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. Beverly, NYC

    Dear John:

    Get a clue, when your own President and the President of Iraq come over to Obama's way of thinking about a withdrawal or time horizon it time to give up the argument. The surge cost 4100 American lives, but that doesn't matter beacause you were "RIGHT" to throw bodies and money at the problem from your ivory towers. Sad and pathetic don't begin to descibe you and Bush. We armed the Sunnis to the teeth to fight the Shia's and the insurgents, hoped we picked the right side and they will be allies when we leave. In 1991 as a Marine in Desert Shield/Storm my unit helped build a tent city for the persecuted Taliban and we know how well that worked out. Face it, we broke it , and didn't fix it.


    July 22, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  2. Robert

    McCain and his negative group of advisors are obviously getting desparate and will do or say anything to discredit Obama. I think they realize that since have no plan as to how to really solve any of this countries problems so they resort to the negative approach. Only this approach proves that they are just a bunch of loosers.
    The pressure is now on McCain and he knows he cannot win against Obama.

    July 22, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  3. Marie

    McCain is starting to look real childish and foolish. He needs to step back (reset) and start talking about his plans and policies and stop throwing spears at Obama. Senator Obama is on the world stage and McCain is throwing spitballs.

    July 22, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  4. Hitler youth for Obama

    Obama has learned that creating and hyping an image works to convince people that you are what the propaganda presents you to be.

    Smart people will not fall for this and it will cost Obama votes.

    The newbies and American idol watchers will crow how great he is and continue to be fooled by the demagogue of the century.

    July 22, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  5. Kathryn Irby - Metairie, LA

    It would seem that McBush is a desperate man these days! If I were in his shoes, I would be too! LOL!

    July 22, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  6. Obama 08 & 12!

    selected not elected – what are you talking about – are we following the same election? Where has Obama flip-flopped? I saw the news conference in Jordan today and he was dead-on on his plan to withdraw in 16 months! Even after meeting the army general. Seriously, you need to read more carefully.

    July 22, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  7. Johnny C.

    Funny how Obama's new 'War Strategy' has somehow morphed from 'get out now' to basically what Bush's Strategy has been all along.

    You libs really don't get it, you are being led round and round and now you are supporting Bush and you don't even know it.

    July 22, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  8. Dr.Mimi De La Cruz for OBAMA







    July 22, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  9. whytheliesmccain

    WOW Jim you must have the best eyesight in the world to make a statement like that. I think it is a US flag pin. What does John McCain stand for? All he does is bash Senator Obama with half truths and lies. NOWHERE did Senator Obama ever say he wants unconditional withdrawal, he has always said we would have a security force in the region and would withdraw carefully. OH and whos plan for Iraq does the Prime Minister of Iraq support? OBAMAS. HMMM maybe he does know something McBush does not.

    July 22, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  10. Tony

    Why is this news?????

    Of course McCain and other republicans are trashing, moaning and whining about everything Obama does.

    That is usually what happens when the candidate has no message or real record to run on. The republican Dictatorship is coming to an end in a few months and they are terrified.

    Get used to and deal with it, it's going to be a long 8 years of a Democrat in the White House and Congress.

    After the damage that has been done to the country, it will take several Democratic presidents to try and undo some of the damage.

    July 22, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  11. DJK

    Obama's position on the surge is more proof that this man isn't qualified to be the commander in chief. How can you be against a working strategy that is making Iraq safer for Iraqis and American soldiers?

    July 22, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  12. fooled the sheople but not the people

    Obama is perfect.

    Obama has spoken.

    The media has listened.

    The sheople have followed.

    Isn't propaganda grand?

    July 22, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  13. Krissy

    McCain has been distorting Obama's position for so long now! Obama has never said his withdrawl would be unconditional, and at the democratic debates he was critiqued for not saying that withdrawl would be regardless of conditions on the ground. McCain is getting desperate.

    In fact, Petraus, the Iraqi PM, The Chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff are all parroting Obama right now. The adminstration has changed positions to mirror Obama on Iran and diplomacy, Pakistan, and now Afghanistan.

    Obama is truly a leader and has accurate long term vision.

    July 22, 2008 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  14. Norma

    This old fool only response to whatever Obama is doing. He talks more about Obama then what his plan is..Keep it up old fool it only make you look desperate.

    July 22, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  15. Safety & Comfort

    I wonder if Liberals' heads will explode when Obama loses in November. The writing is on the wall.

    July 22, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  16. Linda31

    McCain keeps on talking about the surge and his judgement. Also, trying to bully Obama saying that the surge worked. Problem is the war in Iraq was wrong. When McCain admits that then we can talk about the surge. Also, if the surge has worked why do we still have more troops in Iraq. Obama made a great point today. The job of the President is to take the advice of general and others and base on the COMPLETE information that he, the President, has and make decision. Generals are only looking at the war from one point of view, that's their job. The job of the President is to look at all aspects and make the best decision for our country.

    July 22, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  17. J

    I'm getting really sick of McCain saying Obama doesn't want victory in Iraq. He never says what victory means to him!!!! McCain is going to lose this election because all he does is attack Obama and make ridiculous claims about victory in Iraq. McCain always attacks Obama's energy policy too, which is ridiculous. McCain's gas tax holiday is a transparent joke and I can't wait till he's back in the Senate because I'm sick of hearing this old fool speak.

    July 22, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  18. Mark

    Debra, Alton July 22nd, 2008 12:09 pm ET

    McCain…get over it! Nobody wants to continue a war!!!!!!!

    Your are right, absolutely right.

    The only difference between Obama and McCain is the McCain wants to end the war with a victory and Obama wants to end the war in defeat.

    July 22, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  19. Shirley

    Why do we continue to call the Troops increase in IRAQ a SURGE,
    if i remember correctly the Generals in IRAQ were asking for more
    TROOPS and better equipment from the beginning.
    Maybe MCcann and the Bush Admin. think that the American
    people has forgotton about that request.
    If we had more Troops in IRAQ from the start meybe we would
    have save lives in IRAQ.
    Read about..
    Everytime MCcann say the word MYFRIEND, i get the feeling i am
    being LIED TO.

    July 22, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  20. Dan , TX

    Obama is for a safe ending of the war in Iraq, The Iraqis are ready to move on, and we should be too.

    I also want to vote for the person who will give everyone here the biggest tax cut. That's Obama.

    July 22, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  21. poor johnny mack

    Phantom of the Oprah- are you serious??? and johnny mack hasn't look i was in the military and the last thing i would want to tell people is about my being a POW, it's like 50 cent saying i got shot nine times in the war on drugs ok we know for the millionth time sheeesh!!!!

    July 22, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  22. Anne E.

    .....at least Sen. Obama knows:

    – the difference between Sunni/Shia;
    – which country we should've gone after in the first place; and

    If his misstatements, slip-ups, and things he can't recall are indicative of his "experience," then that's EXPERIENCE WE DO NOT NEED.

    July 22, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  23. DflateMacsStr8TalkXpress: Econ MIA, AWOL on facts, POW from reality

    John McCain't was so wrong on everything Middle East including its geography, so the only life preserver he has is the surge, my friends. (Which for those of you who are disconnected from reality – DIDN'T WORK – but that depends on your definition of "work"). Go back in time to the original statements made for the purpose of the surge, and you can figure it out all by yourself without any help from Grampy and all his lying surrogates.

    July 22, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  24. steve

    Looks to me that Iraq is getting it together. We need to move forward and leave to take care of other matters. Its funny that Bush/McCain don't want to leave even after the Iraq PM said he wants a time table for us to leave. 2010 is very possible for us to leave if things continue to play out as they have. McCain is seeing that a first termer African American is making since and he does not want to hear it.

    July 22, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  25. An American

    Nothing is going to change my mind, I am voting for Barack Obama. I am not undecided.

    You know, I don't want four more years of the same direction we have been going. Remember when Bush kept saying we are turning a corner in 2004? Well we have been going around and around the block and the American people are getting hosed.

    The McCain camp is just getting desperate and they are trying to get something to stick. It reminds me of when Bob Dole ran.

    Time for change, sorry McCain, pack up your bags and head for retirement.

    July 22, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
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