Sunday, September 26, 2004
A valiant attempt: Democrat Sen. Joe Biden -- a John Kerry supporter -- went on "Fox News Sunday" this morning and made an admirable attempt to defend one of Kerry's more outrageous flip-flops.
Host Chris Wallace played two videos of dueling John Kerrys:
(Caption: Monday) Sen. John Kerry: The satisfaction that we take in his [Saddam Hussein] downfall does not hide this fact: We have traded a dictator for a chaos that has left America less secure.
(Caption: Dec. 16, 2003) Sen. John Kerry: To those who doubted whether Iraq or the world would be better off without Saddam Hussein, and those who believe today that we are not safer with his capture, don't have the judgement to be president or the credibility to be elected president of the United States.
WALLACE: Sen. Biden, how do you reconcile those two statements as anything more than saying what would get you the most votes at two different times.
BIDEN: Oh that's easy. There's nothing at all contradictory at the time. The assumption was when Saddam Hussein was knocked out that we'd act rationally and we'd manage the situation in Iraq that there wouldn't be chaos. And the fact of the matter is that what we have done, we have traded a dictator who, in fact no one wanted to stay there, happy they're gone, like to have him gone, thinks it's good we're gone and it's resulted in chaos because of the incredible missed management, as Dick Lugar said, of this president. That's a statement of fact. It's very, very good he's gone. Kerry's happy he's gone. Kerry would have done everything to get rid of him. But he would not have mismanaged and sent so many mixed signals that this administration has so that the end result is today, we have something close to chaos in that region. That's totally consistent.
WALLACE: First of all, the situation back last December, when he was saying this was bad, that's why Howard Dean was doing so we...
BIDEN: Nothing like this. It wasn't even remotely like this Chris, it wasn't even remotely like this ...
WALLACE: Well, forgive me, there were heavy casualties, that was why Howard Dean was doing so well.
BIDEN: Chris, Chris, there weren't. There's 700 casualties since he said that. 700 casualties since he said that, Chris. Over, probably somewhere on the order of six or 7,000 wounded since then Chris. Five, six or seven times the number of bombings Chris. Come on, as they say where I come from get real. It wasn't remotely the situation it is now. And at the time you had the international community saying they wanted the G8 and the neighbors to get together. I love Colin Powell, they weren't talking about anything massive back then...
Biden then continues to go further afield from the original point. But let's start at the end and move backwards. First the number of American casualties since Dec. 2003 is 606. Forty U.S. soldiers died in Dec. 2003 and Kerry's comments came on Dec. 16, so it's likely that fewer than 600 soldiers have died since Kerry's original statement.
Biden also misrepresents John Kerry's latest position on the Iraq War.
Kerry's happy he's gone. Kerry would have done everything to get rid of him.
Everything except actually go to war to remove him, Joe. Remember, "wrong war at the wrong time"? Ring any bells?
But all of this really takes away attention from Kerry's flip-flop.
It appears as though Biden is defending his position on Iraq -- but John Kerry doesn't share his position.
In Dec. 2003, John Kerry was supportive of the Iraq War and the caputure of Saddam Hussein -- as evidenced by his quote.
Today, Kerry's position isn't that the war has been mismanaged (though he would agree with that contention), but that we never should have gone in the first place.
That puts him squarely in the camp that he was criticizing nine months ago.
And not even Joe Biden can save him from his fecklessness.