You know, I don't miss Bill Clinton that much — except as compared to what came after him. And it's because telling the truth isn't exactly his strong point:
Instead, Bill said, the “fairy tale” is the idea that Obama has always opposed the war. “We went through 15 debates and the Obama campaign has made the argument that his relative lack of service in the Senate was not relevant because he had better judgment than the other Democrats on the Iraq War…” Bill said. “And I pointed out that he'd never been asked about his statements in 2004 that he didn't know how he'd have voted on the Iraq War, and that there was no significant difference between his position as President Bush's.”
Bill then speculated on what Obama might have meant at the time — perhaps he only disagreed with the conduct of the war, or how best to deal with it now. “The point is, it disproves the argument that he was always against it, everyone else was wrong and he was right…” Bill said. “I said, that story is a fairy tale, and that doesn't have anything to do with my respect for him as a person or as a political figure in this campaign.”
That is an absolute pea-soup fog of obfuscation. The differences between Hillary and Obama in 2002 — when it mattered — were night and day. And still Hillary refuses to apologize for her 2002 vote, instead spinning it as an attempt to avoid war, when everyone knew it was anything but.
Some of you have seen this video before, and I'm sorry to keep posting it, but it ought to be seen in reference to this. Here's Obama talking about Iraq in 2002. He pretty much nails the scenario.
And here's from his October 2002 speech against the war, when war skeptics were being roundly dismissed, mocked, and marginalized:
After September 11th, after witnessing the carnage and destruction, the dust and the tears, I supported this administration's pledge to hunt down and root out those who would slaughter innocents in the name of intolerance, and I would willingly take up arms myself to prevent such tragedy from happening again. I don't oppose all wars. And I know that in this crowd today, there is no shortage of patriots, or of patriotism.
What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz and other armchair, weekend warriors in this administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne.
What I am opposed to is the attempt by political hacks like Karl Rove to distract us from a rise in the uninsured, a rise in the poverty rate, a drop in the median income – to distract us from corporate scandals and a stock market that has just gone through the worst month since the Great Depression. That's what I'm opposed to. A dumb war. A rash war. A war based not on reason but on passion, not on principle but on politics.
Hillary, and many others who should have known better, fell for the politics. She still won't acknowledge it, and the people who surround her (Richard Holbrooke for one, and her husband) aren't exactly giving us reassurance that she's learned anything from it. Rather than cleanse themselves of the mud, they're trying to sling it at Obama.
Obama was right, and Hillary was wrong. There's just no way out of it.