July 22nd, 2008
12:07 PM ET
10 years ago

McCain camp hammers Obama press conference


Watch McCain slam Obama on Iraq.

(CNN) - After Barack Obama spoke out against the surge again Tuesday, John McCain's campaign responded by repeating athe charge that the Illinois senator favors “unconditional withdrawal.”

Earlier: Obama: Stability in hands of Iraqis

“By continuing his opposition to the surge strategy long after it has proven successful and by admitting that his plan for withdrawal places him at odds with General David Patraeus, Barack Obama has made clear that his goal remains unconditional withdrawal rather than securing the victory our troops have earned and the surge has made possible," McCain spokesman Tucker Bounds said.

The McCain campaign is also conducting a conference call with Rep. Heather Wilson, Sen. Sam Brownback, and McCain adviser Randy Scheunemann to keep up the pressure on Obama.

Listen: McCain surrogates target Obama over his Iraq policy

UPDATE: McCain himself also took a swipe at Obama over his Iraq policy at a New Hampshire town hall Tuesday.

"You might recall that Senator Obama, my opponent, said the surge would not succeed, that he wanted us out. If he had his way, we'd been out last March. .. We would have had defeat," he said. "And my friends, that would have been a catastrophe for the United States of America. He was wrong then, he's wrong now and he still failed to acknowledge that the surge succeeded ... remarkable, remarkable. "

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (275 Responses)
  1. John

    The McCain campaign and republicans want to repeat "Obama's withdrawal plan was unconditional" as many times as possible in hopes that if they repeat it enough, it will be true.

    But it's wrong!! Obama has always said that we wants a troop redeployment that is 'as careful getting out as we were careless getting in"... 1-2 brigades per month, dependant on the safety of our troops and little to no resurgence of violence.


    Truth 2008

    July 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  2. Chris

    “proven successful" – so we can leave then if it was "successful". I do believe the surge just pushed them into other countries... are we going to police every country in the world?

    "withdrawal places him at odds with General David Patraeus" – does Patraeus set the genda for the USA??? Patraeus is a general, he has no incentive to withdraw and doesn't meet with global leaders like the POTUS does.

    "victory our troops have earned" – like the NY Times said, please explain what conditions constitute a "victory"

    war war war surge surge surge = McCain

    July 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  3. James

    This is silly. There has never been a point where the words "unconditional withdrawal" have ever left Obama's mouth or his advocates. He has openly discussed and complemented our men and women in uniform for the success of their hard work in the surge. This is a blatent continuation of the Bush/Chaney doctrine of if you just keep saying it, that will make it true. When the reality is that only the die hard republicans who don't get their info from any other source and are not open to any other sources will continue to parrot what they say.

    The McCain camp wants to be foriegn occupiers of a nation. You can only be an occupier if you stay when the country has told you to leave. And McCain's statements continue to ignore and purposely not mention the statements by the Iraqi government officials.

    Shameful. Deceptive. Political.

    July 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  4. Mel


    July 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  5. Lesley

    McCain would serve himself better if he adopted a different campaign strategy, this one isn't "succeeding." No matter what the message is, repeating it over and over again is going to turn people off. Brainwashing won't work in this election, not a third time. Now that Obama is making points abroad and talking about his strategies, I would like to hear something more substantive from McCain.

    July 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  6. anonymous

    Should wake up the NOBAMA fools but they can't see the forest for the trees. NOBAMA is a royal fool and should not have been allowed to go abroad, much less meet with those people. If he jeopardizes the lives of our service men and women, shame on the selfish, elitist, fool. He will place his own "glory" before anyone. I find it hard to believe all the "rock star" fans can't figure that out.

    July 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  7. Kim, Charlotte, NC

    Obama, you are going to give McCain a heart attack if you don't agree with him. Please agree with him so that he can sit down some where and shut-up!

    July 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  8. Jamal kansas

    Mcbush is warmonger the Killing in Iraq has eased only because we are paying the militants that were attacking us then to not attack us now it also have to do with the troop level but if The iraq want to bomb they will bomb no matter how many troops we put in there it is there own reasons finacial and otherwise why they have not been as aggressive

    July 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  9. The Bottom LINE


    WAKE UP PPL.......

    July 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  10. My middle name is Hussein

    Maybe at the convention, Hillary will win the nomination by popular demand.

    The superdelegates can still rally behind the true leader... so can the pledged delegates.

    The people don't want Obama.

    The left wing and the media... loud as they are... are NOT the majority.

    July 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  11. Maggie Muggins From Selwyn

    People looking to make President George W. Bush appear as a good leader of America should make sure they get out and vote for John McCain in November.

    I didn't think it would be possible but the fact is by electing John McCain as president is the only way you can make George W. Bush look like a genius.

    July 22, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  12. ali

    what is your definition of victory?bush claimed victory in 2003.victory would have benn finding all the wmds saddam didnt have.what is victory?is victory mean staying there with targets on our backs ,forever?people like mccain got us into this mess and he still has no plan to get out.let's just flush our entire country down the drain,so that iraq can be free.free from what?

    July 22, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  13. JA Cook

    McCain is nothing more than a whiner of late.

    The McCain campaign is a campaign of whiners.

    July 22, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  14. Ian

    Is McCain referring to the surge of money we supplied the terrorists to stop fighting?

    July 22, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  15. Brian

    I guess that instead of proposing solutions, McSame thinks he can just throw stones at Obama? Good luck with that strategy, old man.

    The tides have turned. Change is coming.

    OBAMA '08!!!

    July 22, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  16. Sweetie

    Obama is a prime example of self will gone amuck!

    He is not a viable candidate.

    I really shutter at the thought that he is even running for office...

    Let alone what this flip flopping Left Wing Nut Job in Training Pants will do if he is elected. SCARY!

    McCain 08

    July 22, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  17. Jack

    AM I the only one who thinks CNN is trying to make up for everyone else loving Obama? All I see here anymore are "McCain Slams Obama, Devastates Obama Clobbers Obama, Obama takes a beating" etc. And yet, it's not the case in reality.

    One reporter and one photog showing up as McCain's plane lands yesterday? HAHAHAH! Yeah, he's drubbing Obama soooo hard.

    July 22, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  18. Moe, NY

    Just what victory is McCain talking about...as I write this blog, the war rages on....it is not over as our troops are still in Iraq. Even Iraq wants us out of Iraq...what is it that McCain doesn't grasp about this situation? Iraq does not want to be occupied any longer by a foreign entity. I agree with Obama....Afghan is where we should be focusing, and should have been focusing all along. Remember Osma anyone?

    July 22, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  19. Walt Doering

    Sen. McCain and his Republican campaign are truly desparate and losing it. Once again they distort by saying Obama favors "unconditional withdrawal" from Iraq. When will they learn to listen? And how can we afford to have a person in the White House who doesn't listen? Plus when will they become literate enough to analyze and dissect information so they can discern the complexities of problems and the need for comprehensive solutions?

    Because McCain and his colleagues can only provide sound bites and no substance or the samo-samo of the Bush policies, all they do is blame, blame blame, attack, attack, attack, and criticize, criticize, criticize Obama over and over again without offering substantive proposals which will not allow us to stay in Iraq but rather leave responsibly so we can focus our attention and resources in Afghanistan were the terrorists are really at. And all this while McCain poses as a person of principle and high moral ground. What hogwash!

    July 22, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  20. no no no!

    if McCain could come up with anything other than attacking Obama may be he might seem more interesting. the fact is every leader has come to Obama's way of thinking...from Iraq to Iran. now that is a man who knows what he is doing, for America and the world....he is making a great leader already

    July 22, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  21. Anita

    McCain is trying to keep in the spotlight since Obama is out of the country and is receiving more publicity. Obama may have voted against the "surge" if this is the story yet has everyone forgotten Obama voted against the "war" in the first place and McCain voted for it.

    July 22, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  22. Rita

    "Aint nothing but the real thing baby".

    Obama stands for honor and decency, and that's why we will put him in the White House.

    Obama 08

    July 22, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  23. David Goldman for OBAMA







    July 22, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  24. mollygonz

    I love how the McSame campaign keeps putting words in Obama's mouth about Iraq...like "lose" and "defeat". We keep hearing the same garbage over and over coming out of that pathetic campaign.

    July 22, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  25. Ex-Republican for Obama

    We can not win an ILLEGAL war. To attempt to, or campaign for, is demonic and criminal. When a murderer gets more help, do you applaud them for the crime working despite that its a crime?

    Our brave men and women of the military are forced by what these politicians tell them to do. We need a president that does not tell them to fight an illegal war.

    July 22, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
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