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Monday, February 16, 2004

The core reason why I don't like Kerry
He's still defending his vote for the Iraq war:

GILBERT: Let me turn to you, Senator Kerry, because you said your vote wasn't a vote for what the president ultimately did. But you did vote to give him the authority, so do you feel any degree, any degree of responsibility for the war and its costs and casualties?

KERRY: This is one of the reasons why I am so intent on beating George Bush and why I believe I will beat George Bush, because one of the lessons that I learned -- when I was an instrument of American foreign policy, I was that cutting-edge instrument. I carried that M- 16.

I know what it's like to try to choose between friend and foe in a foreign country when you're carrying out the policy of your nation.

KERRY: And I know what it's like when you lose the consent and the legitimacy of that war. And that is why I said specifically on the floor of the Senate that what I was voting for was the process the president promised.

There was a right way to do this and there was a wrong way to do it. And the president chose the wrong way because he turned his back on his own pledge to build a legitimate international coalition, to exhaust the remedies of the United Nations in the inspections and to go to war as a matter of last resort.

Last resort means something to me. Obviously, it doesn't mean something to this president. I think it means something to the American people.

And the great burden of the commander in chief is to be able to look into the eyes of any parent or loved one and say to them, "I did everything in my power to prevent the loss of your son and daughter, but we had to do what we had to do because of the imminency of the threat and the nature of our security. "

I don't think the president passes that test.

GILBERT: But what about you? I mean, let me repeat the question. Do you have any degree of responsibility having voted to give him the authority to go to war?

KERRY: The president had the authority to do what he was going to do without the vote of the United States Congress. President Clinton went to Kosovo without the Congress. President Clinton went to Haiti without the Congress.

That's why we have a War Powers Act. What we did was vote with one voice of the United States Congress for a process. And remember, until the Congress asserted itself, this president wasn't intending to go to the United Nations. In fact, it was Jim Baker and Brent Scowcroft and others and the Congress who got him to agree to a specific process. The process was to build a legitimate international coalition, go through the inspections process and go to war as a last resort.

He didn't do it. My regret is not the vote. It was appropriate to stand up to Saddam Hussein. There was a right way to do it, a wrong way to do it.

My regret is this president chose the wrong way, rushed to war, is now spending billions of American taxpayers' dollars that we didn't need to spend this way had he built a legitimate coalition, and has put our troops at greater risk.

I'm sorry, Senator, but if you weren't aware in October 2002 that Bush was going to chose the "wrong way" and rush to war, you really aren't qualified to be a senator, much less president. And the reason we a have the unconstitutional War Powers Act is because of wussy senators like you. Sir.