New Mexico Governor and former presidential contender Bill Richardson throws his support Barack Obama and Joe Biden, subverting the detractors' calls over experience to show that what matters is judgment:
Because at a time when young men and women are dying for our country overseas, America faces a question worthy of silent reflection. And the American people are watching to see how we answer it. What is the best measure of a person's capacity to protect this country? There are often moments of great importance that go unnoticed in the unruly course of history.
And six years ago, there was a moment of great clarity and foresight. And if the world had known to listen, perhaps today there would be less heartache and sorrow. In October 2002, on a small stage before a small crowd, Barack Obama gave a speech that was barely noticed at the time.
In the midst of great fervor-brought about by an administration that questioned the patriotism of anyone who disagreed with it-Barack Obama called the coming war what it was: "a war based not on reason but on passion, not on principle but on politics." He was right!
Barack's words were prescient and brave. "I know that an invasion of Iraq without a clear rationale and without strong international support will only fan the flames of the Middle East-and strengthen the recruitment arm of Al-Qaida." He was right!
He said: "a successful war against Iraq would require a U.S. occupation of undetermined length, at undetermined cost, with undetermined consequences." He was right!
Instead, Barack Obama urged President Bush-who's never in the mood to be urged in a direction other than his own folly-to finish the fight with bin Laden and Al-Qaida. He was right!
Six years ago, in this simple but forceful speech, Barack Obama did more than just challenge President Bush. He offered a detailed vision for foreign policy-including the vigorous enforcement of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty-condemnation of human rights abuses even among our allies-and a commitment to reconciliation between Pakistan and India. He was right!
At the same time, there was another voice. After 9/11, John McCain turned his sights toward Iraq-a country that had nothing to do with 9/11-and called for a full-scale invasion. Barack Obama foresaw chaos. John McCain said we'd be welcomed as liberators, and that Iraq would pay for its own rebuilding. John McCain was wrong. Barack Obama was right!