John McCain failed to beat George W. Bush’s sleaze machine in 2000 (when Karl Rove and the Bush camp spred the rumor around South Carolina that McCain’s adoptive Bangladesh daughter Bridget was in fact his biological daughter by a Black prostitute).
So he joined it.
Gradually over the last 7 or 8 years, McCain, once a self-professed straight-talking maverick, became the unofficial megaphone for the Bush White House’s trumped-up war in Iraq. He proudly claimed authorship of the 2007 “surge” of US troops in Iraq and long beat the drum for its neglected (or negligible) successes.
As a Presidential candidate, he repeatedly criticized his opponents (especially Democrat Barack Obama) even for thinking in terms of setting a timeline for pulling US troops out of Iraq, famously dubbing such a move as “legislating defeat.” In June of this year he appeared on The Today Show to say that withdrawing troops was “not too important.”
For some Americans, Iraq was one issue that gave McCain an advantage over Obama—expressing the hawkish sentiments that play well with a lot of the Home of the Brave.
So ageing fratboy Bush must not be able to stop himself from punking McCain, because yesterday the White House announced an agreement with Iraq to pull US troops from Iraq by 2011.
(Not that, in recent weeks, McCain hasn’t backtracked a bit on this issue himself. Just a month after his Today Show appearance, he stated that 16 months would be a “good timetable” for removing US forces from Iraq—this, six days after Iraq PM Nuri al-Maliki expressed support for Obama’s withdrawal plan—which was, um, to remove the troops within 16 months.)