Did Kerry Really Vote For Bush's War?

Here's what Bush said in 2002: Al Franken Show's blog:
Q Mr. President, how important is it that that resolution give you an authorization of the use of force?

BUSH: That will be part of the resolution, the authorization to use force. If you want to keep the peace, you've got to have the authorization to use force. But it's -- this will be -- this is a chance for Congress to indicate support. It's a chance for Congress to say, we support the administration's ability to keep the peace. That's what this is all about.

Remember? Bush said he wanted the authorization to use force so that he'd have a strong bargaining chip at the United Nations--and that the U.N. would get new inspectors in, and that, maybe, this would lead to Saddam disarming without a war.

That's why Kerry voted for the resolution. As he said at the time,

Let me be clear, the vote I will give to the President is for one reason and one reason only: To disarm Iraq of weapons of mass destruction, if we cannot accomplish that objective through new, tough weapons inspections in joint concert with our allies.

And we did get new, tough weapons inspections in joint concert with our allies. And then Bush blew it by invading anyway.

It wasn't just possible to support the resolution without supporting Bush's war--avoiding war was the specific reason Bush gave to support the resolution. There's nothing incoherent about Kerry's position. Bush blew it. The resolution had the effect (getting inspectors back in) that Kerry had intended. He was right. W was wrong.

(Oh, and when Bush's spokesman says "John Kerry voted for the war"--it's a lie.)


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