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The difference between D’s and R’s

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By Michelle Malkin  •  October 25, 2006 01:36 PM

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Don’t measure your drapes yet, lady

A few weeks ago, while blogging on the road (always a somewhat risky thing to do), I glibly mentioned the possibility of sitting at home for the midterms over heated disagreement with the Bush administration on immigration. Many grass-roots conservatives have grievances with how the White House has handled a number of issues, from Harriet Miers to spending to Iraq.

But we should not sit out the election. And grievances with the White House are no reason to give Nancy Pelosi the gavel. Congressional Republicans shouldn’t be blamed for Miers, the amnesty plan, etc.

My column today dovetails with the President’s comments at his press conference this morning about the fundamental difference between D’s and R’s. Video highlights here. Let me repeat what he said:

“I think the coming election a referendum on these two things: Which party has got the plan that will enable our economy to continue to grow? And which party has a plan to protect the American people? And Iraq is part of the security of the U.S. If and when we succeed in Iraq, our country will be more secure. If we don’t succeed, the country is less secure…I understand some people in Washington don’t think we are at war. They are just wrong, in my opinion. The enemy still wants to strike us. The enemy still wants to achieve safe have from which to plot and plan. The enemy would like to have WMD in order to attack us. These are lethal, cold-blooded killers. And we must do everything we can to protect the American people, including questioning detainees and listening to their phone calls from outside the country to inside the country…and as you know, there were some recent votes on that issue. And the Democrats voted against giving our professionals the tools necessary to protect the American people.

…I do not question their patriotism. I question whether or not they understand how dangerous this world is…

Here are my thoughts, tying together the midterms, the blabbermouth media, Byron Calame’s bombshell admission (still not getting any attention in the MSM), and the blabbermouth Dems. I’m reprinting my column in full here:

As one of those post-9/11 security moms, it all comes down to a simple question for me: Who will keep this country — and my children — safer from harm?

I have many heated differences with the Bush administration over its refusal to fully enforce immigration laws; soft-headed pandering to jihadist lobbying groups; profligate spending on illusory transportation security; failure to confront the spread of sharia law; and kowtowing to Saudi princes eager to send over more young students to learn aviation in our universities.

For all the White House’s faults, however, there is no doubt in my mind that Republicans as a group are better informed, better equipped and better able to lead this country in a time of war than the Democrats. The donkey party is led by thumb-sucking demagogues in prominent positions who equate Bush with Hitler and Jim Crow, call him a liar in front of high school students and the world, fantasize about impeachment and fetishize the human rights of terrorists who want to kill me.

Put simply: There are no grown-ups in the Democrat Party.

Maybe this is what a prematurely giddy Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., meant when she told the Los Angeles Times this week: “The gavel of the speaker of the House is in the hands of special interests, and now it will be in the hands of America’s children.”

Yep. Put the gavel in the hands of Pelosi and the Democrats, and you will put the gavel in the hands of children. Couldn’t put it better myself.

Another clarifying moment that underscores the fundamental difference between Republicans and Democrats on matters of national security, seriousness and secrecy took place on June 29, 2006.

That was the day the U.S. House of Representatives voted to condemn the decision by several newspapers — led by the newspaper of wreckage, The New York Times — to publish details of the Bush administration’s classified program to track terrorist financing. Known as SWIFT, the program had led to the capture of a key Bali bombing suspect and identification of a convicted al Qaeda helper based in New York City, as well as helping investigators probing domestic terrorist cells and suspected Islamic charities fronting for jihad. Under specious claims by anonymous accusers that the program’s legality and oversight were in doubt, the Times splashed details of the program all over its front pages. Democrats dutifully piled on to condemn the White House for its “illegal” “abuses of power.”

But House Republicans refused to roll over for the blabbermouth media and the blabbermouth Democrats. They put Washington on record with a vote on a nonbinding resolution stating the obvious — that news organizations may have “placed the lives of Americans in danger” by disclosing SWIFT and that Congress “expects the cooperation of all news media organizations” in keeping classified programs secret.

The resolution passed 227-183, with only 17 Democrats joining nearly all House Republicans in condemning the leak-dependent news media and supporting the surveillance program.

“This measure attempts to intimidate the press and strengthen the hands of this despotic administration,” railed New York Democrat Rep. Maurice Hinchey. “It is a campaign document,” pouted Rep. Pelosi in attacking the resolution. Republicans “have adopted a shoot-the-messenger strategy by attacking the newspaper that revealed the existence of the secret bank surveillance program rather than answering the disturbing questions that those reports raise about possible violations of the U.S. Constitution and U.S. privacy laws,” wheedled Rep. Edward J. Markey, D-Mass.

Why do I remind you of this vote and the Dems’ kindergarten reaction? Because the Times’ own ombudsman admitted this week that the story should never have run. Public editor Byron Calame ‘fessed up: “I don’t think the article should have been published. . . . I haven’t found any evidence in the intervening months that the surveillance program was illegal. . . . The lack of appropriate oversight — to catch any abuses in the absence of media attention — was a key reason I originally supported publication. I think, however, that I gave it too much weight.”

Not a single one of the Democrats who lambasted Bush and Republicans for protesting the reckless story has stepped forward to apologize to the president and the American people or acknowledge the harm caused to counterterrorism efforts.

Do you need to know any more to judge which party will keep this country safer? I don’t.

***

Rep. Pete Hoekstra has issued a statement on Calame’s belated mea culpa:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra, R-Mich., Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, issued the following statement after New York Times public editor Byron Calame declared his newspaper wrong for publishing a story on the illegally disclosed Terrorist Finance Tracking Program:

“The mea culpa of the New York Times public editor comes too late to stop the damage done to one of our nation’s leading tools to track, understand and prevent the money transfers that enable terrorist attacks. While the editor should be recognized for being the only one at the paper to recognize this was an irresponsible action, he should have been harsher on his fellow editors for ignoring pleadings of congressional leaders, the administration, including the Treasury Secretary, and the leaders of the 9/11 commission, which recommended America implement exactly this type of program, not to publish this story.

“Of course the mea culpa was buried deep in the paper and at the end of a piece about the newspaper’s magazines, so it’s not surprising few people noticed. But more Americans need to notice, and they should be outraged by this, and all, illegal disclosures of vital national security information. The New York Times will suffer no consequence from the illegal disclosure of this program, but the American people could pay the ultimate price because our nation’s ability to track and defend itself against terrorists has been harmed.

“In the war against radical Islam, intelligence is more vital than it has ever been before. The endless, politically motivated illegal leaks about our nation’s terrorism prevention programs must stop. Attempts to exploit these illegal disclosures for political gain also have to stop, and Republicans and Democrats should unite in universal condemnation of all illegal national security leaks.

“At the end of the day, no American has benefited from any of these illegal disclosures, only al-Qaeda, which can count on learning about America’s intelligence capabilities through a subscription to the New York Times.”


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Photoshop: PTG

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