Friday, October 08, 2004

Good Advice to President Bush: No More Mr Nice Guy

By Jane Chastain

The president of the United States is infected with a classic Republican disease: terminal niceness. While most of his colleagues in Congress are expected survive the next election, Mr. Bush has been given less than four weeks to live. Politically, he's on life support.

Much has been made about the Kerry flip-flops. David Bossie wrote an excellent book called, "The Many Faces of John Kerry." Last week's debate could have been called "The Many Faces of George W. Bush." On the cutaways, Bush was alternately bored and perturbed. When answering questions, he looked as if he were running for Miss Congeniality, not the leader of the free world.


A challenger always has an advantage in these debates. It's something called hindsight. Kerry exploited it to the max: "In the last four years, you could have ... you should have ... I would have ..."

Bush, acted as though he were running against a blank slate. He simply would not attack Kerry's 20-year record in the Senate. This is a republic, and much of the problems that we have as a nation today are a direct result of his oversight or his votes as a member of that illustrious body.

Yes, there was an intelligence failure, which no doubt contributed to the 9-11 attacks and led to some incorrect assessments as we invaded Iraq. Whose fault was that?

Before Bush came to Washington, Kerry served eight years on the Senate Intelligence Committee, and worked with Arizona Sen. Dennis DeConcini to gut the CIA. Kerry's record speaks for itself: He never once voted to increase intelligence spending and on three separate occasions voted to cut the intelligence budget.

In 1994, even DeConcini criticized his colleague from Massachusetts for trying to slash the intelligence budget by another $6 billion. Clearly, Kerry did not see the growing terrorist threat. If he did, his actions indicate he took no steps to prevent it from developing.

Kerry criticized Bush for the failures that remain to be addressed on airport security. But who has direct oversight over airport security? John Kerry does as a member of the Senate Transportation Committee.

On May 7, 2001, Brian Sullivan, a retired Federal Aviation Administration special agent from Kerry's state, wrote a letter to his senator warning that Boston Logan Airport was vulnerable to a "jihad" suicide operation which might be part of "a coordinated attack." He briefed Kerry on an undercover investigation he and another former agent ran for a Boston TV station. Then, he had the videotape of that investigation hand-delivered to Kerry's office by a current agent with the Transportation Security Administration.

It took Kerry's staff three months to respond. In short, Kerry couldn't be bothered. He offered to pass Sullivan's warning on to the TSA's inspector general, even though "Sully" had made it clear this was a dead end.

Mr. Bush, these are important matters that the American people need to know about. What better time to bring them out than in a high-profile debate? If these things were not in your briefing book, you should fire those responsible!

You simply cannot put these things in your commercials or leave them to the vice president, the spin-misters or address them in your speeches. With an election this tight – this close to the wire – the American people want to see how you do mano y mano.

Time to regroup and arm yourself for the next battle. Yes, battle!

Kerry went to Miami to destroy you. You were there to play nice. This may be good policy in kindergarten, but it is shortsighted, even silly, when you are fighting for your political life.

Liberal political pundits will do their best to convince you that the American electorate is turned off when a candidate goes negative. That's because liberals have so much negative to exploit.

John Kerry has had 20 years of bad ideas and bad votes in the U.S. Senate on domestic issues. If you ignore his record in the next debate, you don't deserve to win.

Four years ago, you were asked what historic figure you most admired. You answered, "Jesus Christ." Remember, Christ nor mince words when he chased the money changers out of the temple. He called them "a brood of vipers."

Your mother, Barbara, may have told you, "If you can't say something nice, don't say it at all." That doesn't apply here!

Nice guys don't always finish last, but nice guys who don't do their homework often do.


Jane Chastain is a WorldNetDaily columnist and radio talk-show host.


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