Here We Go

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Obama, perhaps ill-advisedly, said today he will “continue to refine” his proposed policies for troop withdrawals from Iraq. Ill-advised because you might expect that nuance to be seen as opening the door to backtracking on his withdrawal plans.

Sure enough, overheated coverage of his remarks has followed this afternoon.

Obama has just finished a second press availability to clarify his initial remarks.

We’ll have the video shortly.

Late Update: As promised:

Later Update: The McCain campaign issued the following statement late today:

“Today, Barack Obama reversed that position proving once again that his words do not matter. He has now adopted John McCain’s position that we cannot risk the progress we have made in Iraq by beginning to withdraw our troops immediately without concern for conditions on the ground. There is nothing wrong with changing your mind when the facts on the ground dictate it. Indeed, the facts have changed because of the success of the surge that John McCain advocated for years and Barack Obama opposed in a position that put politics ahead of country.

“Now that Barack Obama has changed course and proven his past positions to be just empty words, we would like to congratulate him for accepting John McCain’s principled stand on this critical national security issue. If he had visited Iraq sooner or actually had a one-on-one meeting with General Petraeus, he would have changed his position long ago.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

David Kurtz is Managing Editor and Washington Bureau Chief of Talking Points Memo where he oversees the news operations of TPM and its sister sites.
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