McCain Tops Obama in Commander-in-Chief Test; Stays Competitive on Iraq

One reason McCain can push back on Iraq is his advantage as commander-in-chief a striking one, albeit perhaps not surprising given his military background. Seventy-two percent of Americans , even most Democrats say he'd be a good commander-in-chief of the military.

By contrast, fewer than half, 48 percent, say Obama would be a good commander-in-chief, a significant weakness on this measure.

Poll Finds 72 Percent of Americans Say McCain Would be Good Commander-in-Chief Americans divide evenly between Barack Obama and John McCain's approaches to the war in Iraq, and rate McCain much more highly on his abilities as commander-in-chief — key reasons the unpopular war isn't working more to Obama's advantage.

Despite broad, longstanding dissatisfaction with the war, just 50 percent of Americans prefer Obama's plan to withdraw most U.S. forces within 16 months of taking office.

Essentially as many, 49 percent, side with McCain's position — setting no timetable and letting events dictate when troops are withdrawn.