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The First Cut

As long as there is a reasonable alternative, I will not vote for a presidential candidate who supported the disastrous Iraq War at its inception.

The reason is simple: I want a President with good foreign policy instincts. Iraq War supporters were wrong, terribly wrong.

Contrary to popular belief, there are many prominent Democrats who opposed the Iraq War all along, including many who voted against it in Congress. I’ll start with the ones who are running for President or who are plausible candidates. First on the list is Barack Obama. In 2002 he attended an anti-war rally in Chicago and said:

I am not opposed to all wars. I'm opposed to dumb wars… You want a fight, President Bush? Let's finish the fight with Bin Laden and al-Qaeda…

Works for me. Next up is Al Gore. His position on the Iraq War was complex and difficult to reduce to buzz words. See this speech he gave in September, 2002. I would summarize his position as “Fight Al-Qaeda first, and only go into Iraq with broad international support.” I can’t give him the full-throated support I would give Barack Obama, but he was closer to the anti-Iraq-War side than most.

The following potential Democratic candidates voted for the war in Congress, so they are easily eliminated: Christopher Dodd, John Edwards, Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, and Joe Lieberman. (By the way, I don’t buy the argument that they only “authorized” Bush to go to war. Authorizing George W. Bush to invade Iraq is like authorizing Dick Cheney to shoot something.) The honor roll on the “NAY” side includes among others Barbara Boxer, Russ Feingold, Bob Graham, Dennis Kucinich, and Nancy Pelosi. Among the latter group, Dennis Kucinich is currently running for President. Ron Paul is a Republican who voted against the war, and he has formed an exploratory committee. If the Republicans nominated him, he would get my consideration.

Tom Vilsack and Bill Richardson were both governors when the Iraq War started, so they never had to make a roll call vote. If anyone has evidence that either of them took a firm position against the war, I would be curious to see it.

On the basis of what I know now, Barack Obama has my support. Al Gore coming in would make things more complicated. He is close enough to the anti-Iraq-War side that I would have to consider his impressive resume. Left with no other choice, I am prepared to cast a protest primary vote for Dennis Kucinich. (The key word there being primary.)

Lest anyone try to make me eat my words later, note this condition: I will choose among the reasonable alternatives. If neither of the major parties nominates a candidate who opposed the Iraq War, and there is no plausible third-party candidate who makes the cut, I will have to choose the lesser of the two evils. This person would most likely be the Democratic candidate.

Finally, you may wonder why I am not voting for the person with the best plan to get out of Iraq. Admittedly, that is a more relevant issue at this point. Unfortunately, I don't see anyone presenting a brilliant plan to resolve the current disaster. If one comes along, that might change my thinking.

Posted by Woody Mena at January 30, 2007 8:36 AM
Comments
Comment #205765

Unless the opposition candidate is more likely to take us into another one like it.

Posted by: David R. Remer at January 30, 2007 8:57 AM
Comment #205770

With such a policy, if I were running for president, you couldn’t vote for me!

The better way to go about things is to judge what they’ve done since Iraq was generally acknowledged to be a mistake.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 30, 2007 9:14 AM
Comment #205772

Stephen,

Sorry, Stephen, you can’t count on my vote. ;)

So I should pick the candidate with 20/20 hindsight?

The problem is that in our current political culture voting for war is always the safe vote. I want to try, in my tiny way, to change the thinking in Congress when the next war vote comes up.

Posted by: Woody Mena at January 30, 2007 9:29 AM
Comment #205773


Although Bush definately wanted to go to war with Iraq, I think there is a possibility that even he was snookered by the Cheney evidence. the majority of Americans were for the war before they were against it. I don’t think being against the war automatically means a person would be an effective president. I admire Kucinich as a politician and many of his stands on issues but, I don’t think he would make an effective president.

Posted by: jlw at January 30, 2007 10:06 AM
Comment #205776

Again, Woody, another writer is ignoring the fact that going to in Iraq to remove Saddam Hussein from power due to his actions (bucking world community, torture and murder of his own citizens, supporting international terrorism, continual threats against the US, shooting at US/UK planes, etc) and the protracted peacekeeping mission in Iraq after the war was completed are two different things

The removal of Saddam was a huge success. The handling of everything in Iraq AFTER that was a bungled mess of high hopes and shattered dreams, along with the deaths of thousands of Americans.

I guess myself I would vote for the one who understand that you have to take action against brutal dictators and regiems (Sudan for instance) and against getting involved in peacekeeping missions without UN direction.

The very sad part of this story is that the UN did offer, after Saddam was removed from power, to come in and take over the peacekeeping mission. This administration said NO. That was the biggest mistake I’ve seen in a president in decades…

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 30, 2007 10:21 AM
Comment #205779

jlw,

No, I don’t think Kucinich would be an effective President either. But I think he would deserve a protest vote if Obama dropped and no one else who opposed the war came in.

Rhinehold,

You raise a good point. The problem is that anyone outside the administration can say they supported the war but say they opposed details of the execution. Even John McCain says that. And I don’t think you can surgically remove toppling Saddam from the aftermath.

Posted by: Woody Mena at January 30, 2007 10:44 AM
Comment #205783

Woody,

Then you would have to include all of the events leading up to the invasion in 2003, including the handling of Iraq by Clinton, his assertions that there were WMD and his making regeime change in Iraq a national policy.

I do think a large majority of people agree that the aftermath of the war was handled wrong. I also think we should be focusing on that agreement instead of the issue of invasion which was, at the time, a very hard decision for most people to make, when all aspects were taken into account.

By trying to tie the two together you are alienating a lot of people, IMO, who’s only real fault was trusting in this administration to get the after-invasion right. I don’t fault Hillary for that (I have a whole other long list of things for her…) or even John Kerry. In fact, I think if John Kerry had been able to intelligently accentuate this point during the 2004 election he would have been victorious.

If many on the left are claiming that they are truely wanting to ‘heal the divide’ and bring the country together again, I really think that focusing on this large common ground is much more positive than trying to keep the wedge issue of the initial removal of Saddam in the forefront.

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 30, 2007 11:02 AM
Comment #205784

Oh yes, let’s all vote for the person(s) in Congress who voted against the U.N. Resolutions. We need not consider any governor as they did not have a vote in congress. We want for President one who is perceived as correct on one vote. We need as our chief executive a candidate who has never been responsible for a budget, one with no business experience, and one who has managed nothing more demanding than what clothes to wear. Never mind all the other pressing issues our nation faces. Let’s all become one-issue voters. That will fix everything. Let’s be absoutely certain that our next President never goes to war unless we are invaded. We need someone in the White House that is not influenced by overwhelming evidence and cares not for proactive decisions. We require a President who will wait until the New York Times and others decide we must act to protect ourselves. Wonderful thinking.

Posted by: Jim at January 30, 2007 11:23 AM
Comment #205790

Rhinehold,

Again, Woody, another writer is ignoring the fact that going to in Iraq to remove Saddam Hussein from power due to his actions (bucking world community, torture and murder of his own citizens, supporting international terrorism, continual threats against the US, shooting at US/UK planes, etc) and the protracted peacekeeping mission in Iraq after the war was completed are two different things

Definitively. Clearly only first was planned, propaganded and budgeted by Bushies.

They wanted SO much their war with Saddam they can’t even think about anything else. Like peace.

PS: the famous Saddam threat against US goes pshhh years ago. Didn’t got the Iraq Survey Team memo?

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at January 30, 2007 12:01 PM
Comment #205793

You can be right for the right reasons, wrong for the right reasons, wrong for the right reasons, or simply wrong all the way around.

If a police officer shoots someone who turns out to have been brandishing a water pistol at civilians, do we punish him and promote the officer who sat in his car munching on doughnuts while the whole thing went down?

I think Bush was right to remove Saddam, even if some of the reasons used turned out to be wrong and a lot of mistakes were made along the way and are still being made. I voted for Gore and then Kerry for other reasons entirely and am no Bush supporter.

In any case, I don’t think anybody running for president in 08 is going to be saying that Bush was right, the war was rightly handled, and nothing should or could have been done differently. Perhaps people who supported the war originally shouldn’t be trusted to even vote? That would knock off the majority of us.

I could support somebody who was either for or against the war in its early stages, depending on their reasons for doing so. There are some who were against it for good reasons, and I can respect that. But there are some who were against it for terrible reasons. There were many—both here and abroad—who thought that Saddam was developing WMD but thought we shouldn’t do anything about it, or ever respond to any threat.

There were many (mostly internationally) who liked the thought of Saddam with WMD because it would threaten Israel and others. Does that mean that they should be praised, that they’re of presidential quality? I don’t think so.

Posted by: Jason at January 30, 2007 12:08 PM
Comment #205798

Jim,

You are putting a lot of words in my mouth. I have no problem with governors. That’s why I asked about Richardson and Vilsack.

Actually, neither of the candidates I highlighted (Obama and Gore) were in Congress when the war started. But they did make strong public statements against the war. If any governors did, too, I’d love to hear about it.

Rhinehold,

The reason Kerry didn’t try to make your point is because it would have sounded like he was suckered. Cue tape of George Romney saying he was “brainwashed”.

I am happy to heal the divide come general election time. But I have no problem voting my conscience in the primaries.

Posted by: Woody Mena at January 30, 2007 12:22 PM
Comment #205800

Jason,

There were many—both here and abroad—who thought that Saddam was developing WMD but thought we shouldn’t do anything about it, or ever respond to any threat. There were many (mostly internationally) who liked the thought of Saddam with WMD because it would threaten Israel and others.

I’ve no source to back it (yet), but my feeling ATM was that many people internationally thought we WASN’T sure enough Saddam was developing WMD and, before resorting to force against him, we SHOULD had waited a clear proof he was.

Which was never found.

But your mileage may warry.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at January 30, 2007 12:27 PM
Comment #205803

Philippe,

Yes, there were some who felt the way you describe. However, the fact that Saddam was obvious in his intentions to hide ‘something’ from the inspectors made it hard to listen to that view when his support of terrorism and desire to harm the US (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/3819057.stm).

Of course, I’m glad he wasn’t. But it was his own actions that led people to believe what they did. He had every opportunity to prevent the invasion, over a twelve year period, and refused.

You can continue to hate the US all you want, but if you were in those same circumstances I wonder if your government wouldn’t do the same thing?

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 30, 2007 12:34 PM
Comment #205813

Woody - You quoted Barack Obama as saying:

“I am not opposed to all wars. I’m opposed to dumb wars… You want a fight, President Bush? Let’s finish the fight with Bin Laden and al-Qaeda…”

If Mr Obama can casually disconnect BL and al-Q from the present conflict he denies reality, and is not qualified for the nation’s highest office.


Posted by: Seminole 6i at January 30, 2007 1:03 PM
Comment #205816


Any candidate that can casually disconnect Cheney/BP/ExxonMobil love triangle from the present conflict he denies reality and is not qualified for the nation’s highest office.

Posted by: jlw at January 30, 2007 1:18 PM
Comment #205818

Woody:

I am with you 100%. The fact that Obama was against the war is one of the big reasons I am for him.

Those who were against the war with Iraq were not against war in general. They wanted to fight Al Qaeda, the terrorists who attacked us. They thought it ridiculous to take away our troops from the real war in order to embark on a mission to transform the Middle East by attacking Iraq.

Posted by: Paul Siegel at January 30, 2007 1:30 PM
Comment #205829

Woody,
Your vote is hard to capture. Those running for president will be better served to worry about the low hanging fruit - and they will.

Posted by: Schwamp at January 30, 2007 2:34 PM
Comment #205832

Woody,

I agree with your assertion that those who authorized the war do not deserve our vote. We knew the war was based on lies before our soldiers stepped foot in Iraq. Those members of Congress, with way more resources and connections couldn’t see through the run up to war? They were willing to gamble 3,440 American lives on their reelection in 06 or Presidential run in 08. That’s disturbing to me. What about the soldiers who are horribly wounded? The tens of thousands of dead Iraqi’s? The hundreds of billions of tax payer money?
Maybe we can vote for the candidate who appeals to the everyday man. The candidate who is simple, moral and seems confident. A man who clears his own brush. A church going, tough as nails, decider kinda guy. A candidate who isn’t familiar with geeky “nucular” power, “internets”, and the glogal warming myth. It worked out so well last time.
Republican voters do some research this time. Don’t vote for the guy with the best hair. Don’t vote for the guy just because he hunts. Ask Cheney’s buddy. Vote for a president, not someone you’d like to get drunk with and go cow tipping.

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at January 30, 2007 2:43 PM
Comment #205838

Andre…I agree, but where do we find another Reagan?

Posted by: Jim at January 30, 2007 3:01 PM
Comment #205853

Actually Woody,
Right now, I’m more concerned about who wants take us to war with Iran.

I totally agree the war in Iraq was and is a major mistake, however I don’t want to conpound this mistake by making more. I am more interested in how we get out of Iraq, and staying away from Iran than I am the past. Highsight is 20/20, but only if one uses it to improve the future.

Posted by: Linda H. at January 30, 2007 4:29 PM
Comment #205855
Yes, there were some who felt the way you describe. However, the fact that Saddam was obvious in his intentions to hide ‘something’ from the inspectors made it hard to listen to that view when his support of terrorism and desire to harm the US (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/3819057.stm).

What would you have expected from a loomy dictator!?
Since when we give more credit to an ever bragging dictator claims than to our own intelligence people, as it was done in Iraq War?

Aren”t we supposed to be smarter than that? Otherwise, why these huge and expensive spy network worldwide?!?

We *could* have wait for actual proof he had a WMD program. After all, having a program is not the same as having the actual WMD operational capability, in particular the long range vehicule (same is true for NK and yet-to-be-proven Iran nukes programs), which offer a larger enough window for action as soon as the proof is there.

That was the position regarding Iraq many were pushing. France happened to be the more vocale of all, but it doesn’t mean they weren’t sharing the french position. Many were in fact glad that France did it, so they could avoid angering officially the US.

Of course, I’m glad he wasn’t. But it was his own actions that led people to believe what they did.

I disagree. It was his own actions *and* voluntary blindly ignoring every intelligence memos discrediting his bragger claims that led people to believe what they did.

He had every opportunity to prevent the invasion, over a twelve year period, and refused.

So do we. It take two to go war.

You can continue to hate the US all you want,

I’m not confusing your country and its people with its government. Which, indeed, I hate for the damage his policy have done on both world stability and your own country world status.

… but if you were in those same circumstances I wonder if your government wouldn’t do the same thing?

Dunno. I guess it’s great my country is NOT having the most powerfull military so me and its government is nowhere in such abusive unilateralism tentation.
I also think having a too huge Military Complex is an issue americans must fix one day, the sooner the better. There is clearly too much people in the US who actually needs for their living your country be in open conflict and/or fearfull of some world part.


Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at January 30, 2007 4:35 PM
Comment #205902

Woody
Any thoughts about Vilsack?

What we need is an FDR. Read an interesting column,Krugman perhaps. His point was that civility comes after. The Reps,as the party of the elite. hated FDR. He claimed to be happy to have their hatered as he rammed through the New Deal that saved the nation.Civility did not return until after and the Reps that were left began to move to supporting it. The last 12 years or so have been anti-New Deal. Time to turn them back and restore it with maybe some improvments like single payer healthcare. Ok, so where is our FDR.?

Posted by: BillS at January 30, 2007 9:19 PM
Comment #205921

Woody, You raise good points and make me rethink John Edwards, who I like, otherwise. Thanks for the post.

Posted by: gergle at January 30, 2007 11:12 PM
Comment #205933

For the Presidency of the United States of America

By Marc Emery, Publisher, Cannabis Culture Magazine, Congress Watch
This piece is an advance release from The Activist Issue, March-April 2007, CC Magazine

Two outstanding Congressmen from the House of Representatives are seeking the nomination of their parties for the Presidency of the United States in the November 2008 election.

Ron Paul, a family physician representing the Gulf Coast region of Texas around Galveston, is seeking the Republican nomination. Ron Paul was rated by Cannabis Culture Magazine as the #1 Congressman of the last decade, far and away the #1 Republican in the House of Representatives, and the highest score of all 435 Members of the House of Representatives in Cannabis Culture’s Survey of the 109th Congress. Ron Paul voted against The Patriot Act, the Iraq War, every aspect of the Drug War. Ron Paul was one of only 5 Members of the House who voted against re-authorizing the budget of the Drug Czar John Walters office (ONDCP). Ron Paul co-sponsors many, many bills each year whose intent is to repeal the drug war, repeal the intrusions of Big Brother. Ron Paul is incorruptible. He votes against any and all expansion of government authority.

Ron Paul is a libertarian Republican who constantly enrages the GOP (Grand Old Party – The Republicans) because he actually believes in a small federal government and sound fiscal policies. He’s anti-death penalty, anti-drug laws, anti-police state, anti-Patriot Act and anti-anything that’s not authorized by the Constitution. I admire him for his “principled anti-war stance,” while pro-abortion voters don’t need to worry about the obstetrician/gynecologist’s strong pro-life stance — he knows the federal government has no right to get involved in such stuff.

Contenders for the 2008 Republican nomination include prohibitionist heavyweights like for New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and Arizona Senator John McCain. Marijuana arrests rose from under 6,000 a year in New York City in the year before Giuliani became Mayor (1993) to over 62,000 arrests in 2001, the final year in his term-limited second term. Giuliani was America’s most rabid drug warrior and his views have not changed.

John McCain’s most recent job prior to becoming a politician in 1986 was as a brewery executive (his wife is the heir to Hensley & Co., the second largest Anhauser-Busch beer distributor in the USA). McCain has expressed the most hawkish positions on drug policy. On March 5, 2000, McCain told the Boston Globe he wants to increase penalties for selling drugs, supports the death penalty for drug kingpins, favors tightening security to stop the flow of drugs into the country, and wants to restrict availability of methadone for heroin addicts. He said he would push for more money and military assistance to drug-supplying nations such as Colombia.

McCain supports the following principles concerning illegal drugs:
Increase penalties for selling illegal drugs
Impose mandatory jail sentences for selling illegal drugs
Impose capital punishment for convicted international drug traffickers

Strengthen current laws dealing with non-controlled substances, including inhalants and commercially available pills
Increase funding for border security to stop the flow of illegal drugs into the US
*Source: Project Vote Smart, 1998, www.vote-smart.org Jul 2, 1998

John McCain has not moderated his views perceptibly.

There will be no better Republican seeking the GOP nomination than Ron Paul. And the contrast between Ron Paul and Republican front-runners Giuliani and McCain is very stark. Very opposite worlds. Of the other 7 Republicans who have announced “exploratory committees”, only Tom Tancredo, an iconoclast Representative from Colorado whose immigration policies have gotten him attention, supports state’s rights to medical marijuana.
Among the Republican Party candidates for President, only Ron Paul has voted against both the 2002 Iraq War Resolution and the funding of the war in the annual Appropriations Bill.

Ron Paul is a wonderful idealist, a prolific and intelligent writer and columnist, a true Man of the People who is completely devoted to the ideals of free men and women in a free society of bodily autonomy and freedom of choice. Ron Paul was rated the only Congressman with a perfect record of voting for the cannabis culture and against big government, the drug war and the war in Iraq. We must support Ron Paul for the Republican nomination for President. If you are so inclined, register as a Republican so you can support, campaign, and lobby other Republicans to make Ron Paul their choice for President in the primaries next year.


Dennis Kucinich was the third highest rated Congressman in our survey of the 109th Congress. Only Representatives Ron Paul and Barney Frank scored higher. Dennis Kucinich wants to decriminalize marijuana, curtail the powers of the Drug Czar, end the War in Iraq immediately. He has co-sponsored many bills that seek to amend the slew of prohibitionist legislation that has come out of Congress over the last decade. Dennis Kucinich is a thoughtful and intelligent man who gives many speeches and articulates his many messages well. Not coincidentally, Dennis Kucinich and Ron Paul co-sponsor and co-operate on many amendments and bills to reign in the US federal government. His campaign for the Democratic Nomination for President is at www.kucinich.us

Certainly Dennis Kucinich, like Ron Paul, is a long-shot for his Party’s nomination. The two leading contenders for the Democratic Party nomination are New York Senator Hilary Clinton and Illinois Senator Barack Obama. Other announced Democrats in the race for their party’s nomination include Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack, New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, Delaware Senator Joe Biden, Connecticutt Senator Chris Dodd, North Carolina Senator John Edwards. Kucinich is the only Democratic contender for President in 2008 who actually voted against the Iraq War and its funding. Senators Biden, Edwards, Clinton, Dodd, all voted YES on the 2002 Iraq War Resolution, while Senator Obama has voted to finance the war since he has been in the Senate. Among the Democratic Party candidates for President, only Dennis Kucinich has voted against both the 2002 Resolution and the funding of the war.

Barack Obama has voted to finance the Iraq War while speaking against it, which shows equivocation. As to his views on drug use, following is a passage he wrote about his own marijuana and other illicit drug use in his 1996 book:

“I got high for just the opposite effect, something that could push questions of who I was out of my mind, something that could flatten out the landscape of my heart, blur the edges of my memory. I had discovered that it didn’t make any difference whether you smoked reefer in the white classmate’s sparkling new van, or in the dorm room of some brother you’d met down at the gym, or on the beach with a couple of Hawaiian kids who had dropped out of school and now spent most of their time looking for an excuse to brawl. You might just be bored, or alone. Everybody was welcome into the club of disaffection. And if the high didn’t solve whatever it was that was getting you down, it could at least help you laugh at the world’s ongoing folly and see through all the hypocrisy and bullshit and cheap moralism.”
*Source: Dreams from My Father, by Barack Obama, p. 87 Aug 1, 1996

There’s insight in those remarks. On The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Senator Obama said his youthful marijuana use was a “mistake”, but he didn’t seem negatively affected by the experience. In fairness to Senator Obama, he doesn’t appear to be a man who has a mean streak or a dominator complex, and that bodes well.


New York Senator Hilary Clinton is not on record as saying anything against prohibition. Considering she is from New York, of the infamous Rockefeller Laws, and she has almost no drug law reform mentions in 6 years in the US Senate, it’s clear drug-law reform is not on her agenda.

In the 2004 campaign, this magazine endorsed Dennis Kucinich for the Democratic Party nomination for President. A former Cleveland Mayor now representing the 10th District of Ohio, Kucinich spoke well and often about the misguided drug war. During the 2004 campaign, Loretta Nall had the opportunity to interview Rep. Kucinich over the course of that campaign and became one of his consultants on drug policy reform. Loretta has assured me she will be campaigning for Kucinich in 08.

Representative Kucinich is now Chairman of a Congressional Oversight Sub-Committee with the broadest oversight authority of any subcommittee in the federal government, with jurisdiction over all Domestic Policy in the United States. In fact, Kucinich has oversight of the Drug Czar’s office, the Office of the National Drug Control Policy.

Americans in the cannabis culture must talk up and gather momentum for Dennis Kucinich and Ron Paul. 2007 will be all about sorting the contenders from the pretenders. The internet can be very useful, please promote Dennis Kucinich For President and Ron Paul For President on your myspace, blog or other cyberspace media. Nothing beats talking to people about getting involved in perhaps the most important election ever! Ideally, our dream election would be Dennis Kucinich(P) & Maxine Waters(VP) on the Democratic ticket vs. Ron Paul(P) & Dana Rohrabacher(VP) on the Republican ticket. Maxine Waters is a great Congresswoman from California who was rated in our survey among the top ten Representatives. Ohio-California, good state mix, two of the top liberals in the House with outstanding credentials for honesty and integrity. Ron Paul and Dana Rohrabacher are the #1 and #2 top rated Republican Representatives in the House (by CC #63) , and both co-sponsor bills to provide state rights to medical marijuana and other drug-law reform bills. These two also have impeccable credentials and are untainted by lobbyists, greed, corruption. Texas-California is good state mix for a ticket.

Both tickets would feature highly principled seasoned legislators with very clear agendas. The citizens would really hear some ideas in that Presidential campaign!

Contribute money to the campaigns of both, money is essential in gathering any kind of momentum. Buy bumper stickers, T-shirts, buttons, posters and put these promotional items to regular use. Get Ron Paul For President or Dennis Kucinich for President stickers, posters, and handouts made to be given out on campus, at Peace rallies, 4/20, Global Marijuana March, summer festivals, everywhere! It’s a long grueling 20 month campaign and this may be the most important Presidential primary season ever coming up!

Posted by: Marc Emery at January 31, 2007 12:21 AM
Comment #205949
Ron Paul is a libertarian Republican who constantly enrages the GOP…

I guess I don’t need to worry about whether to vote for him in the general election.

Posted by: Woody Mena at January 31, 2007 8:26 AM
Comment #205950

Linda,

Re getting out of Iraq:

I did leave the door open for a candidate with a brilliant Iraq exit strategy (but not holding my breath)

Re staying out of Iran:

Usually, past behavior predicts future behavior.

Posted by: Woody Mena at January 31, 2007 8:28 AM
Comment #206623

Politicians by and large do what’s expedient. The Dems who now claim they were suckered by the “evidence” are lying to cover their butts. They knew at the time the “evidence” was bogus. I have never been so disappointed by the Democratic Party as I was by their vote on the war powers act. Those who voted for it obviously felt it was the politically correct way to vote even if they didn’t feel that going to war was the wisest thing to do.

I am not the most politically astute person, but even I could see through the “evidence” at the time. I recall very clearly that there were UN weapons inspectors on the ground in Iraq, who hadn’t found any evidence of WMDs. They were asking for more time. I had two questions at the time:

1. If they need more time, why not give it to them? Was the threat from the WMD’s so imminent that we couldn’t wait for them to do what we sent them there to do?

2. If we supposedly knew where these WMDs were, as Cheney, Rumsfeld and Powell claimed at the time, why not simply inform the weapons inspectors of the location so they could go corroborate our “evidence”? If little old me could ask those questions at the time, why couldn’t our elected representatives?

I agree with Woody. Those with any fortitude, with any sense of right and wrong, with any belief that war should come only as a last resort and that diplomacy should be given every chance of working—those are the people with the character we now need in the White House. Everyone else, including those who now claim they were hoodwinked by false evidence, is a coward and a liar.

Posted by: Stan at February 4, 2007 7:30 PM
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