McCain’s Ahmadinejad ‘Monkey’ Line: ‘Lighten Up, Folks’

Photograph by Borna Ghassemi/AFP via Getty Images

A press conference in Tehran after the return of the capsule carrying this monkey was sent above the Earth’s atmosphere on Jan. 28, 2013.

Sen. John McCain, no fan of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, probably wouldn’t mind the Iranian leader blasting off into the wherever. Nothing there is new. How he said it today, though, has rankled some, including a Republican congressman who called the jibe “racist.”

“So Ahmadinejad wants to be first Iranian in space – wasn’t he just there last week? McCain asked in a Twitter message.
The tweet also included a link to a news article with an “Iran launches monkey into space” headline and a link.

Said monkey was apparently launched upward 75 miles and retrieved alive last week, according to Iranian media. Ahmadinejad was quoted as saying he’d be willing to be the first human launched to space by Iran’s nascent space program. Spokesman Brian Rogers confirmed in an e-mail that the Twitter posting was McCain’s own, saying it “was obviously a joke poking fun at Ahmadinejad’s outer space ambitions, as he made clear in a follow-up tweet 52 minutes later:

 

Michigan’s Republican Rep. Justin Amash didn’t see the humor.

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