Wednesday, October 25, 2006
GOP ad strikes new tone on Iraq

The campaign ad linked above is from Mark Kennedy, a Republican congressman from Minnesota who is running for the U.S. Senate.

We find it interesting because Kennedy says, essentially: We've made mistakes in Iraq and I know a lot of you are unhappy about where we are today in Iraq, but you should support me anyway, because the consequences of leaving Iraq now could be dire.

His candor is striking. And it seems to be a bellweather for what is happening in many races in these last days leading up to the election.

It made us think of James Carville's battle cry featured in the "The War Room," the documentary that took viewers inside Clinton's 1992 campaign for the presidency. Remember, "It's the economy, stupid." It seems to me that in this mid-term election the key to many political futures comes down to Iraq. In other words, "It's the war, stupid."

And that's why we are using Kennedy's commercial as a framework to explore politics and Iraq on tonight's program. We've streamed Rep. Kennedy's ad online, so please take a look and let us know what you think. We'll be listening.
Posted By David Doss, "360" Executive Producer: 2:34 PM ET
That candor is sorely lacking on both sides -- the Republicans who can't seem to get an Iraq message going or get points for the strong economy, and the Democrats who don't have anything to say other than bash Bush and point out how bad everything is (whether it is or not). As a voter, I'm offended that the candidates insult my intelligence by pandering to the lowest common denominator on either side.

Having said that, I see the Democrats getting away with a lot more than the Republicans are regarding half-truths and tasteless comments (anyone making a big deal about the racist remarks made against Steele?). Given there isn't a Democratic agenda besides "we're not Republicans" or "we hate Bush, too", and the Republicans generally seem impotent, maybe an unexpected dose of honesty will swing the pendulum.

Besides, looking at all the "Bush lied!" and "impeach Bush!" and other hyperbolic shrieking going on from the left, I think whatever middle-ground voters are out there are a little scared of the gridlock and witch hunts that would probably happen if the Democrats win.
Posted By Anonymous David, Tulsa OK : 4:21 PM ET
Does anyone remember what started WWII? Hitler wanted a "master race", and killed 6 million people trying to achieve it. For a long time the rest of the world just looked on, with Nevill Chamberlin giving away Chekoslovakia to gain 'peace in our time'. Radical Islam wants everyone in the world to convert or die. Congressman Kennedy is right, mistakes have been made, but the bigger mistake would be to withdraw and "look on" until they come knocking on our door and fighting us in our own backyard.
Posted By Anonymous Maggie, Concord, MI : 4:28 PM ET
Hi David,
I watched the ad and find nothing wrong with it..Of course, I'm sure the negative comments will be many..And that brings me to my point, yes, I have one..I think we all need to tone down the anger. No one can think clearly with so much venom coming from Americans directed at each other..Debate is great, freedom of speech is too. But a debate left the table along time ago..We seem to have adopted the, "it's my way or the highway" attitude. And it's my opinion only, that that applies to BOTH parties..No one died and left us all in charge..I'd just like to see a little civility come back between us..My neighbor who thinks different than me is still my neighbor and a friend..I hope that never changes for any of us..Take Care..The world may be in a mess but it isn't hopeless..
Posted By Anonymous Lorie Ann, Buellton, Calif. : 4:30 PM ET
A point Mr. Kennedy and others seem to miss is that we wouldn't even be *in* Iraq if it weren't for people with his mindset in control of government. He seems to forget that people like me and my wife have children in the service, in Iraq, and don't like it one bit. Al Qaida and the other terrorists there are there precisely because of George Bush and the Republican's missteps and incompetence. And he expects us to trust him? Forget that! I want a Democratic Congress in place to stop this runaway train in it's tracks. I want us OUT of Iraq immediately. The ONLY people who want us there are a few Iraqi "leaders" already up to their eyeballs in bribes and kickback, who depend upon us for their power and this weasle for a president we've got.
Posted By Anonymous Mike Brooks Eugene, OR : 4:44 PM ET
Iraq is a waste of American resources and human life. Al-Quaeda!! Al-Quada!! In Iraq!! They are now, because we went there and started killing and trying to sell democracy by gun point.

There are simply some cultures out there that are the way they are and have no intention of changing. I'm also sure there is a minority in each one that welcomes change, but to grab that minority and forcefully raise it to the top destroys the very democratic concept you try to instill in that culture.

Sure, Saddam was a nasty guy, but at the time, he was not a threat. Sure he did nasty things to his own people, but his people allowed it. It is up to the people to change a government, and they seemed rather content with how things were going.

Get us the hell out. The only thing we are defending over there is our pride.
Posted By Anonymous Dennis, St. Petersburg, FL : 4:54 PM ET
There is a difference between "candor" and calculated spin. The current GOP by-line reminds me of the abusive husband who, only after his wife finally threatens to kick him out of the house and begin divorce proceedings, begins to "show" remorse, admit his misgivings, and promise to change (just a little). It is only when these tactics don't work and he gets the feeling that his wife isn't going to buy it - this time around - that he throws in a little, curve-ball threat, "if you go through with the divorce, you're going to lose the house, the vacations, and the luxury SUV!" It's only after she throws the bum out that the wife begins to realize that she didn't lose the house, her vacations are a lot happier, and she kind of likes driving her new hybrid! Kick the bums out and get our men and women back home to their families!
Posted By Anonymous Billy Mange, Redlands, California : 4:55 PM ET
this sounds a lot like 2 wrongs equal right. Wrong war, wrong to keep killing, but together, they are right. Something is still wrong here.
Posted By Anonymous Mike Sale, Knoxville, TN : 6:04 PM ET
Taking this add by itself, Mr. Kennedy makes himself look moderate and thoughtful. However, as a resident of Minnesota I have been subjected to the entire body of Mr. Kennedy's adds, and found this one just another attempt by him to distance himself from President Bush, but remain true to the republican line. I personally am unconvinced by his arguement of "hey, you guys are upset, we messed stuff up, but this time we will make it better so vote for me anyway." I do applaud Mr. Kennedy for recognizing the reality of the situation in Iraq, unlike some Republican candidates, but if you think about it, should a person be applauded for saying that the truth is true?
Posted By Anonymous Jake, Minneapolis, Mn. : 6:11 PM ET
Mr. Kennedy accuses his opponent of favoring diplomacy, and then dismisses it by claiming "you cannot negotiate with someone who wants to kill you." That kind of atitude has led to our "stay the course" and fight method, and it is failing. We need to talk to the insurgents, understand the situation, and find ways to deal with the problem. We are trying to create a democracy in Iraq (whether you agree with the war or not), and democracy is based in talking, understanding viewpoints, and compromising for solutions. We have yet to bring them to the table. What kind of example are we setting?
Posted By Anonymous Russell, Cambridge, MA : 6:19 PM ET
Simple ad, great ad that basically says:

"Wishing that terrorism ends is not a plan."
Posted By Anonymous xtina - chicago IL : 6:37 PM ET
I just dont undstand the party line that the ad ends with. We sould have been told the truth on the war a year ago. We have eyes and ears. Now we get the softball from RIGHT FIELD.

Posted By Anonymous Darren P. Babby, Hughson, CA : 7:03 PM ET
In the private sector, if a CEO or other high level executive were to make the kind of mistakes we've seen with this Congress, he/she would be EXPECTED to offer his/her resignation and step down. The level of false humility shown here by Mr. Kennedy is appalling.
It's time for true leadership in Washington, leadership that involves the same ethics and consequences that the rest of us play by.
The words "I'm sorry," need to have appropriate actions along with the words; actions not being shown here by Mr. Kennedy. If he were truly sorry for the mistakes he helped make, he'd step down, and only then ask for forgiveness.
Posted By Anonymous Jill- Tacoma, Wa : 7:04 PM ET
Mr. Doss:

Yesterday I saw President Bush live in Sarasota, FL. I must say Mr. Kennedy's ads are "on script" with the President's message. President Bush feels the consequences of leaving Iraq now could be dire.

Although I remain unhappy about the war, I must trust the President and his advisors know more than I do. Having seen the President live, I must say that I have never been more proud to be an American.
Posted By Anonymous Renee Bradenton, FL : 7:05 PM ET
If Mark Kennedy had more time he could possibly have added:

We in the U.S. are very good at complacency and denial.

We want to live in a free country, but don�t want to pay anything for it. We say �I want to live in the very best country in the history of the world, but don�t ask me to make any sacrifices for that privelege."

Just say that to a soldier of the Greatest Generation.

Staying silent doing nothing is consent.
Posted By Anonymous DH - Lake Barrington , Ill. : 7:12 PM ET
This whole argument of "fight them over there or we will be fighting them over here" is so idiotic. We would not be in this mess if our President and Congress went after the country of Saudi Arabia, where all the terrorists involved in 911 were from. Maybe 911 could have been thwarted if our President wasn't on vacation amd couldn't be reached on 8/6/01 for the the classified briefing that included the attacks planned by Al Qaeda. I cannot fathom why not more Americans are outraged that this administration played off our grief to wage their own personal battle with Iraq and more importantly Saddam. Don't mistake me for only coming down on Republicans because many Democrats also jumped the gun and believed what was told to them at face value, instead of doing research. We are spending billions of dollars on a country that will never convert to a Western society while our country is literally starting to come apart at the seams. The terrorist groups will forever be in Iraq. This is a pointless, victory-less war and our young men and women in the military are paying the ultimate price with their lives and the lives of their loved ones. Both parties are sickening. Vote Independant. Sent the Washington croonies & lobbyists a message.
Posted By Anonymous Katherine, Woodland Hills CA : 7:19 PM ET
Today I met my nephew for the first time via his ultrasound picture. It put the world in perspective. Neither party in ads I've seen can even begin to promise me that what they are doing ensures that this baby boy will in twenty years have the same quality of life our family has been so fortunate to enjoy. Finishing the job in Iraq may or may not guarantee that future. What they do domestically can. It's odd how politics as usual in ads such as this one sideskirt the real issues. Maybe they really all don't have a clue. I work for the local government where we see the real America every day. I promise the people I help have greater problems than Iraq that their representatives need to address (healthcare, job security, education, housing, public and personal safety, and adequately providing for families). It would be so refreshing to see that happen. But I won't hold my breath.
Posted By Anonymous TA Cheramie, Berwick, LA : 7:24 PM ET
Some mistakes? He makes it sounds like as if the mistakes were miniscule and can be easily overlooked. He says you can't negotiate with people who want to kill you. So I guess Iran and N. Korea don't fit in that category then right? He makes the dynamics of this war sound so simple, and with that, only make him look like he truly does not know what he's talking about.
Posted By Anonymous David Steele. Las Vegas, NV : 7:29 PM ET
I live here and I have seen Kennedy's ad more than enough. And his phony balony "candor" makes me want to vomit. Don't fall for this ploy.
Posted By Anonymous Rob, Eden Prairie, MN : 7:49 PM ET
Dear David,

I wouldn't characterize Mark Kennedy's commercial as being candid. When ads like this begin to appear you know these candidates realize they, and, or their party is in trouble. These ads are nothing more than feeble attempts to convince gullible, uninformed voters that they recognize the error of their ways and are now worthy of their precious vote. After the election they will return to being arrogant, self-serving politicians.

I do not believe anything politicians say or do in an election year. The voters need to start educating themselves and select candidates based on their body of work, not on a last ditch effort to secure votes.
Posted By Anonymous Jo Ann Matese, North Royalton, Ohio : 7:58 PM ET
Mr. Kennedy is absolutely right. We must continue to fight and disrupt the terrorist organizations. We can not afford the terrorist to rebuild and take over control without any resistance. With Iran wanting nuclear weapons, Hezbolah (remeber them) wanting the same thing and don't forget the palistinians and the leader who want take destroy Isreal, we cannot afford to pull out and do nothing. The same people who cry for us to pull out will be the first ones saying we should have done something when a big terrorst attack hits.

Don't listen to the hippocrate liberals.

The US is doing the right thing. God Bless our troops.
Posted By Anonymous Brian Bolingbrook IL : 8:04 PM ET
I think that the war in Iraq is an important issue because there are many of our people over there dying. I am not quite sure if the answer to the question is to continue fighting. It seems to me either way you go the consequences are dire. If you continue to fight, more Americans die, and civil war between the Shiites and the Sunnis become more a reality. If you pull out, the Iraqis are left to pick up the pieces; which will possibly speed up the chances that there will be civil war between the Shiites and the Sunnis.

What I do know is that in our own country there are several problems that need to be addressed. For example, crime, the economy, education, gas and energy sources, and the widening gap between the rich and poor. Republicans do not have the solutions to the problems. This is clear from inaction in government, the constant squabbling among Democrats, Republicans, and Independents, and seemingly inattention to the real issues that affect real people.

So Republicans politicize the war in Iraq. Plain talk right to your face rhetoric about the harsh realities of the Iraq war, I assume, are supposed to jolt the average Joe out of the Lazy Boy chair and run and vote Republican. Forget the fact that average Joe is having a hard time paying the bills, forget that the average Joe has a family member or friend somewhere fighting in Iraq --fighting for his or her life, or forget that the average Joe may have medical expenses that are sky high. Just think about the war, and vote Republican.

Real Americans are starting to see through the Republican's "jive turkey." I believe that Americans want people in office who are willing to work toward solutions to make life better. Not only for our soldiers in Iraq, but for all the problems we face at home. Americans don't want another political smoke screen, they want truth. This whole "in your face attitude" that Kennedy is displaying will fizzle out into a thud.

Sylvie Grace
Posted By Anonymous Sylvie Grace Atlanta, Georgia : 8:06 PM ET
Regardless of the position of the candidate on Iraq, voters must vote to change the dangerous course Republicans have put us on.

We need a Democratic Congress to counter balance a President with a radical agenda and his Republican Congress which has failed in it's duty as overseer of the Executive branch of government.

The time has come for informed voters to restore the check and balance system of our government and change the dangerous direction our country has been on for far too long.
Posted By Anonymous Joseph Kowalski, North Huntingdon, PA : 8:11 PM ET
"I know a lot of you are unhappy about Iraq...but you should support me anyway..." I find it insulting that he thinks he can get votes by saying this. Sounds like they're running out of ideas...
Posted By Anonymous Lilibeth, Edmonds, WA : 8:20 PM ET
Thank you for bringing this ad to the attention of the viewers.

It's a "reinforcing" message - one which people need to hear. And it reminds Americans that they shouldn't assume that Republicans want to be in a continuous state of war, but that we have a mission to fulfill that began on 9-11-01 and may go on for years.
Posted By Anonymous Steve - Peoria, Ill. : 8:27 PM ET
An old truism in politics. If you want to neutralize an opponents message then you agree with him. This comes close to that. What we really need is politicians who will accept responsibitly for what went wrong. If he had said we were wrong to go there in the first place I would have more faith. As Kevin Tillman wrote this week the more people who die in this war the more justifiable it gets. This kind of ad just doesn't ring true. It rings of tactics not honest policy.
Posted By Anonymous Mike Kloeck, San Jose, CA : 8:37 PM ET
I think we need to put all the lying Republicans on planes, give them the equipment our soldiers now have, put the soldiers on the planes we use to drop off the Republicans, and bring the soldiers home. Let the dummy Republicans die in vain, for a war based on Republican lies.(Bush's lies to be more exact)
Posted By Anonymous Dan Vandermeir, Seffner Florida : 9:02 PM ET
This ad reminders me of the scene we all know of a parent telling a child that even though the medicine tastes bad or the shot hurts this is "for your own good." I really don't see this ad as deviating from the President's message at all. Mr. Kennedy isn't saying specifically the words "stay the course" as the President repeats constantly but he is also not suggesting any changes or new ideas either. Other than advocating an open discussion about the war, Mr. Kennedy doesn't seem it have any ideas at all on this subject. At least I didn't see any on his website. I agree that the main issue in this election is the war. It has overshadowed everything in this country for more than three years including much to my disbelief Hurricane Katrina. It seems to have finally come to head with polls shifting against the Republicans in this election. The war in Iraq may very well be developing into a civil war, some say in fact that it's already there. It may be a breeding ground for terrorists as Afghanistan was before 9/11. However, the greater consequences of the war in Iraq are faced daily by the Iraqi people who are dragged from their homes by the hundreds and then tortured and killed as part of the sectarian violence. The issues involved in Iraq are very different from what they were two or three years ago. I am not sure that Mr. Kennedy is really acknowledging that change in this ad. He may just be ducking the criticism the President received in the 2004 election when Mr. Bush kept refusing to acknowledge any mistakes with his Iraq policy.
Posted By Anonymous Stephanie, Washington, D.C. : 11:19 PM ET
Interesting ad in support of a war, the reasons for which keep changing to try to adapt to the changing mood of the American voter. This ad says to me, "let's not think about why we're in Iraq...let's just talk about why we have to stay." This is the debate that Republicans want. They don't want to talk about WHY Iraq is a mess. They only want to use scare tactics ---even toned down "gentle nudging" to talk about why we can't leave. Even this attempt at "candor" will not gain any credibility with the average American voter. With only 2 weeks left before the toilet flushes on a Congress that has taken corruption to new heights, done nothing productive except to allow the extreme religious right to prioritize its agenda with bigoted, divisive legislation, some are beginning to realize that it wasn't good policy to shine-on voters with lies about weapons of mass destruction and links between Iraq and 9/11 that NEVER existed. This ad touches upon the unspoken, rarely admitted reason for the Iraq war: Neoconservative visions to reshape the Middle East to make it more "oil friendly" for Americans and to promote American profits and control over its vast amounts of oil reserves. I guess it's always been the case of "it's the oil, stupid". But that slogan doesn't get average 20 year old Americans fired up to invade a country, start a preemptive war on a people who didn't attack us, and in the process, kill thousands, maim and make homeless thousands more, and create an absolute mess from which we cannot seem to escape-----all for the corporate control of black gold. Americans, especially those who consider themselves to be the moral standard bearers for the rest of us, should be outraged. Iraq is a moral disgrace. And no amount of spin-doctoring two weeks before mid-term elections can change that now. It's a clever ad that tries to side-step the issues---but too little, and way too late.
Posted By Anonymous Mrs. Ann Drysdale, Dublin, California : 11:35 PM ET
I wish more candidates were as genuine and forthright in their campaign ads. I am weary of listening to candidates'attacks on opponents. Tell me where YOU stand on the issues. How are you going to vote? I wish those running for elected office would work diligently to promote their skills, their platform, and detail the reasons we should give them our vote rather than viciously attacking another individual. These type of tactics not professional; they lack integrity. I expect candidates to conduct themselves with integrity and find more and more candidates lacking.
Posted By Anonymous Kimberly, Woodbridge, VA : 11:37 PM ET
I do not think this add wiil work. I dont believe Americans are that stupid. They have listened to,too many lies for just too long. The American public have been more than patient and have given the republicans more credit than the republicans have given to constituents.
Posted By Anonymous Agnes Pretty, Tottenham, Ontario : 12:08 AM ET
"Some mistakes" were made? Somewhere between 50,000 and 100,000 human beings have been killed, solely because George Bush decided to invade Iraq. What kind of "candor" makes up for that butchery? What kind of punishment should be handed out to the man who made that mistake? And why, why in the world, should we continue to trust him?
Posted By Anonymous Sam Behrends, Maryland : 12:16 AM ET
This politician wants it both ways. To say mistakes were made but lets stay until the "job" is done anyway. Why are we wasting all our best men and money to keep sunnis and shittes from killing each other while, at the same time, dodging fire from al quada. It's like we decided to go waste as much men and money as we could so we chose Iraq. Sadam Hussein used to spend his money and 100,000's of his men doing this and fighting Iran but now we decided we wanted to take over that job for a while. Cheney and Bush misled the U.S. people and are very arrogant about it still. Iraqui Sunnis will hate us for a long time to come and Iran and Korea brag about WMDs in our face and we do nothing about them. Cheney and karl Rove outed our own CIA agent valerie plane to avoid the truth being exposed. Unpatriotic self serving "leaders".
Posted By Anonymous tom - montgomery alabama : 1:23 AM ET
I am a Republican and I am embarrassed and apalled by these ads. At this point, I don't believe a thing this administration says about the war in Iraq or anything else, for that matter. For the first time in decades, I am voting against my party line.
Posted By Anonymous Rob Roland, Houston TX : 1:27 AM ET
Another tacky campaign video. Seems like the canidates for this election period are either making them or slamming the videos of others.

Even people who are not running for office feel compelled to "put their two cents" in!

Perfect example is the rude comment from Rush Limbaugh in response to a campaign video where actor Michael J. Fox talks about stem cell research. In the ad you can see that Fox's condition has deteriorated.

Part of Limbaugh's response to Fox was "..he was either off the medication or he was acting. He is an actor, after all.

What a mess...
Posted By Anonymous Genevieve Matthews, El Paso, TX : 2:01 AM ET
Did we learn nothing from Viet Nam? Mistakes simply aren't the issue. Iraq has devolved into a civil war and we can't cure it no matter how long we "stay the course". Without consideration of the "wag the dog" policy that got us there, which SHOULD be grounds for impeachment, we will only lose more ground and more lives each day we stay. Those who argue that we can't leave because it will get worse and then we'll have to fight them over here are guilty of grevious misconceptions. Though tempted to ask the rhetorical question of how many Vietnamese invaded the U.S. after we pulled out of Viet Nam, this policy argument ignores the fact that things will worsen in Iraq with or without us and we have neither the duty nor the right to continue to try and impose our will through military force on another soverign nation-particularly one which did not wage war against us. I love this country and count myself a patriot, but I'm tired of watching old men kill our children, and Iraq's, to satisfy some psychotic lust, or worse, test of their "Republican" bona fides.
Posted By Anonymous Jim Carlson, Dallas, Texas : 5:22 AM ET
Kennedy's ad continues the refusal by both parties to admit the reason the United States really invaded Iraq in March 2003. The motive behind the attack is the same as the British invasion and occupation of Iraq after World War I. That motive was and still is Oil. Any American with a modium of common sense and an inquiring mind could find that out by going to the Libary of Congress Country Studies on Iraq and read the section on World War I and the British Mandate.
Posted By Anonymous Robert Pike, Canyon Country, California : 6:57 AM ET
To me, this election campaign, which if it goes well is a preview of two years from now, is yet another monsterous point of deception! I, with everyone else, am gravely concerned about the horrific waste of precious human resources in Iraq! We are asked to trust an administration that has cost our Country world wide trust and respect for the sake of personal vendetta! All the while, have we forgot about the real enemy????!!! Osama Bin Ladin!!!!! As many Americans have perished in Iraq as in the World Trade Center attacks and, again, because of personal vendetta!!!! 144,000 American troops now in Iraq trying to sell democracy in a land that never had it or even asked for it! 20,000 American troops in Afganistan seeking to find the worlds most frightening terrorist. Do the math, America!!! I, as an American, would feel a lot safer knowing that Osama was dead than watching our kids getting killed in Iraq trying to sidestep a local civil war!! Mr. Kennedy, you are just another lying politition trying to abuse the ignorant that live here for your personal gain!
Posted By Anonymous Steve, Bluffton, SC : 7:51 AM ET
Regardless of someone's ad; the real game day will be when the newly elected officals step in the ring and start to deal with the fireballs already in motion. It will take a high amount of calm, steedy to quiet the rage, and re-establish our political and economical backlash that is in motion now. Then, now, next... ads with some real words about what they are going to do... is what I would like to hear. What about companies the export their firms and home base out of the US outsourcing jobs and then wondering why their numbers fall, like the economy. We aren't building America any more we are micromanaging it to make more with less. Which in the end means we have less... I don't have my Masters and still know this!

If I don't vote, and I'm a republican it's the same a giving in but look at the pot we have to pick. I am still listening for some substance-for a real strategy. Independent is starting to look like a realistic option... and my husband is in Iraq.
Posted By Anonymous hb, Pensacola Fl. : 9:02 AM ET
While I appreciate Mark Kennedy being remorseful about the war, it does not erase his legislative record. I have not forgotten that the legislation he sponsored in the "Do-Nothing" 109th Congress was to expand the powers of the Executive Branch, and he has refused to co-sponsor legislation to benefit military, veterans, families and survivors. When a delegation of Minnesota disabled veterans visited Congressman Kennedy's Washington office this year, he kept them out in the hallway, even though they had an appointment, and told them, "Give your issues to my aide."

Kennedy's legislative rating from the Disabled American Veterans is a "20" for 2005, and the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) just rated him a "C+."

I'll be voting for diplomacy, and I'll be voting Democratic.
Posted By Anonymous Nancy, Minneapolis, MN : 9:41 AM ET
My brother spent a year in Iraq, and may be going back. I've known several people who have been wounded or killed in Iraq, and for Kennedy to say that we have to sit on our hands and watch more of our nation's best killed for a mistake is... I was an English major, but I just don't have words that match exactly how I feel. Disgust at him? Satisfaction at having voted absentee? Rage? Anger? Sadness? Hope for change?
Posted By Anonymous Sean-Patrick Burke, Winooski, Vermont : 12:57 PM ET
If Rep. Kennedy were to say "We made a mistake by going into Iraq. But since we started this fiasco, we will own up to it and stay there until we fix it", then he would be telling the truth.

Rep. Kennedy's statements boil down to the same rhetoric: "Stay the course".

And yes, one more thing: To all those people who support Republicans, just because Democrats don't have a better solution; PLEASE WAKE UP AND THINK. There is no easy solution to this mess !!!!!

Choose Republicans and you are guaranteed to be at war for the next God knows how many years.

Choose Democrats and there is a chance that they will sort this out; it will be very slow, but nevertheless WE WILL STOP MOVING IN THE WRONG DIRECTION AND START MOVING IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION!!!!
Posted By Anonymous AJ, Hartford CT : 1:49 PM ET
These comments are quite enlightening. I wouldn't trust anything any Republican has to say now. If the Democrats don't take one branch of Congress, then it will be back to the same ol same ol. And be ready for "the people have spoken...they want us to keep doing what we were doing." We can't let that happen. Checks and balances need to be restored. Faith in our government needs to be restored. Trust that what we are being told needs to be restored. Truth and honesty needs to be restored. Not saying the Democrats are the total answer. But they are a start in stopping some of the insanity now going on in Washington. With Democrats in one branch (2 would be even better) at least it gives Bush some problems and maybe he'll think about the American people and what we want before he begins ripping away even more at our Constitution and freedoms. This 2006 Midterm Election will tell the President to stop what he's been doing or to keep doing it. Heaven forbid if he's allowed to continue on the course of the past 6 years.
Posted By Anonymous Bev, Fayetteville, AR : 1:56 PM ET
It's Republican rhetoric, stupid.
Posted By Anonymous Moe, Liverpool NY : 3:25 PM ET
"When a delegation of Minnesota disabled veterans visited Congressman Kennedy's Washington office this year, he kept them out in the hallway, even though they had an appointment, and told them, "Give your issues to my aide."

Kennedy's legislative rating from the Disabled American Veterans is a "20" for 2005, and the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) just rated him a "C+."

The above quote from Nancy should be all the rest of you need to know regarding Representative Kennedy's record on "supporting our troops".

Elsewhere in the country, folks see this ad here, and think "right on - there's a Republican who's coming forward - he's a good guy". Then, here in Minnesota, we remember incidents as I requoted from Nancy above and we know how he feels about our troops - not based on last minute advertising, but on his actions.

Don't buy in to the lines. Anyone can tell you anything. Research the record and hold these public servants accountable for their actions (or inactions) while on the public payroll.
Posted By Anonymous Kenn, Minneapolis MN : 2:53 PM ET
I am not loyal to any political party. I am curious to know more about what these politicians have learned from their "mistakes". We knew there were mistakes being made when there was no evidence found of WMDs, yet our policy stayed the same (stay the course, today republicans are legitimate hipporcrites). A policy of inflexibility and insensitivity does much to discredit our government. When will it become evident that these leaders have actually learned something from making all of these deadly mistakes? Why are Americans paranoid that our country will be invaded and degraded by terrorists? What has the government done to protect us at home? Nothing. I live right next to NYC and about five miles away from one of the locations targeted in terrorist plans. Nothing has changed for us in New Jersey except for the ugly political rhetoric and the mounting evidence that this war is furthering the cause of terrorism for extremists who truly believe that the American way is violence. We are all losers.
Posted By Anonymous Ken, West Orange, NJ : 4:05 PM ET
The message in the ad brings many points of truth. We are in Iraq and Afganastan for a reason. (9-11-01) I just wish the people in the US would remember that. We were attacked first, with no provacation. Maybe if we and the other countries involved in the Gulf War were allowed to finish the war then, maybe we would not be there now. As and American I personally have a vested interest intrest with what is happening in Iraq and Afg. I have my husband and son serving over there right now, and my youngest son getting ready to join the Air Force. My husband has been to Iraq three times and Afg. twice. We as a country should support our mil. Then maybe some good things would start coming out of this war, and yes it is still a war.

God bless our Troops and keep them safe!!
Posted By Anonymous Marilyn Milne Fayetteville, NC : 7:40 PM ET
Let me see....Do the guys who have made the greatest political goofs in the history of the world really think they are entitled to more on the job training? I think not. Let's try some new guys.
Posted By Anonymous Buddy Atwood, Magnolia, TX : 8:49 AM ET
A behind the scenes look at "Anderson Cooper 360°" and the stories it covers, written by Anderson Cooper and the show's correspondents and producers.

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