August 26th, 2008
09:36 AM ET
15 years ago

Veterans take aim at Obama in ad

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Vets for Freedom will air a new ad Wednesday, 'I am the Surge'."]
(CNN) — Vets for Freedom, a group of Iraq and Afghan combat veterans, is urging Sen. Barack Obama to acknowledge success of the surge in Iraq in a new ad airing Wednesday.

“Senator Barack Obama credits the improvements in Iraq to anything but the surge,” says Sgt. Gabriel Herrera.

“But, I know the surge worked. I was there,” Travis Quinlan adds.

The “surge” refers to President Bush’s decision to send an additional 30,000 troops into Iraq beginning in January of 2007. The presumed Republican presidential nominee, Sen. John McCain, was a strong supporter of the president’s decision to send more troops to Iraq.

CNN Election Center: Where do the candidates stand on Iraq?

The 30-second spot, “I am the Surge,” will begin airing in Denver, the site Democratic National Convention. The Democrats’ theme Wednesday night is “Securing America’s Future,” and they plan a salute to the nation’s veterans that evening.

The featured vets urge Obama, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, to follow the lead of fellow Sens. Joe Lieberman and Lindsay Graham and cite a resolution the pair put forth which recognizes the success of the surge overseas.

“So call Senator Obama,” Herrera says, “and tell him to support our success by supporting Senate Resolution 636.”

Vets for Freedom will spend $1.1 million dollars to run the ad for four weeks according to a press release. After airing for a week in Denver, the spot will run for a week in Minneapolis, Ohio, Michigan and Colorado.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (289 Responses)
  1. Tom L

    The recent gains in Iraq, whether caused by surge or not, show that in fact the Iraq operation WAS the right way to go. Huge gamble on the part of Bush, in which he defied half his nation, and the rest of the world, to give a real shocking wake-up call to the Arab world post 9-11. And now, guess what, his gamble and his faith in the ability of the US military to pull it off, has succeeded.

    Bush can now retire from office knowing that he did the right thing, and that he made the world a very significantly safer place for the future. And that the liberal's gloom and doomsaying was wrong, wrong, wrong!

    That's the REAL message that Democrats and liberals are so terribly unwilling to face, and so therefore so afraid of.

    August 26, 2008 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  2. Eric Jack

    Just this week Gen. Petreaus acknowledged that the Sunni Awakening had a greater significance and started before the surge! The surge still has not rectified the political conditions in Iraq! Yet when will these vet groups condemn our ever going to war!

    August 26, 2008 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  3. pannie


    August 26, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  4. mike

    we have to have a resolution that pat's ourselves on the back???

    August 26, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  5. Mark-Virginia Beach

    Funny how this "resolution" comes just before the elections and is sponsored by Lieberman and Graham, two fixtures on John McCain's backside constently. If anyone actually listened to Senator Obamas comments about the surge, he certainly DOES acknowledge the impact of the surge ALONG with many other factors.
    The sad part is that the surge has been successful, much in part by the $$ we have been giving to the militias NOT to attack us. Sounds like paying the mob for protection. stop the gravy trainin and see how quickly the violence will surge..

    August 26, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  6. Carrie Goodeagle Hayden, Idaho

    Impeach Bush and Cheney, they both lied. Don't deny it. What about Scott McClellan the once-upon-a-time Press Secretary, is he lying about the liars?

    August 26, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  7. SCvoter

    CNN, why is this story at the top of your politics page? Is it really the top story of the day? Please start earning the moniker you've given yourselves. Try BEING the best news team in the business. Make the tough calls. What would Murrow say?

    August 26, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  8. angus

    Saint Obama refuses to face reality once again.....Imagine that

    August 26, 2008 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  9. WordsMatter

    As a 29 year navy vet, I can tell you that the military and vets will vote 85 percent for McCain. Why? Because we were successful in Iraq because of the surge and McCain is a big reason why the surge was put in place. McCain had the courage to support the surge and he will reap the benefit of such courage.

    August 26, 2008 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  10. Chryssa

    I don't know how ANY vet could be for McCain. Republicans are happy to send them to war, then act like they've never heard of them when the return home and need help. This isn't about the surge – it's about vets being able to live normal, healthy lives after war. And so far, that doesn't happen often enough.

    August 26, 2008 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  11. Dave

    If the surge worked, why are we still there, getting more troops blown up daily? And if these vets support McCain, why has McCain consistently voted to cut their pay and benefits? John McCain only TALKS about supporting our troops; when it comes time to actually DO something to back those words up, he falls short every single time. If people will actually look into McCain's record instead of just listening to his rhetoric, they'll find out who's really an empty suit in this race.

    August 26, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  12. Kevin

    To all those who are blaming McCain for his vote to "invade" Iraq, you need to start adding your VP noms name in the mix. Biden voted for it to. Change you can't believe in.

    August 26, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  13. Greg Pottstown, Pa.

    Do you trust Obama, McCain or the vets that were in Iraq. If you say the vets then you also trust McCain.

    August 26, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  14. Pick Me! Pick Me!

    They should have used the $1.1 million to help their fellow veterans with their rehab.

    What a waste of money. They should know better.

    August 26, 2008 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
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