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. Roger from CA

    The commander-in-chief establishes policy. It is the job of the uniformed commander of the forces to implement the policy. Petraeus may feel that a timetable is not a good idea, but the military serves the civilian leadership and the people, NOT the other way around. They've had plenty of time to implement the surge, and either it has worked or it has not. If it is something that cannot be wound down without leading to chaos, then it NEVER WAS A GOOD POLICY!!

    July 22, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  2. Up and Onward

    Barack is a good man and a great American. I hope his style of leadership does not distract from the fact that this country needs a new direction. We will take our country back and move up and onward.

    Now that McCain finally gets the fact that the country is serious, he's talking about a new direction. At first he was talking about the same old direction, which was down, down, down. He is not the man to lead this country at this time. His new direction is George Bush's old direction, down.

    July 22, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  3. jr

    Obama, is looking to appease the far left and the europeams. The far left has been hamering him on his move to the center the last several weeks. Thus his return to his original postion. The europeans, with some exceptions, are off in socialist heaven and have never had the intestinal fortitude to do what it takes. Obama, never had any intention of considering the opinion of the generals or the conditions on the ground. His mind was already made up when he left on this magical mystery tour.

    July 22, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  4. Irma in North Carolina

    Yes Mr Mccain put on your flag pin. The american people are getting tired of what you have to say about the war, so this is your strong point it is not going to get you the presidentcy this fall. Talk about the important things at home, gas prices, people losing their homes, the economy. What do you care this issues at home dont affect you as you have a rich wife, so you never have to worry do you. You will always be well cared for the heck with all the rest of the americans who are strugleing.

    July 22, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  5. Uchenna

    Obviously my fellow Republicans McThuselah and Rudy do not have any other thing to talk about?

    Republican for Barack Hussein Obama.

    July 22, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |

    McCain is just a tired old man too lazy to come up with ideas of his own. He either parrots Obama's positions and tries to claim them as his own, or criticizes everything Obama says because that's easier than having to think about explaining what he himself stands for. Mistake-a-day McCain needs to take a pill and lie down.

    July 22, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  7. Open Your 3rd Eye

    Don't let all the noise drown out the truth. McCain is stuck in a corner hollering for attention. THAT'S ALL THIS IS.

    It's easy: Just ignore him like a 2 year old in time-out. Eventually, he'll cry himself to sleep.

    July 22, 2008 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  8. Foreign observer

    It was the American money surge to the Iraqi fighters which mattered. Now we applaud our soldiers for the surge results. Be honest – there have been 100 000 Suni fighters in the streets – now they are on American payroles.

    July 22, 2008 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  9. Bob Stephens

    Hey Weather vane McCain, before you start knocking anyone, sit down with a map of the world and learn which countries border each other , so you don't sound like an idiot.

    July 22, 2008 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  10. Emma, San Jose, CA

    McCain – has a pattern of sounding like a broken record which will continue. If we wonder about McCain's cognitive confusion, you should do a review of the research that emphasizes we have a decline in our clear thinking that starts even before we are fifty. By the time we are 70, almost all of us have some decline. The bad news is that we continue to decline. (I am 72 and I experience the decline.) If elected, one can predict a chance of McCain becoming even more confused from year to year.

    July 22, 2008 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |


    z z z z z

    same old, reworked, revised, reworded baloney from McCain.

    who gives a crap about the surge?
    who else besides McCain is talking about the surge?

    this is so frustrating.

    CNN, ya'll are starting to really suck. where's real news?

    July 22, 2008 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  12. nerakami

    Obama has fallen for his own hype… and the media spin.
    He thinks he is a shoo in for president, so why bother to wait.
    He puts his own glorification and star image above the good of his country. I want a humble leader who acts to the benefit of others- NOT just to advance himself. He is on a mad grab for power."

    Are you serious with this garbage you write? After 8 years of Bush renegade, corrupted, illegal style governing, your words are meaningless to those of us living the dire consequence of the past 8 years and to have a candidate like McCain who has voted 95% in line with Bush..... guess what? We are running in the opposite direction!!!!!!

    July 22, 2008 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  13. Andre' of Maryland

    All I hear,see, and read is what MCain does not like about Obama, his campaign, or his messege. My concern is that I hear nothig about McCain's plans, message, or vision. If McCain thinks that he will win the election because he attacks Obama all day what does America think he will do as President? He will do nothing but ensure we go from War to War with no end in sight. He has not grasped the fact that as President he sets the agenda for not only our Military but our Foreign Policy. He has shown me he cares only about......"winning wars." This means that his foreign policy will be to stay in, start, and look for another war. Is this the leadership we need?

    July 22, 2008 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  14. Charles I Am

    To all McSame supporters, allow me to offer you a life line. Saying the same thing over and over again does not make it true. Tell that to Mcsame the next time he comes to your town. The man needs new material, his old stuff was borrowed from Jack Benny. Fooled us twice and we let a C-student run this country into the ground. We will not be fooled a third time by you, Fox (fixed), CNN, ABC or the like. This time we are listening and buzz words (liberal, inexperienced, Rev Wright, etc.) won't work. Tell your candidate to lay out his (Pres. Bush) plans and let the votes fall where they may!!! He needs to MAN UP with some ideas or shut up and push rewind on Bush's old ones.

    July 22, 2008 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  15. Jane, MD

    As an Independent, I must confess that I am disappointed at the deficit in intelligence and rationale coming out of the McCain camp. Our country has had enough of people with a narrow and unintelligent world view.

    The Republicans have hate and jealousy steaming out of their ears, they just don't get it – We want out of Iraq. They want us out, and they sure have enough money now to self-govern.

    July 22, 2008 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  16. Charles

    What victory? This is one of those unwinnable wars. The major goal, I guess, was to get rid of Saddam. That's done. What more do you want? The troops have done their jobs and can leave knowing they did a great job. But winning a war when there is no clear enemy to say "I quit" is impossible. I would think a person with such vast military and foreign policy experience would have figured that out.

    July 22, 2008 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  17. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    No wonder the New York Times rejected McCain's Op ed, it wasn't newsworthy, neither is McCain. McCain is a desperate old man and sounds more like a parrot repeating the same thing over and over and over and over, again. McCain can't be listening to his campaign advisors because he's another GWB and won't listen to anyone. Spport Obama.

    July 22, 2008 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  18. Oh Yeah

    Dear Selected Not Elected:

    The only arrogant fools are you and your candidate, McPain. This country has had enough and McPain will never go anywhere near our White House, except to help his buddy move his things back to Crawford.

    July 22, 2008 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  19. Joan

    I think it is inappropriate for any presidential candidate to travel oversees and meet with governments while US troops are deployed in the region. Regardless if you love him or hate him..George Bush is still Commander in Chief. Such self centered interests only promotes one's own agenda and could possibly place those serving at greater risk.

    July 22, 2008 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  20. carol

    John McCain needs to chill and get a rocking chair and he can rock with Cindy McCain needs to stop talking so much about Barack and get on with things at hand. He is not presidental material never has and never will.

    July 22, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  21. Linda from Prescott AZ

    It would be interesting to see the Senator from ARizona rationally address such things as the economy, health care, education, etc., you know all the stuph we are whining about....because quite frankly I'm darned tired of hearing im whine about Iraq and the surge. Keep in mind as well, McCain may be a decorated POW, however contrary to his statements he doesn't know how to win a war, end a war or anything of that nature. He is not one of the great foriegn policy wonks in this nature, he is merely a hawk and he's having frequent tantrums.

    July 22, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  22. AMIGO

    Any fool knows that the 'surge' "worked" because the sunnis were paid off with large amounts of money to turn against AlQ- AND at the same time Muktada AlS- – instructed his militia to keep-it-down and ge3t some R&R !

    July 22, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  23. Richard, FL

    The democratically elected leader of the country we invaded in order to give them democracy wants us out of the country. Guess that's not the "democracy" McCain and Bush have preached.

    Here is what the hypocrites have said:

    “If they were to say leave, we would leave”
    - George Bush, White House rose garden, 5/2007
    “It is obvious we would have to leave if they asked us to leave”
    - John McCain, Council on Foreign Relations, 4/2004

    July 22, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  24. Sally

    Obama enjoys the spotlight when the stage is ready for him. His only effort is to give a speech and the crowd will cheer!!!! anything else Obama???

    July 22, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  25. vjh

    Phantom: It's called campaigning.

    July 22, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
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