Unfortunately for John McCain, all the news about his campaign shake-up has overshadowed his stirring presentation before the U.S. Senate today in which he argued against retreating in Iraq. His remarks included a firm rebuke of Barbara Boxer, who suggested McCain pay more attention to polls showing Americans favor a retreat:
MCCAIN: The fact is, I do read the polls. And if the Senator from California had paid attention to my opening statement she would have known that I made it clear that I understand the frustration and the sorrow of the American people.
I also know that a lot of us are not driven by polls. A lot of us are driven by principle. And a lot of us do what we think is right no matter what the polls say.
Video over at the Corner.
All those conservatives who still support the surge strategy in Iraq, especially those who were critical of McCain for holding his ground on immigration, should give McCain a collective pat on the back for standing up for his beliefs at a time when other Republican Senators are doing the politically expedient thing.
Most of my criticisms of McCain have arisen from the fact that I don’t believe he’d make the best president in the field of options open to us, and as an observer, I think he’s been running a lousy campaign. With that said, and for all of his faults, McCain still is an American hero and a man of tremendous personal and political courage who deserves all of our respect.