Even after his sex scandal, retired Gen. David Petraeus remained a celebrated figure among Republican policymakers. It wasn’t too long ago that Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), for example, called on President Obama to fire his entire national security team and replace them with Petraeus.
For those who’ve forgotten, Petraeus was a four-star Army general who led U.S. forces in Iraq during the 2007 surge. In 2010, Obama put him in charge of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, and a year later, the president put Petraeus in charge of the CIA, before an affair forced him out.
But given that his credibility on matters of national security remains intact among many GOP lawmakers, it’s worth noting that Petraeus seems to disagree with the Republicans who like him so much. The Associated Press reported yesterday, for example:
A bipartisan group of former top Republican and Democratic officials is backing the program to resettle Syrian and Iraqi refugees in the United States.In a letter to all members of Congress, national security experts, retired military and others say the country must offer refuge to the world’s most vulnerable, regardless of religion or nationality.
Among those signing the letter are former secretaries of state from Democratic and Republican administrations – Henry Kissinger, George Shultz, Madeleine Albright – as well as Petraeus.
This came a week after Petraeus argued against sending American ground forces into Syria, even as many Republican lawmakers and presidential candidates make the opposite case.
What’s more, as we talked about last year, Petraeus is also at odds with Republicans over an increased U.S. military presence in Iraq, cutting deals with the Taliban, closing the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, and the right’s Benghazi conspiracy theories.
Maybe Republicans should find a new hero? Whatever Petraeus’ partisan or ideological beliefs, he seems to be siding with President Obama an awful lot on the questions that matter most to the GOP.