Whether or not President Obama has brought change to Washington, he’s definitely changed the view of the Democratic party when it comes to foreign policy. In 2008, running against American war hero Sen. John McCain, foreign policy was seen as a weakness for the then-freshman Senator Barack Obama. But Buzzfeed’s Michael Hastings, McKay Coppins and Zeke Miller point out that foreign policy was a big weakness for Democrats overall until the last three and a half years. They write that since “Jimmy Carter’s inability to free U.S. hostages in Tehran; Bill Clinton’s draft dodging and non-dope smoking; and finally, John Kerry’s ‘for it before I was against’ stance on the Iraq War their Republican opponents have more or less been able to caricature them as a party of the feckless. Surprisingly, it’s been Obama who has changed this perception.”
This shift in the Democratic party has pushed some Republicans even farther to the right, and their rhetoric has become even more hawkish. During the RNC, the two biggest foreign policy speeches came from former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Senator John McCain, who pushed for greater involvement in Syria and Iran. But that tack to the right may run up against the war-weary American public. The latest Quinnipiac poll found three in five Americans do not believe we should still be involved in Afghanistan.