CNN contributor Roland Martin, asked about Democrats’ low poll results concerning national security on Friday’s "Election Center" program, answered using his best Barack Obama impression. "...John McCain, you're a war hero. You served. But you also voted for the war that's led to the death of 4,000 Americans. We have spent billions of dollars and, frankly, it has not stabilized the Middle East.... He's [Obama] going to put the cost of the war and how it has not done what it was supposed to on his back and say, you know what? Explain that, Mr. War Hero."
"Election Center" host Campbell Brown, prior to Martin’s answer, played a clip of Senator McCain criticizing Obama’s stance that if the Illinois Senator became President, he "would meet unconditionally with some of the world's worst dictators and state sponsors of terrorists." She then referenced a ABC News/Washington Post poll, conducted May 8-11, in her question to Martin. "Roland, I want to go to a point that we ended on a moment ago with Gloria. John McCain knows national security is the Democrats' weak spot. In a poll this week, McCain beat Obama on the question of who do you trust to deal with terrorism 55 percent to 34 percent. How does Obama begin to make up that gap, when he's running against a war hero?"
Martin’s full answer:
MARTIN: Well, first of all, what he is going to do is, he is going to say, okay, John McCain, you're a war hero. You served. But you also voted for the war that's led to the death of 4,000 Americans. We have spent billions of dollars and, frankly, it has not stabilized the Middle East. He's going to say, you aligned with the Bush administration, who went before Congress and who said, hey, our gas prices are going to go down because of the war in Iraq. We're not going to spend as much money. He's going to put the cost of the war and how it has not done what it was supposed to on his back and say, you know what? Explain that, Mr. War Hero.
Martin made the remark as part of a panel discussion, which included CNN senior political analyst Gloria Borger and former Mitt Romney campaign press secretary Kevin Madden. Later, Madden commented that he was "very struck by how Barack Obama immediately reacted to President Bush's remarks at the Knesset, even though he was never mentioned. There's an old saying in politics that... if you throw a rock over the fence, the dog that barks is the one that you hit."
Madden’s comment provoked Borger to reply, "Kevin, he was clearly talking about Obama," thus continuing CNN’s sensitivity towards President Bush’s "appeasement remark." Brown then asked Borger, "This discussion started when the President made his speech in Israel, saying there is no room for appeasement. And, of course, as Kevin pointed out, the White House is today saying that they don't know what this fuss is all about, that the President wasn't even talking about Obama. You buying it?"
Before the CNN senior political analyst could respond, Martin quipped sarcastically, "Oh, so cute." Borger then voiced her adamance about the President’s remark. "Oh, of course not. Of course not. There is not one word in a President's speech that isn't carefully considered, and they were talking about all Democrats, perhaps, who are now led by Barack Obama, who is the likely presidential nominee. And so, of course they were talking about Barack Obama."