Hoekstra: Obama 'Doesn't Have Friends Overseas'

Thursday, 31 Oct 2013 07:10 PM

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President Barack Obama is losing support of nations around the world in the wake of the international spying scandal and a perceived lack of leadership, according to former Rep. Pete Hoekstra of Michigan.

"He really doesn't have any friends overseas. Obviously, the Europeans are angry, Israel's angry, the folks in Egypt," Hoekstra told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.

"He's rewritten America's foreign policy, and not very successfully. It's going to take a real rebuilding effort by the next president to re-establish America's presence overseas and make us a power and an influencer again for good and effective policy."

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Hoekstra, former chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, believes Obama's own party is wavering in its support of the commander-in-chief.

"You're going to see the Democrats start bolting from him in Congress very, very soon. They're facing the 2014 elections and they're not going to want to be paired with this president or his record," he said.

"[Former Secretary of State] Hillary Clinton has already left because she's getting ready for 2016. She didn't want to stay any longer."

But Hoekstra added, Obama is still extremely powerful.

"He may be friendless, but he will still be very effective in trying to get done what he wants to get done through his use of executive powers," Hoekstra said.

He said the nation has the appearance of being "rudderless."

"People aren't sure where we're heading. If you don't know where you're going, people start getting nervous. The problem here is there's a lack of leadership," he said.

Hoekstra said not only have the revelations of Edward Snowden — the rogue National Security Agency contractor who bared details of the government's spying programs — rocked the world, but also the nation's toothless response to it.

"Number one, that the NSA ever put America in the position where a single individual, a single analyst could take as much information as Edward Snowden accessed in a few months is unconscionable," he said.

"The second thing is this drip, drip is going to continue and we have no leader who's speaking forcefully, supporting the NSA and its capabilities … A forceful statement should've been right out of the box — 'Hey, there's going to be some uncomfortable things that come out of the Snowden revelations but we do know that friends spy on friends.'''

Hoekstra said it is commonplace that countries spy on each other.

"It happens all of the time. It is one of the unwritten rules of foreign policy. It's done. People just don't talk about it," he said.

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