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John Kerry tore into Karl Rove from the floor of the Senate today. You can see the video at Dembloggers: Kerry's floor speech

Here is the text (I've corrected it from the original remarks-as-written text posted elsewhere; this transcript is what Senator Kerry actually said):

Transcript of John Kerry's Floor Speech on Karl Rove's 9/11 remarks:

Last night in New York City, Karl Rove made some comments to the Conservative Party of New York that need to be discussed on this floor and that need to be apologized for.

None of us here will ever forget the hours after September 11th, the frantic calls to our families after we evacuated the capital, the evacuations themselves, the images on television -- and then the remarkable response of the American people as we came together as one to answer the attack on our homeland.

I remember being in a leadership meeting just off the chamber here at the moment that the plane hit the Pentagon and we saw the plume of smoke, and then the word came from the White House that they were evacuating and that we should evacuate. And I'll never forget the anger that I felt as we walked out of here with numbers of people running across the street, and I turned to somebody I was walking with and said, "We're at war." That was the reaction of the American people, that was the reaction of everybody in the United States Senate and Congress.

We drew strength when our firefighters ran up the stairs in New York City and risked their lives, so that others might live. When rescuers rushed into smoke and fire at the Pentagon, we took heart at their courage. When the men and women of Flight 93 sacrificed themselves to save our nation's Capitol. When flags were hanging from front porches all across America, and strangers became friends. It brought out the best in all of us in America.

That spirit of our country should never be reduced to a cheap, divisive political applause line from anyone who speaks for the President of the United States. I am proud, as my colleagues on this side are, that after September 11th all of the people of this country rallied to President Bush's call for unity to meet the danger. There were no Democrats. There were no Republicans. There were only Americans.

That's why it is really hard to believe that last night in New York the most senior advisor to the President of the United States is twisting, purposely twisting those days of unity to divide us for political gain. Rather than focusing attention on Osama Bin Laden and finding him or rather than focusing attention on smashing Al Queda and uniting our effort as we have been, he is instead challenging the patriotism of every American, who is every bit as committed to fighting terror as he is.

For Karl Rove to equate Democratic policy on terror to "indictments" or to "therapy," or to suggest that the Democratic response on 9/11 was weak, is disgraceful. Just days after 9/11, the Senate voted 98-0 and the House voted 420-1 to authorize President Bush to use "all necessary and appropriate force" against terror. And after the bipartisan vote, President Bush said, and I quote: "I am gratified that the Congress has united so powerfully by taking this action. It sends a clear message - our people are together, and we will prevail."

That's not the message that was sent by Karl Rove in New York City last night.

Last night, he said, "No more needs to be said about their motives" -- the motives of liberals. Well, I think a lot more needs to be said about Karl Rove's motives, because they're not the people's motives, they're not the motives that were expressed in that spirit that brought us together, they're not the motives of a nation that found unity in that critical moment, Democrat and Republican alike, all of us as Americans.

If the President really believes his own words, if those words have meaning, he should at the very least expect a public apology from Karl Rove and frankly, he ought to fire him.

If the President of the United States knows the meaning of those words, then he ought to listen to the plea of Kristen Breitweiser, who lost her husband when the Twin Towers came crashing down: she said, "If you're going to use 9/11, use it to make this nation safer than it was on 9/11."

Karl Rove doesn't owe me an apology, Mr. President, and he doesn't owe Democrats an apology, he owes the country an apology. He owes Kristen Breitweiser and a lot of people like her and those families an apology. He owes an apology to every one of those families who paid the ultimate price on September 11th and who expect their government to be doing all possible to keep the unity of our country and to fight an effective war on terror.

The fact is that millions of Americans across our country have serious questions about that, and they have a right to have a legitimate debate in our nation without being called names or somehow being divided in a way that does a disservice to the effort to be safer and to bring our people together.

The fact is that mothers and fathers of servicepeople spend sleepless nights now worrying about sons and daughters in humvees in Iraq that still aren't adequately armored. They're asking Washington for honesty, for results and for leadership, not for political division.

Before Karl Rove delivers another political assault, he ought to stop and think about those families and the unity of 9/11. The 9-11 Commission has given us a path to follow to try to make our nation safer. He ought to be working overtime to implement its provisions. We shouldn't be letting ninety-five percent of container ships come into our country without ever being physically inspected. We shouldn't be leaving nuclear and chemical plants without enough protection.

So Mr. President, until the work is done of truly responding in the way that Kristen Breitweiser said we should, making America safer, using 9/11 for that purpose only, we shouldn't see people trying to question the patriotism of Americans who are working in good faith to accomplish those goals. Before wrapping themselves in the memory of 9-11, and shutting their eyes and ears to the truth, they ought to remember what America is really about -- that leadership is not insult or intimidation, it's the strength of making America safe -- and they ought to remember what their responsibility is to every single American -- and they ought to just focus on the work of doing that. That's what Americans expect of us and that's what's going to make this country safer in the long run. I yield the floor.

Senator Johnson of S. Dakota asked Senator Kerry whether he thinks Karl Rove understands that Democrats and Independents also serve in our armed forces and also take the defense of our country very seriously. Kerry's response was:
Mr. President, let me say to the Senator first of all every one of us are proud of him and proud of his family and proud of the service of his son.

And I remember talking to the Senator from South Dakota about how he felt when his son was in harm's way. And so if ever there was a clear statement about the insult of Karl Rove's comments, it is the question asked by the Senator. I don't know if Karl Rove understands that, his comment certainly doesn't indicate it. But I'll tell you this -- it raises the question of whether or not he is, as many have suggested, prepared to say anything for political purposes. And I think he owes your son, I think he owes every Democrat --

Look, I've been to Iraq, I met countless soldiers who came up to me and said, "I voted for you" or people who said "I support you" or people who were just Democrats. And this comment by Karl Rove insults every single one of them, who responded to the call of our country, as did every senator on this side of the aisle in voting to go into Afghanistan and in supporting the troops across the board. And I think that if we're going to get things done and find the common ground here, this is not the way for the most senior advisor to the president to be talking about our country.

I remember the storm created over the last week over the comments of a senator. Well, here's a senior advisor to the President of the United States who has insulted every Democrat in this country -- every patriot in this country -- who is trying to do their best to protect our troops and provide good policy for this nation.

And to suggest that there was a weak response when we voted 98 to nothing is an insult to that vote, and to the unity of the moment, and to the words of his own President. And I think he owes an apology to your son and to all of those soldiers.

Edited to add: Thanks to Pamela for first making me aware of this speech and the link to Dembloggers and for posting the transcript of the remarks-as-prepared (which I revised to match Kerry's delivered remarks) on the blog at

Originally posted to Noisy Democrat on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 06:36 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Kerry also made some powerful comments (4.00)
    in response to a question by Senator Nelson (IIRC); if I get a chance I'll add those to the entry, but you can see for yourself by watching the Dembloggers video
  •  Senator Jake Reed is give'm Hell ...right now (4.00)
    on CSPAN II
  •  I am kind of confused (none)
    Why this comment is so shocking to everyone on the left side. Its anything that they will pull to use 9/11 to get the focus of the pathetic war in Iraq and the horrible job of Bush's domestic policy. The right will get away with this and everything else they always say. I am not holding my breathe for Karl Rove to pull a Dick Durban who should of never apologized.
    •  The point is (4.00)
      Democrats aren't taking this crap lying down anymore.
      •  Why did Durbin Apologize Again? (4.00)
        I thought he took that crap lying down.

        I think more accurate - Democrats are taking less of the Republican crap lying down these days.  We're getting better, but we're still not in good shape.  We still get walked all over.  We still have liberal members of our Congressional caucus supporting a repeal of the first amendment because they are scared of being branded anti-American and having it hurt their re-election bids.  We have senators in our caucus supporting the repeal of the first amendment even though they aren't facing re-election in '06 because maybe someday it will come back to haunt them.  Until we are willing to always (or at least more often than not) stand up for what's right and what we believe in, then we will be walked all over.  We have to believe in ourselves, and our elected officials have to believe in themselves and the Democratic party principles before we can start dishing out the crap instead of just reacting to it.


        Organizing my thoughts about how to win from 2005 forward -

        by FredFred on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 07:21:16 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Because Mayor Daley is a short-sighted hack (4.00)
          who couldn't support a brother Democrat in his own state and see the big picture, that's why Durbin apologized.

          "My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die."

          by Kerrycrat on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 07:55:14 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm not sorry that Durbin (3.80)
            appologized. After watching Hardball and Oberman then flipping over to CNN I realised that the story was retold as back and forth comments, Durbin apologizes and Rove and Admin refuse too. When I think about winning I think about people sitting in their living room watching T.V tonight , shaking their heads and starting to really get pissed at Bush and Rove. The poll numbers show that their in deep shit for this war and it's the stupidest time to be coming out attacking the Dem's, at least in the people's eyes. ( of course for P.R purposes regarding the DSM it's a desperate option to shift the focus.)And then on CNN that bald older guy that always does stories on polls showed several clips of the Bush admin trying to tie 9/11 with Iraq and basically stating that the people aren't buying it anymore. So it was good news on all the decent shows tonight.
          •  BTW Daley's in trouble (none)
            Big, kickback scandal.  Talking-to-the- federal- grand- jury type trouble. And how better to get the feds to be gentle with you  and your kin than coming to the aid of the Attorney General's boss?
      •  Too soon to say that. (none)
        They are getting a bit better yes.
        And Kerry's speech was good, and he should be applauded for standing tall and speaking.
        Let's see what happens next. Now that he has called for an apology by Rove,  does he now sit down and feel he did his part, or does he keep it up and find ways to punish the administration until Rove apologizes or resigns. We know that's what the Rps would do.

        So let's wait a while and see if ther's any bite to that bark.

        "The ONLY way we are going to win elections is to stand up for what we believe in. Deep conviction." Howard Dean. 6/22/05

        by Lords on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 08:38:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  For Bush, he can't resign... (none)
          Rove is "1a" and Cheney is "1b".
          They may switch roles depending on the day.

          Bush is an empty suit figurehead.
          He can't fire one of the two guys who does the work and tells him what to do.

    •  plan (none)
      Rove knows exactly what he's doing.  Look what Kerry says - we're all in this together, fighting terrorism - it's almost a rally cry.  BushCo wants to go into Iran...they need America to rally and WANT to go after Osama, or terrorists, or whatever excuse Bush will use.  We're gonna have to put our money where our mouth is if we claim we're united in the fight against terrorism.  They'll hold us to it.

      America is beginning to unite AGAINST the war - BushCo needs to change that direction.  

      •  Go into Iran? (4.00)
        I have no doubt that they want to do that. But they have nothing to go into Iran WITH! We're already overextended in Iraq and Afghanistan. They would have to increase the size of our military when we already can't fill the positions that are authorized.

        "I love mankind; it's people I can't stand." --Linus/Peanuts

        by homogenius on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 07:54:16 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  none of us are "shocked" (4.00)
      I cant even remember the last time this administration shocked me, as I am so numbed by the barrage of evil.

      What makes this different is that the REST of the country has finally begun to catch on, so Dems cant let this one slide, especially since poll numbers about war/Iraq have been abysmal the last few months.

      They need to jump on this crap and change even more minds. The statement Rove made is laughably stupid, we need to make sure everyone can see why.

      Reigning Welterweight Female Piefighter since 1998

      by ablington on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 07:19:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It doesn't surprise me either. (none)
        As a matter of fact, it just proves my point. Something I said in a comment last night about O'reilly and his liberal comments.
        All these right wingnuts both on t.v. and radio are getting their  talking points directly from the White House, which means directly from Karl Rove. All the shit that is going on, the war in Iraq is completly out of control, G.M. and Ford cutting jobs, the economy is getting fucked, big time, the little shit of a President, is addressing high school audiences talking up his social security plan, because no one else will listen to him, his poll numbers are dropping like a brick, so they have to change the tone. Call liberals traitors and enemy sympathizers, that will do it. It is the master plan, all the time spent apologizing and nothing gets done, nothing gets better. It is all Bullshit, and God bless Howard Dean who refused to apologize for speaking the truth. I can't wait to see what Howard will say about this. It will be honest and from his gut, as usual, and thank God, he won't apologize. Rove is a Nazi, and that is a fact.
    •  Okay, picture this (4.00)
      There's a guy that hates you. You know he hates you because he's taken a couple of verbal swipes at you before. This guy not only hates you and treats you like a wimpy nobody but he's trying to get you fired and he's been spreading rumors about you in your industry too, so that nobody else will hire you.

      Your boss is falling for his bullshit, your coworkers are starting to treat you like a chump and your contacts in the industry are starting to dwindle.

      You're getting sick of it. I mean really, really sick of it.

      One day, this prick decides to announce that you've been embezzling money from the company and you're sleeping with your boss' wife - all of which is a damned lie. Snap Before you know it, you've broken his jaw in a rage.

      You hit your limit for patience for him and his crap.

      So, to use the metaphor, you may still be moping into work, but I've hit my limit.

      Make sense now?

    •  It's not so much shock for me (none)
      but I ama  bit surprised that Rove himself said this. Usually they leave the red meat type of stuff for someone else to say and then the White House plays good cop. Remember that awful Justice Sunday and Dobson said Dems are against people of faith. Bush was asked about it at the news conference and he said that of course Dems dont oppose the nominee b/c they are people of faith. So the messae gets out there, but the WH stays clean. For it to come from the WH, and from ROve, and man who doesnt speak that often in public, tells me they see the poll numbers are bad.

      Republicans believe life starts at conception and ends at birth- Rep. Barney Frank(D-MA).

      by jj32 on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 07:36:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Exactly right. (none)
      One thing for sure, from this episode the Dems will get a lesson in what conviction means.  Rove is never going to apologize no matter what they do. Indeed, he may expand on his statement, rub it in a bit more. Remember, these guys play only to their base, and their base agrees with those sentiments 100%.  

      It would be interesting to see what the Dems do then.  My guess is that in time they will forget about it, drop the whole thing, content in knowing that they at least tried to do something about it.

      "The ONLY way we are going to win elections is to stand up for what we believe in. Deep conviction." Howard Dean. 6/22/05

      by Lords on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 09:18:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  They expanded their base because (none)
        of 9/11 and that expansion is starting to float away. If people are floating because of Iraq it won't get better for Bush. Another war won't get better for them either. The only card they have is something that happens on the home front. That's what I'm watching. I won't accuse them of creating an attack(not yet) but I could imagine terror alerts and info leaked about potential attacks thwarted, etc.
  •  Good to hear Kerry's words. (4.00)
    Very well stated and glad that he sounded off on this nosense coming from the other side.

    I think this is "Blame the Democrats" time by the GOP leadership and followings. We better get ready...its coming....and no more Durbin take back statements. Thanks, JK!!

    "These guys are biggest bunch of lying crooks I have ever seen" John Kerry

    by alnc on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 07:16:29 PM PDT

  •  Fuckin A. (4.00)
    Stick it to em John, now twist it in the wound and yank it out!
  •  To hell with the POTUS (3.40)
    That slug-like slob is on OUR dime, sucking down OUR hard-earned tax dollars.

    WE ought to demand Rove be FIRED.

    WE, the government of, by and for the PEOPLE, ought to march his pudgy soft ass out the door.

    It's liberals in blue states that fund his paycheck.  I say cut him off, NOW!!

  •  Wow... (4.00)
    Impressive speech. Very balanced, and not at all partisan. for purely selfish reasons, i would have preferred a partisan response. But this is much better. Well done.

    "Truth often suffers more by the heat of its defenders than the arguments of its opposers." William Penn

    by jeeves on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 07:30:29 PM PDT

  •  As strong a statement (4.00)
    as we needed. A more or less point by point refutation of Rove's nonsense. It would seem like most people would recognize that Karl Rove is a despicable hack, but I don't trust that anymore. If there's anything that we've learned from the Swifties is we have to forcefully & unequivocally refute their lies. And not wait for the next news cycle.

    I think Rove is overplaying his hand. He's an incredible jerk!

    The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all- John F Kennedy

    by vcmvo2 on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 07:37:51 PM PDT

    •  Rove is desperate (none)
      all the huddiling with the chimp has produced no real winnable strategies.
      his desperation came out in public yesterday,
      after months of festering inside.
      •  I hope it's a reflection (4.00)
        of his waning grasp on American politics. He should be run out of town on a rail along with all the other punchdrunk so-called Representatives in Congress.

        Kerry's right- Bush should fire him.

        The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all- John F Kennedy

        by vcmvo2 on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 08:27:24 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The one show (none)
      that bothered me tonight was Scarborough doing an interview just prior to Rove's speech last night. I wasn't surprised at all to hear Rove's bullshit I just found it hard to not scream back at the t.v. He allowed Rove to frame the Dems as those in Move.On apposing Afghanistan, or Michael Moore, etc, and it really was bullshit.
      •  That's all that they're about (none)
        BS. They lie so often & at such volume that they begin to believe their own lies. How do you prevent yourself from screaming at the TV especially if you watch Scarborough- Yick!

        The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all- John F Kennedy

        by vcmvo2 on Fri Jun 24, 2005 at 12:15:44 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  What the "people " think (none)
    The people think that the repugs and the dems are a bunch of whiney do-nothings.  Who said what about whom is totally irrelvant to the majority of Americans.    Do we not have more pressing  issues in this country other than exchanging insults?
    •  I respect your spirit (4.00)
      in this comment, but let me ask you a few things.

      Do "the people" know that Democrats (Kennedy & Bayh) led the fight to grant additional money, on top of the Iraq supplemental, to armor humvees in production for our troops in Iraq?

      Do "the people" know that the Republican dominated Congress recently slashed veterans benefits (again)?

      I'm going to hazard a guess that most Americans know nothing of the kind. I'm going to guess they thing Democrats do nothing good for the country or our troops at war because that's what Republicans tell them. I'm going to guess that most Americans think Republicans can't get anything good done because Democrats don't tell Americans that Republicans are too busy doing harm to the country and our troops at war.

      The politics of persona and nasty rhetoric has this country by the ears - and they're running away with everything. We either jump in hard, with both feet, or we're going to lose it all - fast.

      •  Bravo, (none)
        couldn't agree more. The press in fact accuse us of sitting on our laurels and letting the Repugs frame the agenda. We need to also consider smacking the media with our outrage. We create the stories for them. If the 9/11 group can come out and demand an apology we should be able to stand up for ourselves as well and consider re-framing to include those 9/11 victims, at least as a reminder of what it was really like back then.
  •  Love it (4.00)
    A beautiful "How dare you?" speech.

    Indeed, it's the country Karl Rove is assaulting.

    "But your flag decal won't get you into heaven anymore"--Prine

    by Cathy on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 08:03:15 PM PDT

  •  I adore big John (none)
    I truely do, but this is too long!! Gawd, sometimes I think this man woulda been our pres if he just coulda learned short and sweet.

    Check out the pics from the most recent NYC Kossak Meetup!

    by JaneKnowles on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 08:04:22 PM PDT

    •  Heartbreaking (none)
      It was so effing close!  When I read speeches like this by Kerry I think about how different things would be today if Ohio had gone the other way.  Sigh..........

      "The state has no place in the bedrooms of the nation." - Pierre Trudeau

      by fishhead on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 11:28:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  smells like a set-up (none)
    it's looking too scripted.  if it turns out to be the policy for new intel fixes to go into iran or syria, then what?

    it's best to be suspicious of motives, after all, this is a manipulative lying liar and there's zero this shitepoke wouldn't do to increase their power

    not so sure we have a democracy anymore.  maybe we already have crossed that line into dictatorship? if we haven't yet, it's very close

    •  I think (none)
      it's the poll's and the media coverage of both Iraq and the DSM these last few weeks.
    •  No, I think (none)
      the intel fixes to come are the OBL location. Remember, our CIA director was just bragging that they have a really good idea of where he is ~~ dollars to donuts, he will be in either Iran or Syria, although there was that lowball from Stevie saying about Pakistan (just to throw us librals off).

      The fault, dear Brutus, lies not within ourselves, but within the stars

      by triciawyse on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 09:50:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  the only thing (none)
        that holds me up on thinking this is that our army is zapped. We're re-using the same guys, recrutements going lower than ever and a draft would have this SUV country freaking out and in the streets. Iran could be bombed as a tactical strategy but the Muslims would just come pouring into Iraq to fight us their. O.K, so I admit that Bush is stupid but I can't see the people around him conjuring up the right time for this. 9/11 was almost party time for the Neo Cons, perfect excuse, but what now? Hmmm.
  •  as usual (4.00)
    Kerry makes his point with about 10 unnecessary paragraphs.

    I agree with him, but zzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

  •  This is a diversion (none)
    Eloquent speech, but how about keeping the focus on the DSM, the lies that led to war, the economy, and everything else.  This is pure Rovian bullshit.  We focus on him apologizing and they steal the store while we're not looking.

    sign the petition at

    by DrKate on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 09:07:33 PM PDT

    •  Rove turned up the (none)
      volume, we turn it up louder. Email media and reps, remind them to stay focused on the truth, remind them of how much we love our country and what we're willing to do for it, reming them of the truth and point out what Rove is up to. They all but accused him of this on three different shows tonight. The media knows whats going on but they won't keep this story and shed light on what's behind it if we give up.
    •  I don't think so (4.00)
      The whole speech basically said, "Why does Rove hate Americans? Why doesn't Rove support and recognize the troops?"

      Rove may have meant it as a diversion, but I think it'll backfire. People will be more willing to listen to what Dems have to say (DSM, for example) when they're already good and pissed off.

      So, Mr. Rove, why do you hate our troops?

      A wise man will not leave the right to the mercy of chance, nor wish it to prevail through the power of the majority.

      by hstokes on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 11:31:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  At this point (none)
    the only appropriate justice this filthy, traitorous piece of shit deserves is a firing squad. I have no problem saying it because it's how I feel about the whole lying, amoral, malevolent lot of them. They are desecrating the memory of all those who perished on that day. On that day, there were firefighters sprinting UPSTAIRS while the buildings were coming down. That kind of courage is gut wrenching and this little maniacle wannabee Goebels has the nerve to say that shit. I'm pretty sure that nobody was wondering whether they were conservative or liberal. Well, if there is anything such as Karma, or poetic justice, then Rove along with his puppet Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, all of them, will end up charged with war crimes and executed. On second thought, maybe the better way to go would be to throw them all out into the street in lower Manhattan and let New Yorkers give them what they deserve.

    I apologize if this comment goes too far but as far as I'm concerned, there is no punishment that is too severe for these evil fucks.

  •  Vintage Kerry 2004 (none)
    Just watched the clip. It's like deja vu all over again as Kerry takes twenty minutes to say what he should have said in two.
    •  you know... (4.00)
      It's comments like this that make 100% clear why the Dems are having such a hard time taking anything back.

      I may not be the most political savvy person on the planet. I may not even be in the top 500 of this blog. But Kerry is one of the most important men in the party, and he's still willing to stand up and fight for this nation and Democrats. He not only deserves our support when he comes out swinging, he needs it. Every single bit of it. So does Dean. So does Reid. So does anybody else who'll say "Fuck you, Mr. President, we're tired of your shit."

      Taking pot shots and criticizing Kerry now won't do anybody any good, but it could hurt a lot. Repubs win and keep winning because no matter what, their guys have a solid wall of support behind them. The DKos is one of the most powerful resources for progressives on the Internet, but constant snide comments undermines the entire thing.

      A wise man will not leave the right to the mercy of chance, nor wish it to prevail through the power of the majority.

      by hstokes on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 11:36:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You found 20 minutes worth of tape? (none)
      Damn. I thought it was only 7. And there I was checking the transcript for accuracy, too.

      I thought it was an impassioned speech and he gave it with a strong delivery.

    •  It's the US Senate for goodness sakes... (none)
      Where oratory is the modus operandi.  It is the way the branch speaks.  Look how Kossacks got all enamoured with Byrd's hour long speeches when he was addressing Rice or Abu Gonzales during confirmation hearings.

      Given that there's no Question Period/Time as in the UK, Canada or other Westminster derived systems you're not going to get short and snappy deliveries.   Additionally, look at Senates in other countries (or House of Lords for the UK) - bloviating is the norm, not the exception.

      Look at when Galloway spoke to the Senate - he delivered it in an oratic style to fit the setting.  If he was in the House of Commons in the UK - he would have been even more rabid and direct - like his victory acceptance speech in London when he slammed the electoral officers for fraud.

      Kerry's not on the stump, nor was he at a press conference.  His speech is on the record - and this is one of the cuts in Bush's death by one thousands.

      "now this is not the end, it is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning." W. Churchill

      by Thor Heyerdahl on Fri Jun 24, 2005 at 12:58:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  shit (none)
    why couldnt he talk like that when he was running for president?

    (though im sure it sounded a lot more dull than it reads :)

    •  you said it... (none)
      Kerry is dull, there is just no getting around it.

      absolute freedom for one individual undoubtedly limit's the freedom of another.

      by jbou on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 09:36:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  This drives me crazy (none)
        This is going to sound very deprecating, and I know I'll regret posting this but...

        I'm sorry, do Americans have ADD or something?  Lead in the water?  Why is it that in most places in the industrialized world people like Kerry - experienced, thoughtful, articulate - would be easily entrusted with the highest office, but in the US this is somehow a defect?  WTF?

        Interesting statistic I heard reported on CBC today.  Last year in Canada, 87% of respondents reported having read a book in the past six months, in the US the figure was 51%.  I have to wonder if there's a relationship between that figure and the general predominance of public affairs as entertainment spectacle, a lack of interest in world events, and (incidentally) a lack of tolerance for calm, rational, thoughtful, and cogent oratory.

        "The state has no place in the bedrooms of the nation." - Pierre Trudeau

        by fishhead on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 11:34:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  51% (none)
          That seems a little high, honestly.
          •  needed to check... (none)
            I had to G that, found a 1998 U.S. study:

            50% of American adults cannot read an eighth-grade level book.

            44% of American adults do not read even one book a year (must have gone up.)

            "Messaging" is not a hollow excercise. We can brand better without gutting ourselves, IMO.

        •  hey (none)
          i was just saying he's dull, period. i voted for him, and i wouldnt mind having a dull president. id love to have a dull president than some crazy cowboy. but sadly kerry is dull and a lot of people didn't like him because of that, especially cos he was running against crazy old george.

          i go on rants all the time, and i like that kerry goes on rants all the time too. i lvoe ranting, shit im ranting right now. but i expect many people are annoyed by rants and kerry rants a hell of a whole lot. they're great rants, but his delivery is lacking. same thing happened to gore. tony blair rants all the time, but he's good at it, you see. he's got that british thing going on. kerry just sounds dull. dull dull dull. i like the guy but he's dull.

      •  Really? (4.00)
        I saw him at several live rallies and was blown away by his charisma. So were lots of other people I knew. "Dull Kerry" is a meme the media started passing around in 2004. Back in 2000, the media kept going on about how charismatic he was. Seems like somebody gave them the word that they shouldn't call him charismatic anymore, and they all fell in line.

        When I talk to people who don't know the MSM dogma about Kerry, they're always surprised to hear that he's described as uncharismatic. Especially people who've seen him in person, rather than just on TV.

      •  YMMV (none)
        It's funny how people who think Kerry is dull say it as if everyone sees it that way. Whereas those of us who think he's charismatic and riveting don't tend to assume everyone shares our views. Maybe it's because the MSM has been repeating the "Kerry is dull" meme since 2004 (before that, they described him as charismatic, presumably until they got directives to state otherwise). Anyway, believe it or not, plenty of people find Kerry very inspiring.
        •  i believe it (none)
          but i find him dull. why you all gotta assume that i find him dull cos the media told me to? everyone who disagrees with something the media says gotta learn to accept that some people might independently arrive at the same conclusion too.
    •  No actually the word is it was very passionate (4.00)
      When he wanders off the "prepared remarks" you can bet it's because he's pissed.

      As for the person who asked why he couldn't have said what he wanted in 2 minutes, I would submit that nobody gives two minute speeches, not even Howard Dean.

      What about Byrd, bless him. Loved the schooling he gave Rummy, but he must have said the same thing three different times over and over. But then when you're 85 years old, you can do that.

      "My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die."

      by Kerrycrat on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 09:41:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  No, actually (none)
      His delivery was impassioned -- he was obviously pissed at Rove. Not dull at all.
  •  Kerry (4.00)

    I lucked out and caught his speech live and quickly pressed "record" on my DVR. Great speech that reminded me why I switched parties in early 2004 to vote for him.

  •  This John Kerry would have been elected (none)
    unfortuneately we got the Kerry who hob nobs with the McAulliffes and Schrums, McScummies, who've been losing elections, hence policy implementations, cuz they got no ideas and no soul, all they got is

    do NOT scare the "middle", or we'll lose.

    IF I lived in MA, I wouldn't vote for Kerry for dog catcher, he had his chance and he blew it. However, maybe he can use his 15th minute to do some good - I am sure he is more concerned about what his rich neighbors in Nantucket and Aspen and Georgetown think about him than what I think about him, but, it is good to see that I actually voted FOR something, not just AGAINST asswipe.


    •  Why not vote for this Kerry (none)
      if this is the one who runs again?
      •  no - the last election was too (none)
        important, and he did what Dukakis and Gore did - he listened to nitwits and ran an incredibly crappy campaign.  

        of course, clinton ran great campaigns to win, but, he didn't govern worth a shit - NOT as bad as bush does not equal making progress, and Clinton didn't make enough progress.  

        I am being serious - I would vote for Carter or Mondale again - they've proven themselves to be upstanding citizens, especially Carter.  At least when they lost to the lie machine the machine was relatively new --

        ALL the Democrats who've come since, who get squashed by the lie machine, who run from the lie machine, who bend to the lie machine - I think they should all be unemployed.  tens of millions of americans have lost their jobs and lifestyles in the last 2 decades, how many senior Democrats are living on food stamps from leadership mistakes?  


  •  Remarkable (4.00)
    Kerry makes a moving speech on the Senate floor that basically amounts to "Karl Rove hates our troops." He made it clear that Rove was insulting the men and women that are fighint Bush's war. He made it clear that Rove was insulting every person in America, the families and friends of the troops and victims of 9/11.

    I see the word "framed" thrown around here a lot. Well, folks, Kerry just framed this whole issue for you. It's not "distracting." It's not worthless. It's another chink in the armor. It's another point to rally people on.

    You all seem to think that the American public is hanging on the DSM or political football. Guess what? They don't care! They can't see it right now because, believe it or not, they have their lives to lead. But Rove spewing shit all over New York City? Oh, you better believe they can hear that. And after they do, some might be willing to listen. About 49 million Americans voted for Kerry, and more are defecting from Bush's team every day, and you know what they care about? People dying. You know what else they care about? Seeing this country united instead of bickering and fighting. It's clear they don't like what's going on in the Congress right now, ratings are unbelievably low!

    So Kerry writes a great speech delivering the very framing you need to ambush Rove with in the MSM and all most of you can do is criticize?

    "Rather than focusing attention on Osama Bin Laden and finding him or rather than focusing attention on smashing Al Queda and uniting our effort as we have been, he is instead challenging the patriotism of every American, who is every bit as committed to fighting terror as he is." USE THIS!!!!

    Every time Kerry gets mentioned at the dkos, most of the responses are negative. You know what? Get the fuck over it. The election is done, ok? We lost. For a lot of reasons. Kerry still has a job to do though and you still have a job to do. The world didn't end in 2004. The moon didn't turn to blood. Why is it that Kerry can still be out there fighting every single day, and most the people here who should be rallying behind every Dem who gives a fuck can still only bitch and moan?

    I'm tired of it. I'm tired of all the bickering and fighting over "my guy" and "his guy" and all that shit. Kerry is an important man who is helping and can help us more. Dean is an important man who is helping and can help us more. And Gore. And Reid. Instead of dividing up over this shit, we should be pulling together from all points of the spectrum and presenting an united front.

    Every time I see Kerry speak, I'm proud I voted for him. I do think he is one of the finest men this country has to offer right now. I admit my bias. But damnit, if you learn ANYTHING from the Repubs, it's that constant, loud, and almost blind support MATTERS. It counts. It's important. We don't have the time or the room to be this petty and small. Everybody here should pick their favorite part of Kerry's speech, pick their favorite media outlet, and hammer that fucker home.

    It might wake people up.

    A wise man will not leave the right to the mercy of chance, nor wish it to prevail through the power of the majority.

    by hstokes on Thu Jun 23, 2005 at 11:51:19 PM PDT

    •  Solidarity! (4.00)
      I've been saying this for 3 years now...this is the main reason that many to the right of us politically view us as weak...we have NO solidarity. We have not presented a unified front to anything they have said, done, or elicited us to do. I think the tenor of this speech sums up perfectly what we as Americans (not just Dems and not just Repubs) need to do to take back our country. Contrary to popular belief, we are dangerously close to losing the "war on terror"...the whole point of 9/11 was to divide us and tear our system asunder. Either we get our shit together and start working together (as Democrats first and foremost and then, simply, as Americans) or our republic may very well be doomed. That saddens me greatly and I would imagine that the founding fathers are spinning in their graves and spitting mad that we've allowed their beautiful design to deteriorate so far.

      "A journalist is someone who cannot distinguish between a bicycle accident and the end of civilization." George Bernard Shaw

      by green917 on Fri Jun 24, 2005 at 01:01:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  rove is just being a troll (none)
    and the best tactic against a troll is to ignore him.
  •  And if ROVE apologizes, (none)
    I will make out with Alan Keyes in a tub of vanilla pudding.

    Come on people. Knives out. Don't look directly into Rove's eyes, either.

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