Thursday, March 18

If He Can't Be Kerry's VP, He Can Sure Become His Spokesman

Throwing the mud back in the face of Bush and Cheney, none other than Sen. John McCain has come to the defense of Sen. John Kerry over...defense. Funny how serving in a war makes you learn that when the heat's cranked up, you come to the aid of your fellow soldier.

McCain says Kerry not weak on defense nor is his election a threat to national security

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said Thursday he did not believe Democratic candidate John Kerry, a friend and Senate colleague, was weak on defense or would compromise national security if elected president.

"This kind of rhetoric, I think, is not helpful in educating and helping the American people make a choice," McCain said on "The Early Show" on CBS. "You know, it's the most bitter and partisan campaign that I've ever observed. I think it's because both parties are going to their bases rather than going to the middle. I regret it."

Republicans, including President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney, have sharply criticized Kerry on a range of defense and security issues, including not supporting the war in Iraq, voting against a measure to provide the war effort $87 billion, and voting against weapons systems critical to waging war. "The senator from Massachusetts has given us ample doubts about his judgment and the attitude he brings to bear on vital issues of national security," Cheney said in a speech Wednesday.

Asked on NBC's "Today" if he thought Kerry was weak on defense, McCain said: "No, I do not believe that he is, quote, weak on defense. He's responsible for his voting record, as we are all responsible for our records, and he'll have to explain it. But, no, I do not believe that he is necessarily weak on defense. I don't agree with him on some issues, clearly. But I decry this negativism that's going on on both sides. The American people don't need it."

When asked on "The Early Show" if Kerry's election would compromise national security, McCain responded: "I don't think that -- I think that John Kerry is a good and decent man. I think he has served his country."
Fair enough. I agree that Kerry has to rule the discussion - and not respond to the White House's Crap Factory. He has to keep them on the defensive and keep saying what we're all thinking. But it's nice to know that McCain has Kerry's back on this important issue, considering where the attacks are coming from.

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