This is designed to tickle deficit hawks like yours truly (and if I believed it, it would):

“In the long-term, the only way to keep the budget balanced is successful reform of the large spending pressures in Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid,” the McCain campaign says in a policy paper to be released Monday.

“The McCain administration would reserve all savings from victory in the Iraq and Afghanistan operations in the fight against Islamic extremists for reducing the deficit. Since all their costs were financed with deficit spending, all their savings must go to deficit reduction.”

So we'll have "victory" in both Iraq and Afghanistan in the first term - with a peace dividend to balance the budget. Believe that if you want. I'll just note that the McCain and Obama campaigns are getting closer and closer on Iraq - as some of us predicted a while back. When McCain is promising a peace dividend, you can only hope his bluster about "victory" is about domestic politics, not the Middle East.

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