This morning Mark Kirk formally entered the Senate race. He's said he was running to "restore ethics and integrity to Illinois government." I guess by "ethics and integrity" he means lying better so you don't get caught. Mark has never had any political consequences for the false statements he made to convince his district that we needed to invade Iraq.
In a 2002 debate with opponent Hank Perritt, Kirk said to Prof. Perrit:
On October 8, 2002, Kirk spread more lies on the House floor in support of the invasion of Iraq. First, he spread a discredited report by Judith Miller about an attempted purchase of a nuclear centrifuge:
The New York Times recently reported Iraqi agents attempted to purchase 114,000 parts of a nuclear centrifuge to refine fissile material for a nuclear bomb.
He went on to spread this lie about Adnan Ihsan Saeed al-Haideri who was said to have reported on 20 WMD facilities:
Last year, Adnan Ihsan Saeed al-Haideri1, an Iraqi defector, reported that he visited 20 secret facilities dedicated to producing nuclear, biological and chemical weapons. He supported his report with copies of Iraqi government contracts and technical specifications. It is clear that Iraq is advancing program to develop weapons of mass destruction in violation of its commitments imposed by the UN Security Council. [Kirk has finally scrubbed this old website with the entire speech, but I copied it a long time ago. Click on the link for the speech in it's entirety.]
We later learned that this was another one of those discredited Judith Miller reports.
Mark said that his position in Naval Intelligence gave him special access and knowledge and that he had personal knowledge that there were WMD in Iraq, but it seem that he was just reading a discredited columnist in the New York Times or as I've always wondered, maybe he fed her the mis-information, there is a line in the above link that she got it from "a military intelligence officer". In the end Miller revealed that her source was Scooter Libby, already scheduled to be the fall guy, but Kirk was certainly willing to spread the word. Last year, the Dan Seals campaign uncovered a little discussed piece in Congressional Quarterly that said that Kirk was one of nine republican congressmen chosen by Bush to sell the war in Congress:
Today, former Bush Administration Press Secretary Scott McClellan outlined how the Bush administration and its allies systematically misled the American people in the buildup to the war in Iraq. As Congressional Quarterly reported, Rep. Mark Kirk was one of nine House members handpicked by President Bush in 2002 to craft the language to go to war with Iraq.
If Kirk's participation in the sale of the Iraq war shows ethics and integrity, I need a copy of that new version of the dictionary.
It's likely that few will care about these old lies told by Mark Kirk to support war, but they speak volumes about his character and what he was willing to do to prop up Bush, Cheney and his old mentor Donald Rumsfeld.