July 29th, 2008
08:45 AM ET
14 years ago

McCain says he could support 16-month Iraq timetable

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/07/28/mccain.larryking/art.mccain.0728.ap.jpg caption="Sen. John McCain appears Monday in Bakersfield, California, before talking to Larry King."]LOS ANGELES, California (CNN) - Sen. John McCain could support a 16-month timetable for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq, he told CNN's Larry King Monday night.

But the presumptive Republican presidential nominee said he would only do that if military chiefs deemed the "conditions on the ground" safe enough.

Watch: McCain talks to Larry King

Speaking from Bakersfield, California, the Arizona senator said he would not stick to a "hard and firm date" suggested by Sen. Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee.

Full story

Related: McCain says voters should not be concerned about his health

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (420 Responses)
  1. Ontaya

    Talk about your flip-flopper I thought we needed 100 years. Is this a change in policy hmmmmmmmmmm I wonder!

    July 29, 2008 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  2. Texas trail puppy!

    Ladies and Gentlemen i present you, the ULTIMATE FLIP-FLOPPER of all times Sen. John McCain better known as Johny Boy.
    Obama '08

    July 29, 2008 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  3. LOL @ PUMA and other dolts




    July 29, 2008 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  4. Obama 08: mature, white woman

    Obama has clearly stated throughout the primaries and in the presidential race that he will be as careful taking American troops out as they were carelessly sent in. What's the difference?? McCain has flipped here!!

    July 29, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  5. Jim - Wisconsin

    He went from 100 Year War -> War over by end of his first term –> Supporting Obamas original plan that he had for the last 2 years.

    Obama has picked up another supporter of his great plan.

    military chiefs deemed the "conditions on the ground" safe enough.

    All of the "military chiefs" have been trying to get out of Iraq since last year. They are there for 15 months at a time and see how pointless the war is.

    For those of you who said that all Ron Paul supporters will vote for McCain are completely wrong. Ron Paul never supported the war and being a former Ron Paul supporter I would never vote for McCain.

    McCain = Warmonger

    July 29, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  6. Woman for Obama

    Ugh, McCain just give it up.

    July 29, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  7. Jozee

    McCain says he'll flip flop every 5 seconds. Four, Three, Two, One.....

    McCain says he's against the 16 month Iraq Timetable!


    July 29, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  8. mclies


    Obama 08/2012

    July 29, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  9. Open Your 3rd Eye

    WOW. WOW. WOW.

    Now that is what I call a MAJOR F.L.I.P. F.L.O.P.

    Now let's be fair and give this guy as much criticism as Barack would get for a MINOR flip flop.

    This is HUGE!!

    July 29, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  10. Canada

    If elected John McCain will surely further alienate the USA from the rest of the world.

    He doesn't get it.

    His tone, his rhetoric, his demeanour are confrontational in nature. He's proving that he can't keep his word to run a clean campaign. He's lied, misled and flip flopped.

    Not someone you can trust to keep America safe and prosperous.

    Obama is setting the tone for much needed change and hope. He's been proven right way more often than wrong. This 16 month timetable is just another example of that.

    July 29, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  11. Will-South Dakota

    He's just pandering now, he's behind in the polls and the American People are telling him he was WRONG to vote to invade Iraq and he neds to apologize for his vote and admit he was wrong......now he needs a boost in the polls after Obama's successful trip. FLIP FLOP

    July 29, 2008 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  12. Tired of W, OH

    So, he has now adopted Obama's stance on Iraq...

    This has been another episode of "As the flip flops". Tune in tomorrow, same time, same channel.

    July 29, 2008 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  13. Orlando

    I supports a 16-month huh huh huh, I didn't say withdrawal. Barack just admit the surge worked. Repug talking point -When in doubt spin to the surge.

    July 29, 2008 09:11 am at 9:11 am |

    McCain continues to confuse me.. i though he wanted to saty in Iraq for 100 Years?!?!? Two words... FLIP FLOP

    July 29, 2008 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  15. Ken Pittsburgh

    Can we all spell the word F-L-I-P F-L-0-P
    McCAIN supporter leave a bad taste in your mouths

    July 29, 2008 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  16. Anonymous

    i believe mccain has now REFINED his position from 100 years to possibly 16 months. what a hypocrite...

    good shot of his melanoma, CNN.

    July 29, 2008 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  17. Tired of W, OH

    It's funny how all these men of "experience" eventually change their positions to match the man of good judgment. Pretty soon, McCain will try to say he is really an African American to try to get the black vote.

    Say it with me....

    July 29, 2008 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  18. mccainisOLD

    16 month timetable? Where have I heard that before? OH YEAH Senator Obama has been saying that for a while now and Senator McCain has been ripping him for that statement for months. But now that it looks like Obama is RIGHT, McCain tries to make it sound like he is for it. Kind of like offshore drilling, I am against it, oh wait I am for it. OH and did anyone else see that after McCain said he was for offsshore drilling his donations from the oil industry went UP FIVE TIMES!!! McCain will say anything to try and get elected.

    July 29, 2008 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  19. Lorna, NY

    McCain is worse that a snake oil salesman! GEEZ, if this is the best the repubs can do, that party is doomed.

    July 29, 2008 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  20. Doug

    Hey....a more firm time table for withdrawal from Iraq is what the American people want. More importantly, it is what the Iraqis want.

    Obama has not set a date. He has suggested a time in which we should be able to clean up, settle up and leave. He knows full well that the situation will dictate exactly when that happens. If things are bad, we stay until they improve. If conditions continue to improve from here on, we leave sooner.

    McCain says that we're won, but he doesn't want to leave. However, in his new found role of pandering and taking on the most politically expedient view, he has jumped on the bandwagon of a (roughly) 16-month timetable. He needs votes. He is more poll-driven than Clinton was accused of being.

    It must be gut-wrenching to adopt hypocracy in order to try to get elected president.

    Whither the old, sensible John McCain?

    July 29, 2008 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  21. Not surprised.

    Sheesh, make up your mind already you big flip-flopper!

    Hmmm....McCain didn't make this decision for political reasons now did he? He accuses Obama of this, yet he's blatantly flipping on this issue. McCain has a serious medical problem, he has no spine.

    July 29, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  22. pat C.

    why doesn't McCain just call obama everyday and ask him what he should say to his small crowd of followers? it seems that all he can come up with now is what barack has already said.
    this old man can not come up with anything original to save his old life. he is a disgrace to his party! last night watching him stand before a nasty oil rig in cal. and all he could offer the public was to make sure we use SUN SCREEN....oh my GOD.....is this what we have to endure for another 100 days?
    i could not bring myself to even watch this joker on larry king last night. i would rather have a root canel than have to sit thru an hour with grandpa Mccain!

    July 29, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  23. CJ/PA

    Wow - I don't know if this is an out-and-out flip flop, but the wind must be blowin' because McCain is swayin'. He has just turned into a mean, nasty, sarcastic little man who can't seem to articulate his own policies so he attacks Obama's. The Straight-Talk Express has turned into the Desperation Train!

    July 29, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  24. JAS from PA

    This guy will say or do anything won't he, "my friends"? He will bugger Bush for the Gay Vote if he has to or if he hasn't already

    July 29, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  25. Noah

    Who's the flip-flopper?

    July 29, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
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