BLITZER: So Why do you think he said that 16 months is basically a pretty good timetable?
MCCAIN: He said it's a pretty good timetable based on conditions on the ground. I think it's a pretty good timetable, as we should -- or horizons for withdrawal. But they have to be based on conditions on the ground.
I basically agree with this statement, but McCain doesn't:
MCCAIN YESTERDAY: “Speaking at a town hall meeting here, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee said that Obama, even after visiting Iraq, was showing ‘a remarkable failure to understand the facts on the ground’ by continuing to call for a withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq on a fixed timetable.” [Atlanta Journal Constitution, July 24, 2008]
MCCAIN LAST WEEK: “An artificial timetable based on political expediency would have led to disaster and could still turn success into defeat,” Mr. McCain said. [New York Times, 7/19/08]
MCCAIN DURING THE PRIMARIES: Later, McCain turned his fire on Democrats, including Obama and Sen. Hillary Clinton, accusing them of endangering Americans by advocating a specific timetable for withdrawal. "It would be an unconscionable act of betrayal, a stain on our character as a great nation, if we were to walk away from the Iraqi people and consign them to the horrendous violence, ethnic cleansing and possibly genocide that would follow a reckless, irresponsible and premature withdrawal," he said in a California speech.