Friday, September 05, 2008

Sarah Barracuda on the attack

The following is from Fox News Embed Producers:

CEDARBURG, WI — Gov. Sarah Palin embraced her new role as the attack dog Friday, ripping Barack Obama for his failure to support the Iraq surge.

She lobbed the first missile of the general election during an outdoor rally in the town center of Cedarburg, just outside Milwaukee, in response to comments Obama made on the O’Reilly Factor Thursday. He told FNC that the surge had succeeded beyond his “wildest dreams,” but refused to say he was wrong for not initially embracing it. (Full transcript after the jump)

“Just last night Senator Obama finally broke and brought himself to admit what all the rest of us have known for quite some time and that’s thanks to the skill and valor of our troops the surge in Iraq has succeeded,” Palin told more than 8,000 voters gathered to hear the now-official GOP ticket. “I guess when you turn out to be profoundly wrong on a vital national security issue maybe its comforting to pretend that everyone else was wrong too.”

The Alaska governor also repeated some of her greatest hits from her convention speech Wednesday night, again asserting that being “a small town mayor is sorta like a community organizer only you have actual responsibilities,” and that small town residents are “always proud” to be Americans.

Palin praised McCain as a politician who has walked the walk. “Among politicians, there is the idealism of high-flown speechmaking with endless talk about great things and then there is the idealism of of leaders like John McCain who actually do great things,” she said.

For his part, McCain stuck to his change rhetoric from his Thursday night and tried to be more subtle in his contrasts with Obama. He also lavished praise on Palin, calling her the “most marvelous runningmate in the history of the nation.”

“We have faced challenges before. We can do this and we will do this and don’t believe those who tell us that we cant. That’s not America and that’s not the American people,” McCain said–returning to his 2000 election populist rhetoric. “These are tough times. Today, the jobs report is another reminder these are tough times–tough times in Wisconsin, tough times in Ohio, tough times all over America. You are worried about keeping your jobs and finding a new one, struggling to put food on the table, staying in your home. All you have ever asked of government is to stand on your side, not in your way and that is what I intend to do.”

Obama-O’Reilly excerpt:

O’REILLY: I think you were desperately wrong on the surge, and I think you should admit it to the nation that now we have defeated the terrorists in Iraq, and the Al Qaeda came there after we invaded, as you know. We defeated them.

OBAMA: Right.

O’REILLY: If we didn’t, they would have used it as a staging ground. We’ve also inhibited Iran from controlling the southern part of Iraq by the surge, which you did not support. So why won’t you say, “I was right in the beginning. I was wrong about that”?

OBAMA: If you listen to what I’ve said, and I’ll repeat it right here on this show, I think that there’s no doubt that the violence is down. I believe that that is a testimony to the troops that were sent and General Petraeus and Ambassador Crocker. I think that the surge has succeeded in ways that nobody anticipated, by the way, including President Bush and the other supporters. It has gone very well, partly because of the Anbar situation and the Sunni awakening, partly because of the Shia military. Look…

O’REILLY: But if it were up to you, there wouldn’t have been a surge.

OBAMA: Look…

O’REILLY: No, no, no, no.

OBAMA: No, no, no…

O’REILLY: If it were up to you, there wouldn’t have been a surge.

OBAMA: No, no, no.

O’REILLY: You and Joe Biden, no surge.

OBAMA: Hold on a second, Bill. If you look at the debate that was taking place, we had gone through five years of mismanagement of this war that I thought was disastrous. And the president wanted to double down and continue on an open-ended policy that did not create the kinds of pressure on the Iraqis to take responsibility and reconcile.

O’REILLY: But it worked. It worked. Come on.

OBAMA: Bill, what I’ve said is - I’ve already said it succeed beyond our wildest dreams.

O’REILLY: Why can’t you say, “I was right in the beginning, and I was wrong about the surge”?

OBAMA: Because there’s an underlying problem where what have we done. We have reduced the violence.


OBAMA: But the Iraqis still haven’t taken responsibility, and we still don’t have the kind of political reconciliation. We are still spending, Bill, $10 to $12 billion a month.

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