Thursday, June 12, 2008

Policy Difference: Obama and McCain on Iraq

A lot of hay has been made over McCain's comments on the Today Show yesterday (who knew the Today Show could make news). His sound bite-let came off more calous than I'm sure he intended but it leads to an important policy difference. McCain has consistently laid out a template wherein the US maintains a long term presence similar to what we have in Japan and all around the world. 

Here's the Today Show Clip one more time. 

Again, set the delivery aside. McCain believes a long term draw down is possible. But to a sustainable troop level.

Senator Obama on the other hand seems to want to get out of Iraq expeditiously. 

Above, Obama gets to lay out his Iraq Policy in some length (from a debate in February). He seems to suggest a draw down and a date certain, but then mentions all of these forces we will need. Embassy protection, counter-terrorism, humanitarian protection. What number are we drawing down to and when? His argument is about strategy on the world stage. It's cerebral and a breath of fresh air after the Bush administration. McCain's is about nuts and bolts military action. The question for voters on this issue is do they want erudite or do they want meat and potatoes? 

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