The Harold Meyerson piece posted below should be read in conjunction with this column by Bill Kristol. The piece centers on Dick Gephardt’s recent claim that “George Bush has left us less safe and less secure than we were four years ago.” Kristol finds this absurdity to be symptomatic of the Democrats’ lack of seriousness on national security matters, a lack of seriousness that has even Bill Clinton concerned. As Kristol concludes: “There are plenty of legitimate grounds to criticize the Bush administration’s foreign policy. But the American people, whatever their doubts about aspects of Bush’s foreign policy, know that Bush is serious about fighting terrorists and terrorist states that mean America harm. About Bush’s Democratic critics, they know no such thing.
But Kristol’s Democrat bashing, though valid and worthwhile, should not obscure the special fecklessness of Gephardt. Of the five serious contenders (or formerly serious ones) he is the only one who seems, almost simultaneously, to have undermined both his chances of being nominated and his chances of being elected.
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