The following is a quote from Mr. Trump's statement. Is it grammatical to say "We should have never been in Iraq"? Shouldn't it be "We should never have been in Iraq"?

"We should have never been in Iraq,” Mr. Trump said. “They lied, they said there were weapons of mass destruction. There were none and they knew that there were none.”


1 Answer 1


Position of never is tricky and all the below sentences are correct. But in order of preference and idiomatic usage:

  1. We should never have been in Iraq.
  2. We never should have been in Iraq.
  3. We should have never been in Iraq.

The linked Ngram Viewer about should have and this one about would have seem to support the above order.

For further information, please see the related answer posted to the question in my comment above.

  • I would bet that never should'a is the winner by two lengths.
    – TimR
    Feb 16, 2016 at 12:03

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