Despite several media reports that Obama had decided to keep only 3,000 troops in the country next year, White House spokesman Jay Carney on Tuesday denied the president had reached any conclusion, stating "no decisions on troop levels have been made."
McCain, who was joined by Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) in a colloquy on the Senate floor, argued that that hard-won stability in Iraq could easily be squandered if Obama did not sustain at least 10,000 American boots on the ground
"I know we are broke, but the one thing we can’t afford after all this investment is to lose," Graham said. "I urge this administration to listen to our military leaders and finish this fight. It would be a tragedy of a tragedy for us to be inside the 10-yard line and fumble."
Lieberman also argued that the U.S. is on the brink of victory and that such a swift reduction from the current level of about 46,000 troops to 3,000 could be construed as a sign of weakness.
“I don’t want us to squander what we have won, and I am afraid we will if we leave only 3,000 troops there,” Lieberman said.