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. Abram Blocton

    McCain proves Obama right once again...

    July 29, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  2. Mark

    So McCain adopted Obama's position while saying that Obama adopted his position on Iraq? 🙂

    He should seriously get some real advisors. Now the Republican base will hate him and independets see him as a flip-flopper.

    July 29, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  3. Dave in Houston

    Instead of adopting Obama's ideas, John McCain ought to just go ahead and adopt Barack Obama himself. (Barack Obama, Sr. died in 1982.)

    That way, the guy with the good ideas in the first place could become President and McCain could be the "First Dad."

    July 29, 2008 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  4. Rave

    Why not just support Barack Obama and vote for him in the general election. McPain flip-flop-flip-flop and back to Obama's strategy
    OBAMA (2008 -16)

    July 29, 2008 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  5. Florida democrat




    .......or maybe he is too old to remember what his position was 6 months ago?

    July 29, 2008 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  6. Debby

    Well of course anyone would support it thats almost a year and a half from now. I thought Obuma was taking the troops out in 60 days after he took office not 16 months. Obama has more flop/flops then I can wear in a year.

    July 29, 2008 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  7. Jim

    Looks like everyone is swaying with Obama's judgement. That's what we need right now, a president with the right JUDGEMENT, not full of smear tactics aspecially while someone else is abroad building allies, I thought Mccain said he wouldn't stoop to such a level of smear campaigning...

    July 29, 2008 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  8. Yup

    Yes, McCain would support all of what Obama says...

    July 29, 2008 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  9. Lisa in Ga.

    John McCain does not know what he wants... he will say what he thinks the american people wants to hear..... I cant believe he call Obama a flip flopper..... what is he the pancake?

    July 29, 2008 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  10. James , Houston, TX.

    McCain, Once a P.O.W. always a P.O.W.

    July 29, 2008 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  11. Saad from NJ

    Could and would are two completely opposite and different things. President Bush over the last eight years has said he could to at least a million things if not billions or trillions both in the numbers of times he has said it and the amount of money it has cost us so...... could has become a very deceiving word.

    July 29, 2008 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  12. TerryDo--PumaPac

    That is a good strategy John McCain, shadow Obama's solutions just like he shadowed Clinton's solutions and policies and adopted them as if they were his own.

    And as far as your age is concerned, no one is worried about your age except the Obama campaign who wish to paint you as decrepit but it looks to me as if Obama may need a hip replacement before a septogeneriam

    July 29, 2008 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  13. Dave

    So he was against Obama's idea before he was in favor of it.

    July 29, 2008 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  14. Jamaal kansas

    FLIP FLOPPING MCsame now he supports a 16 month timetable before he said no time table but cnn doesn't call him a Flip Flopper now not MCsame he tries to say that Obama is inexperienced but he starts to back proposals by Obama this is Getting Out of Hand call him on his FLIP FLOPPING MCCAIN IS A FLIP FLOPPER!

    July 29, 2008 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  15. Jerry in Boston

    "McCain, however, would not elaborate on the subject of Pakistan.

    "I'm not going to go there ... because Pakistan is a sovereign nation. I think the Pakistanis would want bin Laden out of their hair and out of their country, and it's causing great difficulties in Pakistan itself.""

    In case you hadn't noticed Sen. McCain, Iraq is supposed to be a sovereign nation now too. Their leader and their people want us out. Why won't you respect THEIR right as a sovereign nation to make these decisions? Why is is up to Gneral Petraeus?

    You can't have it both ways. You can't claim they have had successful elections in Iraq and now have a functioning democracy, but whether or not we leave their country is up to us.

    July 29, 2008 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  16. Bob Indianapolis, IN

    Way to come around (along with your pal, Dumbya the Clown Prince) to the timetable Obama was been talking about since Day 1! For all your "experience", originality isn't your strong suit, John BoY!

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


    July 29, 2008 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  18. Defining Moment

    So much for "I will not surrender" Mr. McFlopper. Which way is the wind blowing today ... Pathetic, just pathetic.

    July 29, 2008 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  19. jfs Memhis, Tn

    What else will he take from Obama's JUDGEMENT Bag ??? If this doesn't make a statement to the AVERAGE VOTER.......well, heaven help this country. McCain hasn't any new ideas..........He IS stuck with experinece of 30yrs and now lacks the creativity and innovation to PROGRESS with the rest of us..............McCain's time was in 2000...the world has grown into a whole new world sice then. The comfort of what was must now yield to what will be !!!! This 60 year old KNOWS when the time has come to be a supporterof innovation... youth will always survive it did for us and will for our next generation of politicians. I am beginning to since that the riff in this country is now one of the past and the HOPE in the future. Us old timers need to let go Sen. McCain

    July 29, 2008 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  20. Irma in North Carolina

    Boy this guy cannot make up his mind, now is just saying this cause most of people agree with Obama on the time table. He thinks the only thing that is going on is the war, he cannot talk about anything else, I think the americans want to hear more about the high gas prices, putting food on our table, and how we are going to make the mortage payment. Why should he care he has billionaire beer and drug pushing wife, who will make all these payments for him.

    July 29, 2008 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  21. John B. From New Hampshire

    sounds like mcCain and bush are following obama. bush is now engaged in talks with Iran, and JM supports the 16 month time table. who has the better judgement? the answer is clear!!

    Obama/Clinton '08

    July 29, 2008 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  22. Ms. RDS

    Score 1 for Obama....don't get to excited though folks. McCain might declare he didn't say this and flip flop again that now becoming his speciality!

    July 29, 2008 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  23. CMB

    What happened to "timetable is a CODE WORD" for quitting???

    McCain supported this war and was one of the strongest vocal supporters of it ALL ALONG. America is in debt 435 BILLION – this debt is partially his fault.

    McCain was WRONG from the start. He lacks the judgement needed to make these major decisions. He gets confused too easily.

    July 29, 2008 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  24. Joe the Troll

    The Republicans keep changing their minds about this war. Now, it doesn't even matter that the Iraq government wants us out. After all, who are they? Just some ignorant puppets our own government set up. Whay should anything they say end our OCCUPATION?

    "Conditions on the ground" means no more to McCain than "when I say so." Some leader he's not.

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

    This man lacks any form of credibility on the issue! He has vigorously denounced anyone who would even suggest a time table on Iraq and he's now embraced it. And national security is supposed to be his strongest suit!

    July 29, 2008 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
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