The fact of the matter is, short of voting to terminate funding for the war in the 2008 budget — something moderate and conservative Democrats are as of yet unwilling to do — we’re stuck with Bush’s war. And that is a very dangerous situation. Bush, who lied his way into Iraq, seems to be inching the nation toward a much wider war with Iran — a war that will have disastrous international implications, not the least of which will be oil shocks that will batter everyday-living standards. The symbolic vote against Bush’s escalation may be only talk. But by squelching that talk, the Republicans snuff out the minimal chance that Bush might think twice. Republicans (as well as many Democrats) already have blood on their hands. It defies comprehension that they don’t want to begin washing the stains away before it is really too late.
One non-Washington Republican who does not blanch at the site of blood is former governor Mitt Romney, a staunch supporter of both Bush’s war and escalation. Romney is scheduled, next Tuesday, to formalize for the nation what has been an open secret here in Massachusetts for more than two years: he is running for President. The Romney who will declare for the White House is a very different reptile than the one who tried, unsuccessfully, to unseat Senator Edward Kennedy before slithering into the governorship. He has shed his moderate skin as a gay-friendly, abortion-tolerant policy progressive and has bared his fangs as a right-wing ideologue. But perhaps we do Romney a disservice. Maybe he was always a right-wing radical. Maybe he played the people of Massachusetts for fools. It is a harsh — but not illogical — thought. Keep it in mind next Tuesday.
: The Editorial Page
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