The best is enemy of the good.
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Friday, August 26, 2016
Bush Official Paul Wolfowitz, A Hawk Among Hawks: "I Might Have To Vote For Hillary Clinton"
Paul Wolfowitz 'might have to vote' for Hillary Clinton
Washington (CNN) Former Bush administration official Paul Wolfowitz said he is considering voting for Hillary Clinton in an interview in which he lambasted Donald Trump as dangerous.
Wolfowitz, who was the deputy secretary of defense for President George W. Bush in the lead-up to and start of the Iraq War, said in an interview published Friday that while he isn't enthused about it, he may be forced to vote for Clinton.
"I wish there were somebody I could be comfortable voting for," Wolfowitz told the German publication Der Spiegel. "I might have to vote for Hillary Clinton, even though I have big reservations about her."
In the interview, Wolfowitz repeatedly expressed concerns about Trump, saying he agrees with 50 other former Republican security officials who recently blasted Trump as "dangerous."
"He says he admires Putin, that Saddam Hussein was killing terrorists, that the Chinese were impressive because they were tough on Tiananmen Square. That is pretty disturbing," Wolfowitz said, calling him "unacceptable."
Wolfowitz also called Trump a continuation of President Barack Obama, despite their party differences. Wolfowitz said Obama's apparent "step back" foreign policy would be exaggerated under Trump, calling him "Obama squared."
"The only way you can be comfortable about Trump's foreign policy is to think he doesn't really mean anything he says. That's a pretty uncomfortable place to be in," Wolfowitz said. "Our security depends on having good relationships with our allies. Trump mainly shows contempt for them. And he seems to be unconcerned about the Russian aggression in Ukraine. By doing this he tells them that they can go ahead and do what they are doing. That is dangerous."
Wolfowitz is one of the nation's most prominent neoconservatives and interventionists, and has been widely characterized as the "architect' of the invasion of Iraq. CNN reported back in 2003 that he was the first Bush administration official to push the 43rd president to topple Saddam Hussein -- broaching the subject four days after the September 11 attacks.
Trump has been an ardent critic of the Iraq War on the campaign trail, saying he opposed it from the get-go, although the first evidence of him opposing the invasion of Iraq was after the war had begun. But Clinton voted in favor of the war when she was in the Senate, a fact that her opponents have used against in her both the 2008 and 2016 presidential elections.
The GOP candidate has also criticized Obama and Clinton for pulling troops out of Iraq too quickly and destabilizing the region, though he supported the same policy in CNN interviews during Obama's first term.
Clinton has steadily courted and landed endorsements from Republican elders in foreign policy, arguing that their support shows that Trump's election would endanger the country's security.