CNN's Lou Dobbs claimed that "in what appears to be a complete reversal tonight, Senator [Barack] Obama says he's considering a trip now to Iraq." In fact, Obama has said on several occasions since last November that he is considering a trip to Iraq.
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On the June 16 edition of CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight, host Lou Dobbs asserted that "in what appears to be a complete reversal tonight, Senator [Barack] Obama says he's considering a trip now to Iraq." In fact, Obama discussed visiting Iraq as a presidential candidate last November and has reportedly said on several occasions since then that he is considering a trip to Iraq. Moreover, Dobbs did not provide any evidence of a "complete reversal" on Obama's part, which would mean that Obama had previously said he wasn't considering a trip to Iraq.
- On November 2, 2007, The New York Times reported:
Mr. Obama, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, visited Iraq in January 2006. Asked if that was his last visit, given how much events on the ground have changed since then, he jumped in before the question was finished, saying, ''Given how important this is, why haven't I gone back?''
''I'll be honest with you,'' he said. ''Part of it is that my schedule is such that the trips would be one or two days and would be centered around the Green Zone.''
He added: ''I suspect we will be going back. It probably won't be before Iowa, realistically speaking.'' The Iowa caucuses are scheduled for Jan. 3.
Contrary to Dobbs' suggestion that Obama committed a "complete reversal tonight," Obama has spoken of visiting Iraq several times previously:
- On May 28, The New York Times' Caucus blog reported:
Senator Barack Obama said today that he is considering visiting American troops and commanders in Iraq this summer. He declined an invitation from Senator John McCain to take a joint trip to Iraq, saying, "I just don't want to be involved in a political stunt."
In a brief interview here [Thornton, Colorado], Mr. Obama said his campaign was considering taking a foreign trip after he secures the Democratic presidential nomination. No details have been set, he said, but added: "Iraq would obviously be at the top of the list of stops."
- On May 29, the Associated Press reported:
Obama's campaign has been considering an overseas trip since last year to beef up his foreign policy credentials, but the extended fight for the Democratic nomination with Hillary Rodham Clinton has delayed those plans.
"A trip is under consideration but no final plans have been made," Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton said.
- On June 6, USA Today reported:
"I will be going to Iraq, I'm almost certain, before the election," said Obama, who has made withdrawing U.S. troops a priority of his platform. "One of my most important tasks is to deal effectively with the situation in Iraq, in Afghanistan and with the threat of terrorism generally."
From the June 16 edition of CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight:
DOBBS: Well, in what appears to be a complete reversal tonight, Senator Obama says he's considering a trip now to Iraq. The senator has faced sharp criticism from McCain's campaign and other Republicans for making only one trip to visit our troops.
The RNC website featuring a live streamer listing the days, hours, and minutes, and seconds since Senator Obama's only visit. An Obama foreign policy adviser now says the Republicans are just trying to distract attention from the failures of the Iraq war, and meanwhile, apparently the Republican ploy has worked. Senator Obama saying he will go to Iraq some time before the election.