Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The truth about troop support

(Excerpt) Hat tip to leftedgenorth

Cutting to the chase -- and, perhaps more than anything I've seen in recent years, truly defining the difference between the two parties -- is that the worst grade received by a Senate Democrat was higher than the best grade granted a Republican. GOP-lite Ben Nelson (D-NE) received the lowest grade of any Democrat with a B- while Lincoln Chafee (R-RI), Olympia Snowe (R-ME) and Arlen Specter (R-PA) managed a C grade from IAVA.

And, when I averaged the scores of both the Democratic and Republican caucuses by assigning the numeric midpoint of the letter grade received by each Senator, which party truly supports the troops was made remarkably clear: The 44 Democrats and Jeffords had an average military-support grade of B+, while the 55 Republicans, who beat their chests with disgusting regularity about how strong they are on military issues, averaged a pathetic D.

And how about the guys Americans will be voting on in two weeks? Republican Senator Mike DeWine -- you know, he's the guy who starts one of his campaign's television ads with "While they're fighting for us abroad, he's fighting for them at home" -- came in with a D+. His opponent, Democrat Sherrod Brown, was given a B rating for his military votes in the House, despite DeWine's bogus claim in an October 1 Meet the Press debate that Brown "has voted against funding for the military when it really counted."

Let's look at some of the other GOP stalwarts trying to keep their Senate seats this year by telling voters how much they fight for military families. George Allen (R-VA), Conrad Burns (R-MT) and James Talent (R-MO) couldn't manage to get over a D+. John Ensign (R-NV), Jon Kyl (R-AZ) and Rick Santorum (R-PA) were all rated a lowly D- by the largest group dedicated to the troops and Veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Of course, of those Republican Senators, only Burns has actually served in the military himself.

And here's more stunning hypocrisy: In May, 2006, while giving a speech at the Nevada Republican Convention, Mr. D-minus himself, John Ensign, said "Democratic leaders like Nancy Pelosi and Ted Kennedy -- let me tell you, I say this without reservation -- they have hurt our military" and, of Kennedy, Ensign once said "Every time Ted Kennedy gets up and speaks (against the war) he undermines our troops."

Pelosi and Kennedy both received a B+ rating from IAVA.

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