The Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad is one of my favorite European newspapers and I read it religiously.
However, I did not read today’s edition and if I had not checked the internet, I would have missed one of the most interesting and candid interviews that a foreign newspaper has conducted with one of our politicians recently.
The Handelsblad’s Tom-Jan Meeus conducted a wide-ranging interview with former Republican Congressman Tom Tancredo in Colorado.
To whet our interest, the article in the Handelsblad starts:
Former Republican congressman Tom Tancredo was the opening speaker at the recent Tea Party conference with Sarah Palin. In an interview with NRC Handelsblad, he spoke his mind about Palin. “I really don’t have this feeling about her as being presidential.’’ He referred to John McCain as a “nasty, mean’’ and “peculiarly unstable’’ man. Moreover, Tancredo pointed to a possible personal embarrassment: if Tea Party activists would find out he actually voted for the bailout of the financial sector in 2008, he concedes he would loose his credibility.
And Tancredo does have a lot to say about Mrs. Palin.
For example, discussing the fact that Palin will be campaigning against J.D. Hayworth, a friend of Tancredo:
Meeus: She has to do this to rise in the party ranks?
Tancredo: “I think so.’’
So she is just as much an unprincipled politician as all the rest of them?
“To a large extent.’’
And you still love her?
“I didn’t say that!’’
Well, in your Tea Party speech you pointed out that she could finally say all those wonderful things now she’s free from McCain.
“I said: ‘Now she can tell it like it is.’ And she chooses not to.’’
So at the end of the day you are not that fond of her?
“You are right. I was much fonder of her before she chose to get involved in the McCain thing. She didn’t have to do it.’’
The interview also covers what Meeus calls Tancredo’s loathing for McCain:
I don’t like him…He is not a very pleasant person. He is nasty, mean; the skin of an onion would look deep compared to his. He has a short fuse, he is almost peculiarly unstable.
In answer to Meeus’ question as to what kind of president McCain would have been: “A terrible president.’’
Tancredo also has some choice words for President Obama: The predictable socialism—Tancredo would prefer “euro socialism”— Marxist influences, government takeover topics, while still maintaining that the purchase of toxic assets for 700 billion dollar, for which he voted, is not socialism.
Read more on this fascinating interview here.
The author is a retired U.S. Air Force officer and a writer.