Poll Shows Increased Support for Sticking it out in Iraq

Rick Moran
This Washington Post-ABC News poll shows surprising support for John McCain's Iraq policy of removing our troops based on conditions on the ground and not as a result of a hard and fast timetable that Barack Obama favors.

Where just a few months ago only 40% of the public supported McCain's position of letting events on the ground dictate our withdrawal, that number has risen to 49% today with only 50% supporting Obama's withdrawal by timetable.

Even more significant, 53% of independent voters favor McCain's position. That is up from just 37% a few months ago.

There are still caveats. Fully 63% of Americans believe the war has not been worth the cost while slightly fewer believe it was a mistake to invade Iraq.

But the overall trends are extremely promising for McCain. The problem is that the Iraq War has slipped dramatically in importance as an issue in the campaign. The economy and health care are now the top concerns of the voter. And Obama scores much higher than McCain in both categories.

Nevertheless, it is clear the next president will have, if not a mandate, at least enough political backing to see things through to some kind of honorable end in Iraq.

That is, if they choose to make that their goal.
This Washington Post-ABC News poll shows surprising support for John McCain's Iraq policy of removing our troops based on conditions on the ground and not as a result of a hard and fast timetable that Barack Obama favors.

Where just a few months ago only 40% of the public supported McCain's position of letting events on the ground dictate our withdrawal, that number has risen to 49% today with only 50% supporting Obama's withdrawal by timetable.

Even more significant, 53% of independent voters favor McCain's position. That is up from just 37% a few months ago.

There are still caveats. Fully 63% of Americans believe the war has not been worth the cost while slightly fewer believe it was a mistake to invade Iraq.

But the overall trends are extremely promising for McCain. The problem is that the Iraq War has slipped dramatically in importance as an issue in the campaign. The economy and health care are now the top concerns of the voter. And Obama scores much higher than McCain in both categories.

Nevertheless, it is clear the next president will have, if not a mandate, at least enough political backing to see things through to some kind of honorable end in Iraq.

That is, if they choose to make that their goal.