The McCain Formula
Here's a revealing passage from his speech to the VFW Convention:
This [beginning the surge] was back when supporting America's efforts in Iraq entailed serious political risk. It was a clarifying moment. It was a moment when political self-interest and the national interest parted ways. For my part, with so much in the balance, it was an easy call. As I said at the time, I would rather lose an election than lose a war.
The clear implication is that someone who disagreed with McCain early last year could not have had a genuine reason to doubt that the surge would work and therefore could not have had a different view of the national interest. For McCain, it seems, everyone who disagreed with him was pursuing an unpatrotic selfishness - and only he was noble enough to "put country first." Good For Obama for challenging this today:
I have never suggested that Senator McCain picks his positions on national security based on politics or personal ambition. I have not suggested it because I believe that he genuinely wants to serve America's national interest. Now, it's time for him to acknowledge that I want to do the same.
Over to McCain, right?