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"America has two great dominant strands of political thought - conservatism, which, at its very best, draws lines that should not be crossed; and progressivism, which, at its very best, breaks down barriers that should never have been erected." -- Bill Clinton, Dedication of the Clinton Presidential Library, November 2004

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Wednesday, November 12, 2003


RNC plan: Dems are soft on defense

posted by Aziz P. at Wednesday, November 12, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
yup, it's official. We saw this one coming. I have to point out that even so-called "friendly" GOP types such as John McCain are signing onto the party line in anticipation of 2004. Think McCain was on our side? think again:

Senator John McCain, the Arizona Republican and a former prisoner of war in Vietnam, predicted in a PBS interview that sustained, successful attacks by the Iraqi insurgency could "affect American public opinion" and influence next year's election.

Still, even McCain, who fought Bush for the Republican nomination and is often at odds with the White House, seemed to have gotten the RNC memo, or at least sounded in synch with the new Republican offensive during a policy speech at the Council on Foreign Relations on Nov. 5. Like strategists for Bush, McCain portrayed most of the Democratic candidates running for president as ambivalent and lily-livered on foreign policy, compared with the sitting president.

"With the exception of Joe Lieberman and Dick Gephardt, who are committed to victory in Iraq, it is unclear what the other Democratic presidential candidates would do differently to ensure an American victory -- or how they would handle the consequences of the early American withdrawal some advocate," McCain said. "Governor Dean has expressed ambiguity about the justness of our cause in Iraq. I hope he will learn that partisan anger is no substitute for moral clarity."

Across the board, Republicans are adopting the same approach.

"Democrats have very little to talk about, so they're left carping about Iraq, and none of them have a better answer than George Bush," former RNC chairman Rich Bond said. "Their answers are propelled by the loony left at this point."

translation: these two weak candidates are the ones the Dems should support, so Bush can stomp them. I fear Dean, so I shall misrepresent his position. Partisan anger, baby!

This article is important. It's a veritable preview of the themes and lines of attack that the GOP will bring to bear. As such the campaign must prepare now.


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About Nation-Building

Nation-Building was founded by Aziz Poonawalla in August 2002 under the name Dean Nation. Dean Nation was the very first weblog devoted to a presidential candidate, Howard Dean, and became the vanguard of the Dean netroot phenomenon, raising over $40,000 for the Dean campaign, pioneering the use of Meetup, and enjoying the attention of the campaign itself, with Joe Trippi a regular reader (and sometime commentor). Howard Dean himself even left a comment once. Dean Nation was a group weblog effort and counts among its alumni many of the progressive blogsphere's leading talent including Jerome Armstrong, Matthew Yglesias, and Ezra Klein. After the election in 2004, the blog refocused onto the theme of "purple politics", formally changing its name to Nation-Building in June 2006. The primary focus of the blog is on articulating purple-state policy at home and pragmatic liberal interventionism abroad.