Moron John Kerry--Updated and Bumped to Top
The Boston Globe pushes his chances
for a second run:Actually, Kerry is in better shape than that.
If there's no big appetite for a second Kerry campaign, it's also true that he has largely escaped the scathing recriminations that have faced other failed nominees.
As with most things Kerry, his 2004 campaign lends itself to several interpretations.
Although he likes to note that he was just half a football stadium away from winning in Ohio, which would have given him an Electoral College victory, it's also true that nationally, Kerry ran 3 million votes behind George W. Bush, a president whose polling numbers were so bad many Democrats felt he couldn't be reelected.
While Kerry defenders justifiably cite his crisp, focused, poll-moving debate performances as the campaign highlight, he had several conspicuous low points as well. Certainly "I actually did vote for the $87 billion before I voted against it" will live in self-immolating infamy. And after repeatedly warning Republicans not to challenge his patriotism, Kerry was remarkably flat-footed when the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth distorted his war record.
Sigh. I'm not going to fight that battle anymore. Let the media say what they will; the Swiftees exposed Kerry's war record, they did not distort it.
Update: mAc Chaos asked
(in the comments on this post):
Hey Pat, could you demonstrate how the Swiftees were correct and the charges that they're liars is wrong? I tend to believe them, but it's always assumed that they're automatically liars, and it's hard to disprove it unless you know what you're supposed to defend. I recall Snopes seeming to indicate that they were less than truthful as well, but I've withheld judgement.
The Snopes page on the Swiftees is here
. Oddly, it was last updated 7/30/04, about a week before the Swift Boat Vets started running ads, and before Unfit for Command, the book by Swiftee John O'Neill, detailed specific charges against Kerry. It's mostly fair, although it does include this quote from David Alston:"I can still see him now, standing in the doorway of the pilothouse, firing his M-16, shouting orders through the smoke and chaos . . . Even wounded, or confronting sights no man should ever have to see, he never lost his cool.
I had to sit on my hands [after a firefight], I was shaking so hard . . . He went to every man on that boat and put his arm around them and asked them how they're doing. I've never had an officer do that before or since. That's the mettle of the man, John Kerry."3
— David Alston
We helped debunk the
"I can still see him now, standing in the doorway of the pilothouse, firing his M-16" part of this post. Listen to this description of a January 29, 1969 incident from Tour of Duty, Douglas Brinkley's hagiography of Kerry:... suddenly there was a booming explosion that literally lifted PCF-94 right out of the water. Peck was standing in the pilothouse doorway with an M-16 at the ready to start strafing the jungle. Just as he pulled the trigger he was hit by two machine-gun bullets, one in his arm and one in his chest... [a]lthough bleeding profusely, Peck managed to continue firing back...
Sounds like the incident Alston was describing, but Kerry was not there
Some specific incidents where Kerry was proven wrong and the Swiftees proven right:Christmas in CambodiaWhere was Rassman
And two of Kerry's Swift Boat Pals who appeared on stage with him at the DNC were exposed as exaggerating their claims
of being with Kerry during the incidents which resulted in his Bronze and Silver Stars.
Even putting the best face on it for Kerry, about all you can say is that some of the Swiftees' claims about Kerry were unable to be proven. It is true that some of the men who opposed him were previously supportive (most notably Admiral Roy Hoffman who started the SBVfT and who campaigned for Kerry during his 1996 reelection effort). But Hoffman was slammed in Tour of Duty, which explains at least partly why he changed his position. It can certainly be argued as well that after the exhaustive review of Kerry's record done by the Swiftee researchers (most notably by our longtime buddy Tom "River Rat" Mortensen and The Bandit), that he changed his mind on Kerry's performance.
This is silly:Kerry, like Nixon, would hardly start as the favorite for his party's nomination. That would obviously be Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton.
And yet, Clinton's polling numbers probably reflect as much nostalgia for her husband's presidency as they do genuine support for the New York senator herself, who hasn't displayed his political skill or nimbleness.
Moreover, several recent polls -- one showing her being beaten handily by Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona; another revealing that a (slim) majority of registered voters polled said they would never vote for her - have Democratic insiders edgy.
What state could Hillary Clinton win that he didn't, Kerry has pointedly asked some associates?
Turn it around. What state could Kerry win that Hillary couldn't? It's a crappy argument anyway, because it can be turned around on Kerry by Mark Warner, who can say that he could take Virginia, which Kerry couldn't.
Look over at Tradesports
, which has Kerry at between 2 and 3 cents (payoff $1.00 if he's the nominee. Hillary's at 40 cents, Mark Warner's at 20. Even the Breck Girl's at over 5 cents.
And this is ridiculous:Despite the disdain some Washington types have for him, Kerry remains reasonably well thought of by grass-roots Democrats, which is important in a crowded field. In 2004, his status as a second choice for many primary voters gave him room to grow when others faltered.
Oh, yeah? Over at MyDD, a major Lefty blog, they have monthly straw polls
for the Democratic nomination. As you can see, the grass roots activists aren't too thrilled with Nuancy Boy. He gets about 1/18th of the vote that Russ Feingold gets. Now, Hillary also gets crushed in this poll, but nobody's claiming she's got the support of the "grass-roots".