“‘In challenging times we need leadership that knows how to make America safer, that knows how to put America back to work,’ Kerry told the crowd. ‘The president has misled America and he has made our path more difficult as a result.’
[. . .]
“I reject George Bush’s radical new vision of a government that comforts the comfortable at the expense of ordinary Americans,” Kerry said. “George Bush’s vision does not live up to the America I enlisted in the Navy to defend.”
[. . .]
Kerry was joined by crew members of a Navy gunboat he commanded in Vietnam, where he won a Silver Star, Bronze Star and three Purple Hearts. Introducing Kerry was former Sen. Max Cleland of Georgia, who lost both legs and an arm in Vietnam combat. It is all part of Kerry’s core argument that his military experience gives him unique credibility among the Democratic contenders to confront Mr. Bush on national security issues.
“I am running so we can keep America’s promise — to reward the hard work of middle class Americans and pull down the barriers that stand in their way and in the way of those struggling to join them,” Kerry said.
[. . .]
“Americans have always had the extraordinary courage to do what’s right for the country,” said Kerry. “He (Bush) has turned it into a game for the privileged.”
And then the oops:
“Some in my party want to get rid of all tax cuts — including those for working families,” he said. “That’s wrong. We need to be on the side of America’s middle class and I’ve proposed a tax cut for them because it’s the right way to strengthen our economy.”
My plan was to blog Kerry’s announcement, let him speak for himself, and congratulate him. I was so READY to give him a good day as he announces. And if the wins the nomination, to enthusiastically support him. And then he does that, and the nature of this blog post has to change because he slams other Democrats for doing the right thing. It’s like the guy REALLY just doesn’t get it. Dean was slamming other Democrats for NOT doing the right thing, for supporting the right’s agenda of tax cuts and causing massive deficits and getting rid of the government so corporations could take over. But Kerry tries to distort Dean’s position as a trick to get votes. The POINT of Dean’s campaign is no more tricks to get votes, no more kowtowing to the right, adult responsibility with money, restore the soul of the Democratic Party… Kerry indicates here that he sees politics as posturing and playing to what he thinks the public wants to hear.
Update – Just to be clear, what Dean wants to do is repeal the Bush tax cuts. He doesn’t want to get rid of “all” tax cuts, as Kerry said. And the Bush tax cuts didn’t go to “the middle class’ and certainly not to “working families.” Kerry should pretend they did, just to get votes.