Buchanan clarified that extramarital affairs historically haven’t automatically disqualified candidates from consideration for sensitive jobs. He said he believed the White House had knowledge of Petraeus’ affair prior to his appointment as head of the CIA.
“There’s another issue here,” Buchanan said. I’ve had to undergo full field FBI investigation when I went into the Nixon White House. It was done — they went back into your college and everything else. That full field investigation, the results went straight to the White House chief of staff. Now, if the CIA investigated its own new director and did not discover this affair in Afghanistan, they ought to all be fired. And if they did discover this, who did they send the report to? Did the White House know that — did they say, look, OK, he had a problem over there. He had an affair. Don’t worry about it. It’s over? That’s what it sounds like to me.”
“Well, I mean, all right,” he continued. “That raises again the question. Did the CIA investigation of Petraeus miss this affair? Because you got an affair like that of a general over there at Bagram or somewhere, that’s all over the place. He had an affair EOB, it’s all over the building. They’re not a big secret. Exactly. And my guess is that the people that got the information says, OK, he had this little affair. I mean, [Dwight] Eisenhower had one, [Douglas] MacArthur had one when he was chairman of the Joint Chiefs, Gen. [George] Patton.”