September 29th, 2008
12:20 PM ET
14 years ago

Fact Check: Did Obama vote to cut funds for the troops?

The Statement:
At a presidential debate Friday, Sept. 26, in Oxford, Mississippi, Republican nominee Sen. John McCain repeated his campaign trail charge that Democratic rival Sen. Barack Obama tried to cut off money to the military. "And Senator Obama ... after promising not to vote to cut off funds for the troops, did the incredible thing of voting to cut off the funds for the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan," McCain said.

Get the facts!

The Facts:
On May 24, 2007, Obama was one of 14 senators who voted against a war-spending plan that would have provided emergency funds for American troops overseas. He, like many Democrats, was pushing for an end to the war in Iraq, and the legislation included no provisions for that. "We must fund our troops," Obama said that day in a news release. "But we owe them something more. We owe them a clear, prudent plan to relieve them of the burden of policing someone else's civil war." McCain, and Obama's running mate Sen. Joe Biden, voted in favor of that resolution.

Obama had supported, and voted for, an earlier version of the bill that would have provided the money for the troops but established a timeline for Bush to begin bringing them home. Biden also voted for that version of the plan. McCain was one of three senators who did not vote that day - but he urged Bush to veto it after it passed 51-46 on April 26, 2007. "I look forward to the president's prompt veto of this misguided bill," McCain said in a written statement. Bush did veto the measure on May 1, 2007, leading to the second vote.


Misleading. Obama supported a different version of the troop-funding plan McCain refers to - one that McCain spoke against.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Fact Check • John McCain
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