and if he runs there are massive rumblings of a challenge from conservatives) and, on consideration finishing his career having defeated a militant enemy would be a grand highlight. It most certainly would be a better end than possibly going down to ignominious defeat in a primary campaign and would be his ultimate “rogue” move.

For President Obama a McCain nomination would see smooth sailing through the confirmation process. It would be unlikely, and frankly unseemly for McCain’s senate colleagues to block his nomination and, as with John Kerry such a long-serving high ranking senator would surely be quickly confirmed. Appointing a Republican would hardly be precedent shaking as McCain’s immediate predecessor is a Republican and many administrations appoint members of the opposing camp to secretary positions.

For President Obama with his eyes turning towards his “legacy moments” reaching across the aisle to an unheard of historic degree of appointing his opponent to such a major role would be one for the ages. If McCain succeeded, a substantial part of the credit would go to the person who put him in the role. If he failed, then the opprobrium for Obama, if there were any, would not be on any comparable level to the failure of a Democrat.

For the Republicans there is no political cost. If McCain were appointed and did not succeed no blame would attach itself to the GOP. If he succeeded then the GOP’s historic image of strong foreign policy managers would be reinforced-a no lose situation. That president Obama would be in receipt of kudos would be of little import as he is not running for re-election and his accomplishments would not necessarily attach themselves the 2016 Democratic nominee.

The GOP would have no worries about losing a senate vote as they have a majority without McCain’s vote. The Republican Governor of Arizona, Jan Brewer would of course be expected to nominate a replacement for McCain under these circumstances and for her to, this might be an historic, legacy moment. In this scenario what better person for her to replace Senator McCain with than the long-term resident of Arizona, Sarah Palin? Palin’s appointment could, under the circumstances, be signalled as a replacement appointment until the seat is up for re-election in 2016 which would assuage the feelings of any Republican who had his or her eye on the seat at that time. For Governor Palin it would give an outstanding platform for a 2016 presidential run unencumbered by having to make a commitment to serving a 6 year term.

Never has an appointment to such a major role had the capacity to give so many an historic legacy. For Obama, McCain, Brewer, and Palin the positives are phenomenal. For the American people and the free world as a positive, for America’s radical enemies as a terrible negative. Opportunities such as this come, perhaps, only once in an administration’s and a presidents lifetime-will President Obama reach out for the brass ring?

Mr. Sheppard is the proprietor of the blogs Point Of View and Palin4President 2016He also writes occasionally for American Thinker and is a man of refined taste.  Follow him on Twitter: @MJosephSheppard.

UPDATE at 2111…

Two new paragraphs inserted at the beginning of this post.


  1. 02 December 2014 @ 15:47 15:47

    Reblogged this on BLOGGING BAD w/Gunny G ~ "CLINGERS of AMERICA!".

  2. 02 December 2014 @ 16:51 16:51

    Good ideas here.

    Sadly, Obummer won’t listen to a word of this.

  3. 03 December 2014 @ 11:40 11:40

    Makes sense, which it why it won’t happen.

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