OVER THE WEEKEND, comments made by Republican Senator Dick Lugar of Indiana concerning aspects of the Bush administration's post-Iraq policy received lots of media attention. But the senator has also commented on the Iraq speech John Kerry delivered yesterday before an audience at New York University:
"As a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Senator John Kerry has failed to participate in almost two-dozen bipartisan open oversight hearings. At these hearings, both Republicans and Democrats have offered timely criticism and helped President Bush to continue to shape, refine, and improve our policies and activities in Iraq. Without offering any alternative plans that our committee and the American people could debate, Senator Kerry has tried to argue that President Bush is concealing the truth and the potential that events in Iraq will become worse. In fact, with the participation of the administration, we have been publicly airing and examining all scenarios, including the worst outcomes. Through constructive bipartisan criticism, we believe that we have supported and strengthened the resolve and resources of our president, our troops, and the Iraqis. With our help, the Iraqis are pushing through terrorist obstacles to freedom, democracy, and a better life in a country that has suffered through decades of tyranny and has routinely committed aggression against other nations. We look forward, this week, to the visit of Prime Minister Allawi of Iraq with President Bush, his speech to a joint session of the Congress, and opportunities for Senators to question the Prime Minister and advise him on ways that we can work more successfully together."
Will the media give these remarks on Kerry the same coverage it gave to Lugar's comments on the president's Iraq policy?
Daniel McKivergan is Deputy Director for The Project for the New American Century.