Friday, December 28, 2007


Paul lays an egg

The average American knows pretty much two things about Abraham Lincoln: (A) He was president during the War Between the States, and (B) he freed the slaves. Mention Lincoln's first inaugural, in which he proposed a constitutional amendment to protect slavery in the South, or his wartime abuses, such as his suspension of habeas corpus and his forced deportation of an opposition Member of Congress, and you'll get raised eyebrows at best and shrugged shoulders at worst. "But, but ... the man freed the slaves!" you'll be told.

This past Sunday, presidential wannabe Ron Paul did something that no candidate in recent memory has ever done: he dissed Abraham Lincoln. On national television. Lincoln's decision to raise troops to force the Southern states to stay in the Union was a "mistake," said Paul. Why he didn't just say that he wasn't going to debate something that occurred 150 years ago is absolutely beyond me. Indeed, a presidential candidate who can't parry a non-consequential query isn't worth two cents as far as I'm concerned.

I don't entirely disagree with Paul's assertion that Lincoln made a mistake in 1861; however, I'm smart enough to know that a presidential candidate who suggests that any part/portion of Lincoln's war effort was wrong is going to come across as a nut ... and a big nut, at that. If there's one president Americans admire universally it's Abraham Lincoln. (Paul should've thrown in some disparaging words about George Washington and Princes Di and made it a hat-trick.)

The Campaign for Working Families had this to say about Ron Paul's Meet the Press performance:

"Ron Paul’s performance on Meet the Press Sunday was a disaster. Host Tim Russert forced Paul to concede that he too had loaded up spending bills with 'earmarks' that would benefit only his district. He then tried to argue, disingenuously in my view, that he was justified in doing so because he would later vote against the bills, knowing full well that they would pass. But this hypocrisy was the least of Paul’s problems.

"Before the interview was over, he said he would vote against the Civil Rights Act of 1964 if it came up today, admitted that he had called Ronald Reagan, 'a dramatic failure,' and insisted we shut down the CIA, the Department of Homeland Security and withdraw all U.S. troops from everywhere in the world. Our enemies must be praying he wins!

"But the real kicker was his attack on Abraham Lincoln – the first Republican president in our nation’s history. According to Paul, Lincoln should have just bought the slaves. I can’t remember the last time, if ever, a Republican presidential candidate managed to attack both Ronald Reagan and Abraham Lincoln in one interview, but Paul managed to pull it off.

"The real mystery is why anyone who loved Reagan could support this guy who is the exact opposite of what Reagan stood for."

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