In not what I would call an encouraging sign, Barack Obama fell victim to John McCain’s “you haven’t been to Iraq” frame of the issue. How important would it be for the Democratic candidate to make the visit now, in the throws of a presidential campaign, when the results would be less than informative? CNN went right to the source, Michael Ware in Iraq, and soon quickly shelved the revelation that it would be nothing but a “dog and pony show.”
The Washington Post had a few interesting twists to this story:
“Sen. John McCain has attacked Sen. Barack Obama for not traveling to Iraq to see the "facts on the ground." But a recent statement by McCain about troop levels has his opponents raising questions about his own knowledge. In comments to reporters…McCain asserted that ‘I can tell you that it is succeeding. I can look you in the eye and tell you it's succeeding. We have drawn down to pre-surge levels. Basra, Mosul and now Sadr city are quiet and it's long and it's hard and it's tough and there will be setbacks.’ …the troop level in Iraq is at about 155,000 right now,
well above the 130,000 that would mark a return to pre-surge levels. McCain's
comments about Mosul being "quiet" also have raised some eyebrows. On the day
that he said that, three suicide bombings in Mosul and the surrounding areas had
left 30 Iraqis dead.”
Supporters of “Free pass” McCain should be troubled by the high price they’re paying in the polls.