Friday, October 08, 2004
"What are the Israeli people supposed to do? How can they continue to watch Israeli children killed by suicide bombers? Killed by terrorists. They have not only the right but the obligation to defend themselves."
- John Edwards
With a President Kerry, Israel will have to pass the global test - but we know that most nations consistently vote against Israel in UN resolutions.
During the debate, John Edwards tried to use his slick courtroom skills in order to run circles around Vice President Dick Cheney. Edwards kept reverting to campaign talking points about the credibility of the Bush Administration. Unfortunately for him, it's his campaign's credibility that should be questioned. Edwards threw as many false assertions as he could to see which ones would stick. The Galvin Opinion has compiled and examined Edwards statements. Here are the most egregious examples of how John Edwards did not level with the American people during Thursday night's debate with President Bush.
# 1: "And when they were asked why Richard Luger said because of the incompetence of the administration."
TRUTH: That is a LIE. Lugar did not talk of any Iraqi "mess" nor blame it on the Bush Administration's "incompetence." According to the Albany Democrat-Herald, In arguing that senior Republicans agreed with Kerry that "Iraq is a mess and getting worse,'' he quoted Sen. Richard G. Lugar, R-Ind., out of context when he said Lugar believed the situation was a result of administration "incompetence.''Lugar, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman, recently said incompetence was to blame not for the turmoil in Iraq, but for the fact that only $1 billion had been spent of the $18.4 billion that Congress provided for Iraq's reconstruction.
# 2: "What Paul Bremer said yesterday is they didnt have enough troops to secure the country."
TRUTH: That is a LIE, too. Paul Bremer has responded to how some Democrats used his comments at Michigan State against President Bush. In a NYTimes Op-Ed piece, that was a response to this week's brouhaha, Bremer said, "For the task before us now, I believe we have enough troops in Iraq. The press has been curiously reluctant to report my constant public support for the president's strategy in Iraq and his policies to fight terrorism. I have been involved in the war on terrorism for two decades, and in my view no world leader has better understood the stakes in this global war than President Bush."
# 3: "They also didnt have a plan to win the peace."
TRUTH: As John Edwards would say, not truuuue. If he doesn't think it's a plan what does he describe the June 30th hand-over of power, the role of Prime Minister Ayad Allawi and the elections scheduled for January? That sounds like a plan to me, a plan that is working.
# 4: "But we had Osama bin Laden cornered at Tora Bora. We had the 10th Mountain Division up in Uzbekistan available. We had the finest military in the world on the ground. And what did we do? We turned."
TRUTH: The fact is that no one knows where Osama bin Laden is, or has been, since 9/11. When he was believed to be in Tora Bora, the Americans commenced an immense bombing campaign. But, at the time, President Bush was criticized for the bombings because no one could definitively state that bin Laden was there. Now, John Edwards is positive that bin Laden was there. If Edwards is so positive about bin Laden's whereabouts, I would love for him to tell us where bin Laden is, now.
# 5: "He said, made mention of this global test. What John Kerry said is just as clear as day to anybody was listening. He said we will find terrorists where they are and kill them before they ever do harm to the American people, first. We will keep this country safe."
TRUTH: Notice that Edwards did not defend the Kerry's "global test." He only mentioned pre-emption, which is a Bush doctrine. Kerry has placed himself in the position that, if he were president, he wouldn't be able to defend America until he got the world's permission. Edwards failed to acknowledged that.
# 6: "And the reality is the part of Afghanistan, eastern Afghanistan where Osama bin Laden is is one of the hardest places to control and the most insecure. "
TRUTH: So, Edwards absolutely, positively places bin Laden in eastern Afghanistan, right now. Thanks for clearing that up, Senator. Perhaps we should ship you off to eastern Afghanistan since you are so sure of where he is at this moment.
# 7: "Were going to tell them the truth about whats happening. Were not going to suggest to them that things are going well in Iraq or anyplace else when in fact theyre not."
TRUTH: Telling the truth also means that you don't demoralize our soldiers by insinuating that they are losing a war. Telling the truth also means that you don't confused troops and voters with talk of a "mess" or "quagmire" in order to score political points. Edwards wants you to believe that fighting in Iraq should be easy.
# 8: "Were at $200 billion and counting."
TRUTH: We're at $120 billion and counting.
# 9: "[Kerry] laid out his plan for success in Iraq, made it clear that we were committed to success in Iraq.We have to be because we have troops on the ground there and because theyve created a haven for terrorists."
TRUTH: Who created the haven for terrorists, the troops or Bush-Cheney? Either way, Edwards is WRONG. He should think about who really created the haven for terrorists - I know one thing, it wasn't Americans.
# 10: "The reality is that John Kerry has consistently supported the very men that he served with in Vietnam and led, on the 87 billion. It was clear at the time of that vote that they had no plan to win the peace."
TRUTH: It's been established that Bush had a plan and the plan is being implemented. Because Edwards wanted to score political points on his campaign he voted against the $87 billion funding for the troops. Pathetic, really.
# 11: "We also thought it was wrong to have a $20 billion fund out of which seven and a half billion was going to go to a no-bid contract for Halliburton, the vice presidents former company."
TRUTH: It's a LIE to insinuate that Cheney is profiting from a sweetheart deal. The fact is that the indepdendent GAO has found that Halliburton is the only company equipped to handle the requirement of the Pentagon's contract.
# 12: "They didnt, by the way, just reject the allies going the lead up to the war, they also rejected them in the effort to do the reconstruction in Iraq."
TRUTH: Edwards is referring to allies like France and Germany. The fact is that countries like France were motivated by their Oil-for-Food bribes from Saddam to thwart any attempt to throw Saddam out of power. Even though French officials did their best to put American soldiers lives in danger, Edwards feels that is important that French companies benefit from the spoils of the Iraq war. Kerry said the same thing, last week.
# 13: "And by the way, if we need to we can take Iraqis out of Iraq to train them. If its not secure enough, its so dangerous on the ground that they cant be trained there, we can take them out of Iraq for purposes of training."
TRUTH: Where are you going to take them to, Club Med? Edwards complains about the cost of the war, how much is going to cost us by flying Iraqi trainees back and forth all over the world?
# 14: "They sent 40,000 American troops into Iraq without the body armor they needed."
TRUTH: Vice Chairman Of The Joint Chiefs Of Staff Gen. Peter Pace said "Every soldier and marine on the ground had body armor."
# 15: "While they were on the ground fighting they lobbied the Congress to cut their combat pay. This is the height of hypocrisy."
TRUTH: Oh, man. This is a BIG LIE. Check out the Pentagon press release of Aug 14, 2003. A pay increase for troops, worldwide, was set to expire. But, troops in Iraq and Afghanistan kept their pay increases.
# 16: "Its a continuation of at least insinuating that theres some connection between 9/11 and Saddam Hussein. Its not true."
TRUTH: President Bush himself declared to the press, from the Cabinet Room, that there was no connection between Saddam Hussein and 9/11.
# 17: "The vice president talks about there being a member or someone associated with Al Qaeda in Iraq. There are 60 countries who have members of Al Qaeda in them. How many of those countries are we going to invade?"
TRUTH: Exactly, Mr. Edwards. Al Qaeda is in many countries but you don't think it was in Iraq? Al Qaeda was even in the United States. The difference is Saddam Hussein; a man who praised 9/11, gave money to suicide bombers and created wars with his neighbors.
# 18: "First, the Israeli people not only have the right to defend themselves, they should defend themselves. They have an obligation to defend themselves."
TRUTH: Too bad John Kerry didn't feel the same way. Kerry spoke out against Israel's security fence that has done a fantastic job of keeping out the terrorists. Kerry spoke out in favor of the fence only after he was met with a firestorm of controversy and protest. F-l-i-p-f-l-o-p.
# 19: "What are the Israeli people supposed to do? How can they continue to watch Israeli children killed by suicide bombers? Killed by terrorists. They have not only the right but the obligation to defend themselves. "
TRUTH: With a President Kerry, Israel will have to pass the global test - but we know that most nations consistently vote against Israel in UN resolutions.
# 20: "by the way, theyre for outsourcing jobs."
TRUTH: Yeah, and Cheney is in favor of taking candy away from little kids, too. Another John Edwards LIE. He knowingly took out of context the recent remarks made by Labor Secretary, Elaine Chao and a council of economists.
# 21: "I want to make sure people hear that. Its a fundamental difference for with us. The administration says over and over that the outsourcing of millions of American jobs is good."
TRUTH: Yeah, we heard you already. And while you're at it, remind Americans that George W. Bush once opposed the death penalty for terrorists. Terrible, huh? Oh wait, John Kerry opposed the death penalty for terrorists. Whoops.
# 22: "You know, if you look at whats happened over the last four years we have gone from a $5-trillion projected surplus when George Bush took office to a $3-trillion projected deficit."
TRUTH: If you also look at what's happened the last four years, this president inherited a recession and we suffered the most devastating attack on our country that cost the lives of 3,000 of our fellow citizens. And, we engaged in 2 costly wars in Afghanistan and Iraq in order to make us safer from state-sponsored terrorism. Those are just little things that Edwards forgot about.
# 23: "We also want to close some corporate loopholes."
TRUTH: This coming from a man who used a loophole to get out of paying $600,000 in Medicare taxes. More on that, later.
# 24: "The country needs to know that under what they have put in place and want to put in place, they millionaires sitting by their swimming pool, collecting their statements to see how much money theyre making, make their money from dividends, pays a lower tax rate than the men and women who are receiving paychecks for serving on the ground in Iraq."
TRUTH: According to Robert Robb of the Arizona Republic, "Before the dividend check reaches the swimming pool, it is taxed as profit at the corporate level. That means that the true effective federal tax rate on dividend income, even with the Bush cut, is about 50 percent, at least twice the rate on middle-class wage income and even substantially more than the highest rate Kerry wants to reimpose on wage income for the relatively affluent.
An "entrepreneurial Democrat" ought to care about capital formation and be concerned about the dislocating effects of the double-taxation of dividend income. Instead, Kerry proposes to make those effects worse by eliminating the lower Bush tax rates on dividend and wage income for those making over $200,000 a year."
# 25: "We dont just value wealth, which they do. We value work in this country. And it is a fundamental value difference between them and us."
TRUTH: The problem with the Democrats is that their demagogue economic policies HURT the middle class. The wealthy are able to avoid their taxes and, on the most part, stay wealthy. But, how are is a woman with a middle class lifestyle able to accumulate wealth with all of the hurdles placed before her by the Democrats? She won't be able to get rich by working but she can be a lot better with her investments. Kerry and Edwards would hurt her chances.
# 26: "But we should not use the Constitution to divide this country. No state for the last 200 years has ever had to recognize another states marriage. This is using the Constitution as a political tool and its wrong."
TRUTH: Edwards should keep up with what his boss has to say. In 1996, Kerry spoke out against the Defense of Marriage Act (which Bill Clinton signed) saying that states had to recognize each other's marriage laws. He wrote in a column for the Advocate, "The authors of the bill mistakenly claim that Congress has the authority to allow one state to ignore a legally recognized marriage in another. But the U.S. Constitution is unequivocal on this point: 'Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State.' ...DOMA does violence to the spirit and letter of the Constitution by allowing the states to divide."
# 27: "We do have too many lawsuits and the reality is theres something that we can do about it. John Kerry and I have a plan to do something about it. We want to put more responsibility on the lawyers to require before a case of malpractice, which the vice president just spoke about; have the case reviewed by independent experts, who determine the case is serious and meritorious before it can be filed; hold the lawyers responsible for that to certify that and hold the lawyers financially responsible if they dont do it; have a three-strikes-and-youre-out rule so that a lawyer who files three of these cases without meeting this requirement loses their right to file these cases. That way we keep the cases out of the system that dont belong in the system."
TRUTH: Oh, that's rich. That's like Jacques Chirac saying we need to fix the corruption corroding the United Nations.
I had to print the whole quote to show this man's hubris. It takes a lot of guts to make over $40 million in your profession and then turn around and promise to change the rules completely. However, what's worse is that the rules Edwards proposes won't have any effect on frivolous lawsuits. His malpractice review board will be a bureaucratic nightmare. It won't be composed of independent experts but - you guessed it - more trial lawyers. The 3 strikes and you're out rule will apply to only the most egregious, and most stupid lawyer, in the business.
# 28: "What doctors talk about is very serious and theyre getting squeezed from both sides. Because they have trouble getting reimbursed first of all for the care that they provide, you know, from the government or from health care companies."
TRUTH: Kerry Voted To Block Medical Liability Reform At Least Ten Times. (H.R. 956, CQ Vote #137: Motion Rejected 39-61: R 10-44; D 29-17; I 0-0, 5/2/95, Kerry Voted Yea; H.R. 956, CQ Vote #140: Motion Agreed To 65-35: R 24-30; D 41-5, 5/2/95, Kerry Voted Yea; H.R. 956, CQ Vote #141: Motion Agreed To 56-44: R 13-41; D 43-3, 5/2/95, Kerry Voted Yea; H.R. 956, CQ Vote #144: Passed 53-47: R 48-6; D 5-41, 5/2/95, Kerry Voted Nay; H.R. 956, CQ Vote #151: Motion Rejected 46-53: R 44-10; D 2-43; I 0-0, 5/4/95, Kerry Voted Nay; H.R. 956, CQ Vote #152: Motion Rejected 47-52: R 45-9; D 2-43; I 0-0, 5/4/95, Kerry Voted Nay; H.R. 956, CQ Vote #160: Motion Agreed To 54-44:: R 46-7; D 8-37, 5/10/95, Kerry Voted Nay; H.R. 956, CQ Vote #161: Passed 61-37: R 46-7; D 15-30, 5/10/95, Kerry Voted Nay; S. 1052, CQ Vote #212: Motion Agreed To 52-46: R 2-45; D 49-1; I 1-0, 6/29/01, Kerry Voted Yea; S. 812, CQ Vote #197: Motion Agreed To 57-42: R 6-42; D 50-0; I 1-0, 7/30/02, Kerry Voted Yea)
# 29: "Well, first of all, I have paid all the taxes that I owe."
TRUTH: Yes, what he owed. But Edwards has criticized the type of corporate loopholes that he himself used in order to not pay the taxes. Here is what Cheney had to say, "While you were in private practice with law and as a senator you had a advantage of a special tax loophole, Subchapter S Corporation, which you set up so you could avoid paying $600,000 in Medicare taxes that would have gone into the fund. Its those kinds of loopholes that necessitate a premium increase under the law that was enacted in 1997 supported by John Kerry."
# 30: "I and I, first of all, I dont claim to have the long political résumé that Vice President Cheney has. Thats just the truth."
TRUTH: The truth, Hooray!
# 31: "Were screening passengers going onto airplanes, but we don't screen the cargo."
TRUTH: Progress is being made. Yesterday, the Senate passed even more sweeping bills to keep us safe. According to the Indianapolis Star, "In addition, the measure would beef up transportation security by authorizing $800 million to screen cargo and passenger baggage, hire air marshals and develop and install high-tech security measures at airports."
# 32: "Have you ever seen America more divided? Have you ever seen Washington more divided?"
TRUTH: Yes, we have seen it many times in our history. Senator Edwards perhaps forgot about a little fight called the Civil War. There was another war that divided the country, the Vietnam War. Perhaps Edwards should recall how his running mate, John Edwards, did an amazing job of dividing the country by accusing his fellow soldiers of being war criminals and then jetting off to meet with your communist enemies.
# 33: "Here's the truth. I have grown up in the bright light of America. But that light is flickering today. Now, I know that the vice president and the president don't see it. But you do."
TRUTH: No, we don't. We like the Ronald Reagan way of looking at things. We are optimists and we always believe that America's best days are ahead of us. Americans are firm believers that tomorrow will always be better than yesterday.
The city upon a hill is shining brighter than ever.
Full Transcript of the Debate Between the Vice Presidential Candidates in Cleveland