In an interview today with the website Big Think, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid called John McCain a "flawed candidate," and attacked his much-heralded bipartisan reputation as an "illusion."
"He's wrong on the war. He's wrong on the economy," McCain said. "Everyone knows about his temper, his inability to get along with people."
Reid avoided playing favorites between the two Democrats currently in the race, praising both as intelligent and calling them "equally qualified." Instead, he continued to poke at the belief that McCain truly embodies his maverick label.
I think this illusion that he's a great bipartisan is without much foundation. He worked with Russ Feingold on campaign finance reform. That's nice. He's reached across the aisle on a couple of occasions, but that's a couple of occasions. He supports the president on all of his crazy economic policies. He has supported the president on this war, the worst foreign policy blunder in the history of the country.
Asked if McCain presidency would be a mandate to continue the Iraq war, Reid dismissed the idea. "We have lost going on 4100 Americans, tens of thousands wounded, a third of them grievously wounded... I can't imagine the American people endorsing this war."
Reid spoke positively about his efforts to oppose the war as majority leader, placing blame on an "ever so thin" majority and Republican obstruction for the lack of a withdrawal timeline. Reid also highlighted work done by the Congress to up-armor vehicles in Iraq, improve Walter Reid medical center, and increase benefits to veterans.
Ultimately, Reid sounded confident that the current strategy in Congress to end the war will bear fruit following the 2008 election, suggesting "we're competitive in 11 Senate races. Eleven Senate races! I don't know how many we're going to pick up, but wouldn't it be wonderful if my margin were five or six?"