November 6th, 2007
07:00 PM ET
13 years ago

Edwards challenges Clinton on Iraq war

Edward challenges Clinton to provide answers

NEW MARKET, New Hampshire (CNN) – Democratic presidential rival John Edwards Tuesday challenged Sen. Hillary Clinton to provide specifics on how she would end the Iraq war.

"Senator Clinton has repeatedly said she will 'end the war.' Yet she has provided no plan for how she’ll do it," Edwards said in a statement posted on his campaign blog.
"She has only said that she will hold a meeting with her advisers within 60 days of taking office. That’s not a plan. It’s a promise of a planning meeting. On such an important question we need honesty and answers, not double talk and evasions."

At his campaign stop, Edwards outlined to voters his list of questions, also enumerated in his release, that he believed all presidential candidates should answer on the Iraq war. They included:

–As president, will you withdraw all combat troops?
–Will you withdraw all combat troops within the first nine to ten months of your presidency?
–Will you conduct combat missions with troops stationed inside Iraq?
–Will you leave permanent military bases in Iraq?

Edwards proceeded to contrast his position with Clinton's. He said Clinton would keep combat troops in Iraq, continue combat missions and maintain military bases.

"To me that's not ending the war," said Edwards

–CNN New Hampshire Producer Sareena Dalla

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • John Edwards • New Hampshire • Race to '08
soundoff (50 Responses)
  1. Ronald Roston, West Covina, CA

    Though Mr. Cheney has lied outrageously, connived, bullied and intentionally tried to deceive the American people, I doubt any of these immoral behaviors are high crimes or misdemeanors. He has assiduously avoided being put under oath, so it is unlikely he can be charged with perjury like Mr. Clinton. I wish Mr. Cheney could be impeached as his transgressions make Mr. Clinton's look trivial by comparison. In any event I hope a thorough airing and investigation of the charges take place.

    November 6, 2007 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  2. Steve the Marine

    This guy is out of hand. He questions Clinton on not having a strategy for getting out of Iraq, while his big plan is to just leave and let the Iraqis pass or fail. People seem to forget that although we declared independance from Enland in 1776, we didn't ratify our Constitution until 1789 and were still a shakey country for several years after that. That was over 250 years ago...imagine if CNN were broadcasting from Valley Forge during the winter of 1775 saying that Gen. Washington needs to be relieved because the war effort is not moving fast enough or showing enough results. What of the French stopped supporting us because we didn't get on our feet fast enough?

    November 6, 2007 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  3. Ken, San Diego, CA

    This is pathetic.

    The only news Edwards makes (daily) has something to do with a Hillary insult. He is no longer pointing out policy differences, he is merely trying to find an attack point that will stick.

    Is he kidding about Iraq?? You really want to rush all of the troops out without a plan to do it successfully? You really want her to make some bonehead troop withdrawl plan without knowing of the infrastructure presently on the ground? How naive and reckless that would be...

    November 6, 2007 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  4. frank Honolulu HI

    He'll huff and puff and he'll try to blow Hilary down but it's a fairy tale. He's challanging the wrong person. He needs to stop fighting amonst democrats and try addressing the repubulican mess. He must think Hilary is easier to go after than the real serious issues.

    November 6, 2007 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  5. Daniel, NY

    At least Clinton can take comfort in new state general election polls that have her leading Republicans in California and Minnesota... and even leading a match-up in Texas!!! The rundown of complete numbers.

    November 6, 2007 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  6. Jon, Sacramento ~ Ca

    John John John... Hillary won't answer YOUR question or any others from debate moderators or citizens SHE considers "hostile".

    Hillary won't respond and her campaign will just blow off your challenge. Why should she explain anything she has publically stated? She will END the war.. how? when? a real plan? Minor details Hillary doesn't want to get wrapped up in.

    This is an election – not a truth telling moment for Hillary. Get on board John!

    November 6, 2007 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  7. xtina - chicago IL

    As usual John Edw. is asking questions, but doesn't have decision-making experience to show that he has had any success. Voting should be like a job interview – you don't ask the applicant what they WOULD do; you ask them what they HAVE done that's overcome difficulties and that has been a success.

    November 6, 2007 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  8. colony14 author, Mt Prospect, Illinois

    I don't remember anyone asking President Roosevelt or General Eisenhower about their exit strategy; I think Americans simply expected them to win the war. Don't candidates like Edwards understand that Iran and North Korea and Syria watch the news? I'm sure they are eagerly anticipating the election of a President who will immediately withdraw all troops from the Middle East and then let the Straits of Hormuz be blocked without any American interference. How much do you think a barrel of oil will THEN cost?

    November 6, 2007 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  9. d

    Nobody likes you. Please go away! I do like your wife, she would make a good VP.

    Hillary all the way!

    November 6, 2007 09:21 pm at 9:21 pm |
  10. dan, new oreleans, la

    just more dummycrat bs!!

    November 6, 2007 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  11. my911call, North Carolina

    Why would Hillary Clinton want to fall into this trap. It would be unwise to give detailed solid answers to these questions before being elected. She would need to see and hear the details of each situation from the experts running each area before making a final decision. We need her to approach these situations in a logical orderly manner and not just off the cuff. Good luck Hillary.

    November 6, 2007 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  12. Greg

    i still think edwards can win nomination

    November 6, 2007 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  13. Greg

    or take VP pick

    November 6, 2007 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  14. Piper, Atlantic, IA

    Seems to me that Edwards is taking Bill Richardson's questions to heart since Gov. Richardson asked these very questions weeks ago!!!

    November 6, 2007 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm |
  15. Debi, Philadelphia, Pa

    I am so tired of seeing that finger

    November 6, 2007 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  16. Art, San Diego,CA

    John Edwards has said nothing in any of the debates that suggests he has the wherewithall to get us out of Iraq. The only one who has a cogent plan is Senator Biden.

    November 6, 2007 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
  17. Lorenz, Queens, NY

    You tell her Edwards!

    November 6, 2007 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  18. Andrew Atlanta, GA

    Edwards is right. I like Hillary and will easily vote for her, but the one thing I cannot stand about her is how she supported the war, won't admit this was a mistake, and does not offer a plan for withdrawl. Otherwise, she's a stellar candidate.

    November 6, 2007 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  19. Mike,Panama City,FL

    By watching the debates and reading the ideas and clear vision of Hillary < I can answer the questions myself

    As president, will you withdraw all combat troops?

    –Will you withdraw all combat troops within the first nine to ten months of your presidency?
    –Will you conduct combat missions with troops stationed inside Iraq?
    –Will you leave permanent military bases in Iraq?

    1. Edwards their is a difference between combat troops and support troops , Hillary said she will pull out most of the combat troops out of Iraq , and have the remaining troops in Iraq have a support role .

    2.Obviously if you have support troops in Iraq their will be times that these troops will assist Iraqi security forces in combat missions.

    3.Also is very obvious , you have support troops OBVIOUSLY they need a base to stay on

    November 6, 2007 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  20. A. Thomas, New York, NY

    It is easy to ask criticise, condemn and complain, and most fools including JOhn Edwards do.

    I am curious how John Edwards would answer those questions himself, and I can bet there will be counter arguments to his answers too.

    Is it fair to expect a candidate to have all the detailed specifics of Hillary's (or any other candidate's) proposal for a complex issue like leaving Iraq, without discussing with the Iraq govt and our allies first?

    November 6, 2007 11:14 pm at 11:14 pm |
  21. Rurik, St. Paul, MN

    Edwards is right. Each presidential candidate, whether they're a crooked, lying Republican or a gutless, whiny Democrat, SHOULD answer those questions. And I want to know exactly where they stand on Illegal Immigration as well!

    November 6, 2007 11:25 pm at 11:25 pm |
  22. Jeff from Jersey

    So far all Edwards has is his attack on Clinton and not a single solution to anything.He really needs to get a better picture.He looks like he just beat someone to death for trying to make HIM answer a question and he's saying "Don't you even ask me for my own answer or I'll beat on YOU for awhile!".I guess Elizabeth wasn't around to tell him what to say.

    November 6, 2007 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  23. Tricia M Ch'town PEI

    You say Hillary's comments do not equate with ending the war. But you neglect to say what YOU would do TO END THE WAR. You neglect to say much about anything you would do should by a miracle you be elected President.

    Quite frankly, your only statements are those attacking other candidates.
    Your attacks on Hillary are very monotonous to say the least. And your low ball style of Campaigning leaves much to be desired especially where leadership qualities are concerned.

    But good luck it appears you'll need it.

    November 7, 2007 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
  24. Jack Tourince

    The war is needed...why? I do not know but, obviously there is a good reason. We should be nice and give a few billions to our nations soldiers.

    We give so many billions to the war and to our enemies who pretend to like us...why not give a few billions to the troops. It's not like anyone is going to miss it. Not when "we're" spending trillions on these wars.

    Dumbocrats are against all wars and the pro-active defence of this nation. They just pretend that they are all for it when the wind is blowing in the "right" direction.

    Lots of Republicans "strangely enough" are in the closet homosexuals...Dumbocrats are in the closet about being "anti war at all costs". Strangely we do not hear about the flaming Dumbocrats as often which is odd. Their liberal party ideology would seem to be a more fertile ground for those tendencies.

    An aside:

    I really get a kick out of the politicians when they roll their sleeves they are really getting down to business and doing some really hard work. I'd like to see some of you people role your sleeves up and spend a week by our soldiers during bomb location duty.

    Guess I've got a little cabin fever.

    November 7, 2007 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  25. Michael, Massachusetts

    I don't trust him at all. There is something about him that makes me think that he is running for the office of the presidency for the wrong reasons. We will find out sooner or later.

    November 7, 2007 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
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