Sen. John McCain took a swipe at presidential rival Sen. Barack Obama at a campaign rally today in Pennsylvania, using the words of Obama's own running mate, Sen. Joe Biden, against him.
Biden, D-Del., speaking at a fundraising event Sunday in Seattle, said if Obama is elected president, he will almost immediately be challenged with an international crisis that will test his strength and character.
“Mark my words,” Biden said, “it will not be six months before the world tests Barack Obama like they did John Kennedy.”
Biden said the world is trying to figure out who the 47-year-old senator from Illinois is and how he will deal with an international crisis of epic proportions.
“Watch — we’re gonna have an international crisis, a generated crisis, to test the mettle of this guy,” Biden assured. “I don’t know what the decision is going to be, but I promise you it will occur. As a student of history, and having served with seven presidents, I guarantee you it is going to happen.”
McCain, however, said at today's campaign event in Harrisburg that the U.S. cannot afford to elect an untested president.
“The next president won’t have time to get used to the office,” McCain said. “We face many challenges here at home, and many enemies abroad in this dangerous world.
"Senator Biden guaranteed that if Senator Obama is elected, we will have an international crisis to test America’s new president," McCain continued. "We don’t want a president who invites testing from the world at a time when our economy is in crisis and Americans are already fighting in two wars.
“What is more troubling is that Senator Biden told their campaign donors that when that crisis hits, they would have to stand with them because it wouldn’t be apparent Senator Obama would have the right response. Forget apparent.
"Senator Obama won’t have the right response, and we know that because we’ve seen the wrong response from him over and over during this campaign. He opposed the surge strategy that is bringing us victory in Iraq and will bring us victory in Afghanistan. He said he would sit down unconditionally with the world’s worst dictators. When Russia invaded Georgia, Senator Obama said the invaded country should show restraint," McCain said.
“We cannot spend the next four years as we have spent much of the last eight: hoping for our luck to change at home and abroad. We have to act. We need a new direction, and we have to fight for it.”
Biden also made similar remarks about Obama being tested in the first six months of his administration at a San Francisco fundraiser last weekend, ABC News reported.
“We’re going to face a major international challenge,” Biden said. “They’re going to want to test him, just like they did young John Kennedy . . . and they’re going to find out this guy’s got steel in his spine.” Biden said.
Biden spokesman David Wade told Fox News, “Sen. Biden was making it clear that history has shown presidents face challenges starting on day one, and with our nation fighting two wars and 21st century threats abroad, we know that we need steady leadership in tumultuous times, not the erratic lurching and stubborn ideology of John McCain.”
Earlier this summer, Sen. Joe Lieberman also warned that the United States will likely face a terrorist attack in 2009 and feels Republican presidential candidate John McCain will be better prepared to handle the attack than Obama.
"Our enemies will test the new president early,” Lieberman said during a June interview on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
“Remember — the truck bombing of the World Trade Center happened in the first year of the Clinton administration, and 9/11 happened in the first year of the Bush administration," he noted, saying McCain “knows the world. He's been tested, and he's ready to protect the security of the American people."
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