Dick Morris thinks the Democrats have an opportunity to ride ethics issues and a general discontent with Congress to major gains in November. Today, though, he argues that the Dems are shooting themselves in the foot by attacking President Bush’s efforts to keep the country safe from terrorism. Morris discusses the same Fox News poll we reviewed last week:
Democrats who criticize President Bush for using warrantless wiretaps to elicit information about potential terrorist activity should be aware that the American people strongly support his decision to do so.
The Fox News poll of Jan. 11 asked voters whether the president “should have the power to authorize the National Security Agency to monitor electronic communications of suspected terrorists without getting warrants, even if one end of the communication is in the United States?” By 58 percent to 36 percent, the answer was “yes.” Indeed, 42 percent of the nation’s Democrats agreed that the president should have this power. *** Respondents support renewal of the Patriot Act by 57 percent to 31 percent. (Even Democrats only oppose renewal by 40-47.)
And those who called attention to the NSA policy of warrant-less wiretaps are called “traitors” by 50 percent of the voters and “whistleblowers” by only 27 percent. Democrats opted for “traitors” by 42 percent to 34 percent.
In other words, Ann Coulter represents the Democratic mainstream better than Al Gore on this one!
Once again, liberals are misreading the public’s heavy doubts about the wisdom of the war in Iraq and our ability to win. These are pragmatic concerns, not an embrace of the left’s take on national security. In fact, there is a broad and deep consensus when it comes to homeland security, which any politician defies at the risk of losing support.
Nor did the NSA wiretaps break the law. The president’s inherent power as commander in chief allows them.