How many times have we gone from unconditional immediate pullout, to timetable, to unconditional 16 month timetable, then conditions of the ground, then Moveon.org has a cow and just BEFORE Obama goes on his Iraq trip to learn “the facts” he is back to 16 month timetable (odd to make the policy before you go on the fact finding trip)….
Well now Obama tells Newsweek that he is back on the ‘conditions on the ground’ scenario.
Is anyone else getting sick of Obama being on every side of every issue? In another reversal Obama now says he wants off shore drilling, but since he isn’t pressuring for it to happen it looks like more talk to be on both sides again. This is 2004 all over again. Why do the Democrats keep nominating people like this?
Newsweek: In Iraq, it’s not new that Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki has wanted to take control of his own country. But there’s always been this gap between his assessment of his abilities and American commanders’ saying he’s not up to it. As president, faced with that difference between what he says he can do and what the commanders say he can do, how would you choose between them?
Obama: Iraq is a sovereign country. Not just according to me, but according to George Bush and John McCain. So ultimately our presence there is at their invitation, and their policy decisions have to be taken into account. I also think that Maliki recognizes that they’re going to need our help for some time to come, as our commanders insist, but that the help is of the sort that is consistent with the kind of phased withdrawal that I have promoted. We’re going to have to provide them with logistical support, intelligence support. We’re going to have to have a very capable counterterrorism strike force. We’re going to have to continue to train their Army and police to make them more effective.
Newsweek: You’ve been talking about those limited missions for a long time. Having gone there and talked to both diplomatic and military folks, do you have a clearer idea of how big a force you’d need to leave behind to fulfill all those functions?
Obama: I do think that’s entirely conditions-based. It’s hard to anticipate where we may be six months from now, or a year from now, or a year and a half from now.
Ok so we are withdrawing but the size of force that remains for logistics, anti-terror forces, intelligence (and lets not for get security because that is always an issue) is entirely conditions based. This puts him on both sides of the issue rhetorically, but policy wise this is exactly the same position as McCain and Bush.
Obama has the most left wing and partisan voting record in the Senate, so as a traditional guy I had no intention of voting for him anyways, however this situation is so bad that the left is starting to say that Obama has damaged himself so badly that he is not likely to win.
Check Out what the Huffington Post had to say:
The Molten Core of Barack: Why Obama Can’t Win
Posted August 4, 2008
Barack Obama should not have to hit a three-pointer to win this election. It should be a lay-up. Yet if Senator Obama is doing so well, why is he doing so poorly? And if John McCain is doing so poorly, why is he doing so well?
The Rasmussen Reports Daily Tracking has McCain down only 1%, 43% to Obama’s 44%. Real Clear Politics National Average of surveys pegs McCain less than 3% behind, with Gallup showing it tied, and USA Today actually placing McCain ahead of Obama, 49% to 45%. CNN reports McCain is in a better position in Colorado, Michigan, and Wisconsin than he was a month ago and they have moved Minnesota toward McCain into the toss-up category…
Despite the McCain campaign’s effectiveness, however, the best campaign against Barack Obama is not being run by his opponent, but by Barack Obama. It is Obama’s campaign that presents their candidate as an ever-changing work-in-progress. It is his own campaign that occludes our ability to know this man, depicting him as authentic as a pair of designer jeans.
To earn the Democratic nomination, as Fred Thompson points out, Obama ran as George McGovern without the experience, a left-of-center politician who would meet unconditionally with Iran, pull us precipitously out of Iraq, prohibit new drilling for oil, and grow big government in Washington by all but a trillion dollars. In his general election TV ad debut, however, Obama pirouetted like Baryshnikov. With a commercial Mike Huckabee could have run in a Republican primary, Obama now emphasizes his commitment to strong families and heartland values, “Accountability and self-reliance. Love of country. Working hard without making excuses.” In this yet unwritten chapter of his next autobiography, Obama tells us he is the candidate of “welfare to work” who supports our troops and “cut taxes for working families.” The shift in his political personae has been startling. Obama has moved right so far and so fast, he could end up McCain’s Vice-Presidential pick.
General-election Obama now billboards his doubts about affirmative action. He has embraced the Bush Doctrine of pre-emption saying, “I will do everything in my power to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon…everything.” He tells his party “Democrats are not for a bigger government.” Oil drilling is a consideration. His FISA vote and abandonment of public campaign finance introduce us to an Obama of recent invention. And as he abandons his old identity for the new, breeding disenchantment among his formerly passionate left-of-center supporters and, equally, doubts among the center he courts, he risks becoming nothing at all, a candidate who is everything and nothing in the same moment.
I rarely agree with the Huffington Post, but facts are facts and numbers are numbers and Obama’s numbers have been dropping since February. He lost the popular vote to Hillary in the primary and holds on to the nomination by super delegates. He has already lost the bump he got from the Euro-tour and most importantly, Obama has lost two very important demographics, women over 40 and women over 50, which for a Democrat is unheard of in the last 20 years. Former Clinton Whitehouse political guru Dick Morris says that these numbers do not reflect racism, but reflect the fact that older women know a smooth talker who lacks substance when they hear one.