“He’s not always right,” says Powerline, “but when he is, there is no one better to have at your side than John McCain.”

Powerline was referring to McCain’s piece in the New York Post on what really matters is Iraq:

“IRAQ is today in the throes of another critical moment in its post-Saddam history. There is both great hope and great difficulty, with a new constitution and an ongoing insurgency, with parliamentary elections in a month and violence plaguing many areas.
“At home, the American people wish to see us succeed in helping bring freedom and democracy to the Iraqi people, but express increased uncertainty among the way forward. Now is the last time we should send a message that withdrawing troops is more important than achieving success.

“Unfortunately, the Senate considered two amendments this week – one of which was approved with 79 votes – that did just that. In the version that passed, 2006 is designated as ‘a period of significant transition to full sovereignty . . . thereby creating the conditions for the phased redeployment of United States forces from Iraq.’

“These words are likely to be examined closely in Iraq, by both friends and enemies. They suggest that the Senate has its priorities upside down, and I voted to reject them.

“Anyone reading the amendment gets the sense that the Senate’s foremost objective is the draw-down of American troops. What it should have said is that America’s first goal in Iraq is not to withdraw troops, but to win the war. All other policy decisions we make should support, and be subordinate to, the successful completion of our mission.”

Don’t miss Bill Kristol‘s withering contempt for the me-tooism of Republicans who weren’t as willing as McCain (and 12 other Senate Republicans) to stand up for our policy in Iraq.