Dems Criticize Bush on Security
May 28, 2003
The Democrats have devised a dubious plan for attacking President George W. Bush heading into the 2004 campaign season.
The Democrat candidates for president have almost exclusively used their political campaigns as a platform for questioning and criticizing President Bush on the issues of the day.
First it was tax cuts. They were portrayed by the Democrats as "tax breaks for the wealthiest among us" and lead to enormous deficits. They kicked and screamed until they cut President Bush's tax cut by more than half. Nevertheless, a $350 billion tax cut was passed and the Democrats couldn't do anything to stop it!
By failing to stop tax cuts from passing through both houses of Congress, the Democrats have moved on to other issues they might be able to take away from the Republicans. This time, though, they are messing with the greatest strength of President Bush and the Republican Party. I am referring to national security and leadership. The Democrats are barking up the wrong tree on this!
Rather than offering any substantive ideas or explaining the differences they have between themselves on the issue, the Democrat presidential candidates have declared open season on President Bush and his handling of the war on terrorism and homeland security.
Republicans have always been viewed by the American people as stronger on issues of national security than the Democrats.
The following direct attacks against President Bush and his handling of national security show just how desperate the Democrats have become in their attempts to narrow the gap on this vital issue:
"[W]e will not win the White House unless we make it clear to the American people that we will keep them safe and how we will keep them safe."
Senator John Edwards
"And the fact is they're not going to choose anyone who sends a message that is other than strength on defense and homeland security."
Senator Joe Lieberman
"What activists like Dean call the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party is an aberration: the McGovern-Mondale wing, defined principally by weakness abroad...lost 49 states in two elections, and transformed Democrats from a strong national party into a much weaker regional one. The real tradition of the Democratic Party is grounded in...standing up for a strong national defense and for America's interests in the world..."
Democratic Leadership Council Memo
Honestly, the Democrats have every reason to be afraid of Republicans on the issue of national security.
Since September 11, 2001, President Bush and the Republicans have passed many important security measures designed to protect the United States against future attacks. An open debate on policy differences on security issues would be productive, but Democrats have already contradicted the very legislation that they used to support just so they can be against President Bush.
Democrats "are trying to strengthen their own image on an issue on which Democrats have long been seen as weak by many Americans," Steven Thomma wrote in his article entitled "Bush Criticized On Homeland" that was published in The Philadelphia Inquirer on March 19, 2003.
Here are a few more examples of what the Democrat presidential candidates are saying about security issues:
Sen. John Kerry (D-MA)
"Nor has the Bush administration done enough to enhance security at home, according to Kerry ... 'The priorities and choices of this administration are wrong,' he said."
Sen. John Edwards (D-NC)
"We should not cede this issue to a party and a president whose idea of homeland security is plastic wrap and duct tape."
Sen. Bob Graham (D-FL)
"[T]his Administration has ignored homeland security in all but name while it focused all its energy on Iraq."
Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-CT)
"Our states and localities also need more support. More funding. And more leadership from the President on down."
Rep. Dick Gephardt (D-MO)
"[T]his administration has let America down in the area of homeland security. ... We are vulnerable to future attacks because this administration has not done its job, and has not increased our ability to have homeland security."
Gov. Howard Dean (D-VT)
"[W]e have a president who talks tough on homeland security but is strangling the cities and the towns and not giving them the money that's necessary to protect them ..."
One of the reasons the Democrats are bombarding President Bush on this issue is his incredibly high approval ratings on national security issues. Several recent polls show Bush doing extremely well:
- A recent Washington Post/ABC News Poll shows that 72% of Americans trust President Bush in his handling of the war on terrorism compared to 21% for the Democrats.
- A poll taken by CBS News/The New York Times show that 58% of Americans believe the Republicans are more likely to make the right decisions regarding terrorism. Only 18% of respondents chose the Democrats.
- Another CBS News/New York Times Poll Shows that 89% of Americans think the Bush administration has made progress in protecting the country against terrorism.
The Democrats are hedging their bets on making headway on this issue because they know it could very well cost them any chance of defeating the Republicans and George W. Bush in 2004. But I'm confident this desperate Democrat strategy won't work!
Of course, the Democrats will continue to hammer domestic issues by linking tax cuts to rising deficits, but even that may backfire on them. There are several positive signs that the economy will rebound by the end of the year. That will send the Democrat Party into a tizzy! I can't wait!
Brace yourselves because the battle has only just begun.