Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Give 'Em Surrender Harry and the Dancing Dems

Here is Give 'Em Surrender Harry's speech the other day, going all out for defeat and retreat.

He is claiming now that, when he said the war was "lost," he was actually only repeating General Petraus.


Give 'Em Surrender Harry tried to justify his claim that the war is lost because Petraeus said that the solution to Iraq is not a military one. It is really painful to listen to, actually. And the CNN anchor questioning him let's him get away with it. Amazing. Do see the video here, - its the same one where Give 'Em Surrender Harry says he will refuse to believe General Petraeus in the briefing tommorow about any success the surge is having.

Carl Levin is taking the same position, that the good General cannot be expected to tell the truth:

Democrats were skeptical that [General Petraeus] would change many minds [during his briefing to the Senate]. “He’s the commander,” said Senator Carl Levin of Michigan, chairman of the Armed Services Committee. “We always know that commanders are optimistic about their policies.”

At least the Democrats are acknowledging that the surge is ongoing at this point. Up until about a few weeks ago, they ignored it as if it were not even occurring. Now they are of course doing their utmost to see that is not given any chance to succeed. They refused to get a March 18 briefing from Petraeus before the vote on war funding and to kill the surge. Nancy Pelosi wasn't even going to schedule a briefing this week for the House with General Petraeus. As it is, she is not going to attend it.

Lorie Bird asks when Lieberman is finally going to fire Harry Reid. That is something we would all like to know. (H/T Michelle Malkin)

Actually, it is no surprise whatsoever that Give 'Em Surrender Harry said what he did about Iraq being lost, as his mind was filled to overflowing with thoughts of a Democratic victory in '08, all made possible by milking defeatism. But as noted by Ryan Simburg:

I don't think that Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi objectively want Al Qaeda to win. I'm sure that they have succeeded in deluding themselves that we are the problem in Iraq. I'm also sure that they believe that this is in the near term a political winner for them, and sadly, they may be right. But they're playing a dangerous game. What if they're wrong, and the people actually reporting success in Iraq are right? They're so heavily invested in defeat now that it could actually be an electoral disaster for them next year. I certainly hope that will be the case. For me, it would be win-win--we'd have won in Iraq, and the Dems would have lost precisely because they did everything they could to prevent it from happening.

Protein Wisdom sees the situation likewise.

Then there is this utterly bizarre piece in the Politico where Give 'Em Surrender Harry's staff and fellow Dems try to back off, ever so slightly, from his outright embrace of defeat:

Several leading Democrats said this week that they did not agree with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's recent statement that "the war is lost" in Iraq, even while they support his broader message.

What in God's name does that mean? That we are not just defeated in Iraq but in some "broader" spectrum also?

But they did agree that Reid's wording was clumsy and potentially damaging. Even the Nevada Democrat himself appeared to be backing away from his remark.

Jim Manley, Reid's spokesman, said earlier that the "war is lost" comment was not in Reid's prepared text for the news conference last Thursday. But from now on, Manley said, the senator will "couch it more": The mission in Iraq is not working and must be changed.

Who let this idiot improv before the mikes? According to the playbook, he is only supposed to imply ultimate defeat, I guess.

Democrats have long tried to shed their image of being soft on national defense. Recent polls suggest they are making strides, showing that more voters trust congressional Democrats than they do the president to handle the situation in Iraq.

But statements such as Reid's -- while delighting those who have turned against the war -- provided Republicans an opportunity to shift focus from the merits of President Bush's Iraq war strategy to the level of support from Democrats for the troops.

"I understand what he was trying to say," said Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), although she acknowledged that Reid's comments had caused a political problem for Democrats. "I think it was more a problem of tone rather than of substance."

And they wonder why America thinks they are soft on national defense . . . tone rather then substance? In other words, all Democrats agree, they just have to couch it in ambiguous terms.

It has been almost a week since the majority leader uttered the unscripted remark, but it continues to serve as fodder for the debate over the war in Iraq, inciting sharp criticism from Republicans -- including a pointed jab Tuesday by Vice President Cheney -- and a tortuous defense by Democrats.

Cheney, who usually rushes by the media after his weekly lunch with Republican senators, walked to the microphone Tuesday and assailed Reid for his "unfortunate" and "uninformed" comments. After joking that it was his first post-luncheon statement in six years, the vice president accused the majority leader of putting politics above national security.

"It is cynical to declare the war is lost because it gives you political advantage," Cheney said before walking away without taking a single question.

The gauntlet is tossed down. And how does Give 'Em Surrender Harry respond to this charge that he is wholly driven by partisan political calculus?

Mr. Reid said he was not going to engage in a tit-for-tat with the vice president. “I’m not going to get into a name-calling match with somebody who has a 9 percent approval rating,” Mr. Reid said.
I hope the irony of that response is not lost on anyone. That is priceless. That quote of his response actually comes from an NYT article.

Reid's aides said Senate Democrats are supportive of the majority leader during this showdown with Bush over Iraq.

"The Caucus understands exactly where (Reid) is coming from," Manley said. "Politics is not exactly bean bags. And as he's said before, he'd rather dance than fight."

Wow. Mr. Manley appears desperately in need of a script before approaching reporters also. "Rather dance then fight?" That seems nonsensical, unless it is some incredibly obtuse reference to Give 'Em Surrender Harry's sudden embrace of the anti-war hard left. Who knows.

As his hometown newspaper said in this article on Give 'Em Surrender Harry a few days ago, "Enter Sen. Reid, flopping around in big red shoes like Bozo the Clown."

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