Gabbard hits back at Meghan McCain after fight over Assad

Rep. Tulsi GabbardTulsi GabbardKlobuchar: Race, gender should not be litmus tests for 2020 Dem nominee O'Rourke: 'It would be very difficult not to select a woman' as running mate Schultz apologizes to Dem candidates for military comments MORE (D-Hawaii) fired back at ABC's Meghan McCain as someone "clamoring for regime change wars" on Friday, just two days after a contentious exchange on "The View" that included the co-host calling the 2020 presidential hopeful "an Assad apologist." 

Gabbard, an Iraq war veteran who officially announced her White House candidacy last month, took her ire toward McCain to Twitter after the debate between the two regarding Gabbard's controversial 2017 meeting with Syrian President Bashar Assad went viral.

Gabbard also quoted McCain's late father, Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainCNN anchor hits Trump: He didn't go to Vietnam 'until he was in his 70s' with 'Secret Service protection' Trump reignites criticism of McCain months after senator's death Graham defends McCain amid Trump attacks: 'Nothing about his service will ever be changed' MORE (R-Ariz.), to make her point around avoiding war in the Middle East moving forward based on "its cost in lives and treasure and security."

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During an appearance on Wednesday's "The View," McCain forcefully questioned Gabbard on why she would meet with Assad.

"You have said that the Syrian president, Assad, is not the enemy of the United States,” McCain said. “Yet he’s used chemical weapons against his own people 300 times, that was a red line with President Obama. That is not our enemy? Thirteen million Syrians have been displaced."

“You’re putting words in my mouth that I’ve never said," Gabbard responded. 

"An enemy of the United States is someone who threatens our safety and our security. There is no disputing the fact that Bashar al-Assad in Syria is a brutal dictator," the congresswoman continued. "There’s no disputing the fact that he has used chemical weapons and other weapons against his people."

"This is not something that I’m disputing, nor am I apologizing or defending these actions," Gabbard added. "My point is that the reality we are facing here is that since the United States started waging a covert regime change war in Syria starting in 2011, the lives of the Syrian people have not been improved."