Live Blogging the Iraq Town Hall, Part 4

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Obama: First question, “What is the best and fastest way to get out of Iraq?” Obama’s response, and this is the first sentence out of his mouth, “As you know, I opposed this war from the start.” Says there is no military solution to the war; there is nothing American troops can do to win this thing.

Touts his “very specific” plan that forces the Sunnis and Shiites to find a political reconciliation. Also, redeployment of American troops should begin in May 2007 and end in March 2008. (Non-combat troops can remain.)

Says if Bush vetoes the recent war funding bill passed by the Democratic Congress (the one that includes a timetable for withdrawal), the Democrats should re-confront the president, multiple times if necessary. This echoes statements made by other candidates earlier.

Open dialogue with Syria and Iran, says BHO. Invokes the fact that Reagan called the Soviet Union “the evil empire” and yet met with them, because “power without diplomacy is a prescription for disaster.”

Observation: Despite his reputation, Obama is less fiery and probably less eloquent than Edwards today. Edwards really was a rhetorical rock star.

Good night everybody! MoveOn will have town halls on health care and global warming in the near future.

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This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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