Monday, January 28, 2008

Romney's Timetable Triangulation

After hearing endlessly from all corners about how McCain was lying about what Romney had said about timetables and that McCain was somehow going "below the belt" on Iraq, it's nice to see someone put the record straight.

From Stephen Hayes at The Weekly Standard:

Did Romney say he would, like Bush, veto anything with a timetable? Or does the rest of his answer suggest that he's for the timetables as long as they're private? Again, it's debatable.

But to go as far as CNN's Jeffrey Toobin, who claimed that McCain is "lying" about what Romney said, is a stretch. At the time Romney made the comments, many observers, including several reporters, took him to mean exactly what McCain is imputing to him now. If the Romney campaign protested that interpretation, their objections did now show up in any of the follow-up reporting on his comments.

McCain has long believed that Romney hedged on the surge and the war in Iraq. At a debate in Durham, New Hampshire, on September 5, Romney answered a question about the surge by saying, "the surge is apparently working." McCain pounced a moment later. "No, not apparently. It's working." It was one of McCain's strongest debate performances and he points to it as a "seminal" moment in the remarkable turnaround of his campaign.

UPDATE: Also, there's this from Byron York:
I think it's indisputable that, at the time, McCain's Republican rivals supported the surge but were also happy that it was McCain who was all the way out on the limb. Last February, someone in the Romney camp told me that yes, Romney supported the surge, but that "McCain owns the surge."
UPDATE: looks like some of Mitt's supporters are still thinking in these terms: Well if the surge continues to do well, Mitt can take the credit, but if it goes sour, Mitt won't shoulder the blame!

Reality Check - If IRAQ somehow gets WORSE with the current strategy in place, there is NO WAY *ANY* Republican (sans Ron Paul) would be able to win in November.

And if voters want an "outsider" in a Clinton v. Romney race, they are likely to go with Mike Bloomberg - who will see an opportunity to appeal to the broad center in such a polarizing contest.

1 comment:

Land of Da Free said...

Romney clearly stated in the GMA interview that he would veto any timetables on Iraq. He said we shouldn't share our goals and milestones with the enemy. Watch the interview for yourself:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mu1O_0AIJ1k

I am not a Romney supporter. McCain is being totally and intentionally dishonest on this matter. He used to be a man of honor, but that is getting harder and harder to claim at this point.