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FLASHBACK: Obama Defense Sec Warned Biden Was Wrong on Every Big Foreign Policy Issue as VP

Joe Biden made his first visit to the Pentagon as Commander-in-Chief on Wednesday alongside Kamala Harris.

Biden and Harris met with newly-appointed Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and other senior military and civilian leadership.

The Democrat leaders held meetings that were closed to the press and public. 

But one member of former President Barack Obama’s team wasn’t too sure how Biden would handle foreign policy issues as Commander-in-Chief.

Robert Gates, the former defense secretary, has previously raised the alarm about Biden’s days in office as Obama’s vice president.

Gates alleged in his memoir that Biden had been “wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades.”

Gates said he stood by that statement when asked about it by Margaret Brennan during a May 2019 interview with CBS’s Face the Nation.

“I think I stand by that statement,” Gates said.

“He and I agreed on some key issues in the Obama administration.

“We disagreed significantly on Afghanistan and some other issues.”

“I think that the vice president had some issues with the military,” Gates continued.

“So how he would get along with the senior military, and what that relationship would be, I just — I think, it — it would depend on the personalities at the time.”

Gates also said that while Biden is easy to like, he questioned how his age might factor into his ability to run the country, saying that older individuals don’t necessarily have the energy or mental acuity required of a president.

TRANSCRIPT:

MARGARET BRENNAN: I was rereading your memoir before we sat down to talk and you said in your memoir, Joe Biden is impossible not to like.

Quote: “He’s a man of integrity, incapable of hiding what he really thinks, and one of those rare people you know you could turn to for help in a personal crisis. Still, I think he’s been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades.”

Would he be an effective commander-in-chief?

ROBERT GATES: I– I don’t know. I don’t know. I– I think I stand by that statement. He and I agreed on some key issues in the Obama administration. We disagreed significantly on Afghanistan and some other issues. I think that the vice president had some issues with the military. So how he would get along with the senior military, and what that relationship would be, I just– I think, it– it would depend on the personalities at the time.

MARGARET BRENNAN: He’s a peer of yours. Does that mean you’re older?

ROBERT GATES: Yes.

MARGARET BRENNAN: You think he’s right for this moment?

ROBERT GATES: I think I’m pretty busy and pretty active but I think– I think having a President who is somebody our age or older, in the case of Senator Sanders, is- I think it’s problematic. I think that you don’t have the kind of energy that I think is required to be President. I think– I’m not sure you have the intellectual acuity that you might have had in your sixties. So, I mean it’s just a personal view. For me, the thought of taking on those responsibilities at this point in my life would be pretty daunting.


Watch the full interview:

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