Republicans Continue To Forget 9/11 Happened

Source: Air America
The Ron Reagan Show

Ron Reagan follows the lead of Chris Matthews and takes the GOP to task for their fudging of facts.

CHRIS MATTHEWS: What have they done, the Republican Party, for the people?

Good question! In the wake of the retirement announcements of Democratic Senators Chris Dodd and Byron Dorgan, “Hardball” host Chris Mathews had a couple of campaign strategists on to discuss the political implications for both parties. Republican Todd Harris was the target of that pointed query and he didn’t seem eager to offer an answer. I suppose he should have known better; when Chris gets his dander up, ducking his questions is a bit like waving a pork chop under the muzzle of a pit bull:

TODD HARRIS: Well Chris, as you well know, voters don’t decide elections.

MATTHEWS: No, I’m asking you a question: what has the Republican Party done for the people in the last ten, twelve years?

You gotta feel a bit sorry for the likes of Todd Harris. Here he is trying to be optimistic about the future of the Republican Party, but its past keeps screwing things up. American’s memories may be short, but most folks haven’t quite forgotten the national disaster that unfolded during 8 years of Republican venality and incompetence. And if they have, Chris Mathews is happy to remind them:

MATTHEWS: You had a president who signed every single spending bill when the Republican Party was in power; you had Katrina, which was a disaster; Iraq, which most people think was dishonest and we shouldn’t be there; an Afghan war that won’t end; well, we haven’t been hit since 9/11, but of course 9/11 does count. What would you brag about?

At this point, Mr. Harris should probably have just rolled over and exposed his soft underbelly in a gesture of abject submission. Instead, perhaps out of sheer panic, perhaps because he’s become accustomed to the friendlier climate over at Fox News, he reached for a familiar

Republican talking-point:

HARRIS: First of all, the Bush Administration kept the country safe.

MATTHEWS: Well except for one day, there was one day.

HARRIS: Hold on a minute.

Way to go, Todd! Why not walk right into the spinning propeller blades?

MATTHEWS: So I just wanted to get the Republican bragging points straight here. So the Republican Party has kept us safe, except for 9/11. Is that the argument? No really, because you had the worst attack on the American homeland in history, but you’re bragging about your ability to defend the country. Because, you say, you defended America except for 9/11, that’s your defense, right?

Exactly! Doesn’t it strike you as - how shall I put this? – certifiably insane that Republicans still go around insisting that they are the party of National Security when, after all, it was on their watch that we suffered the greatest security breach since the British set fire to the White House? And have Todd Harris and his GOP friends forgotten what happened next? Osama bin Laden allowed to escape at Tora Bora… too few resources directed to the campaign in Afghanistan, leading to the reemergence of the Taliban… an arrogant, dishonestly conceived foray into Iraq, also mismanaged, which cost thousands of American lives, tens of thousands of Iraqi lives and roughly a trillion dollars and counting, all of which was funded by the bank of China to which we are now deeply in debt. And don’t even get me started on the nauseatingly shameful policy of torture instituted by the Bush/Cheney crowd. Thanks, Republicans. You’ve sure got plenty to brag about.

Give Harris credit for doggedness, though. He kept flailing for some kind of response:

HARRIS: When I decide to write a book about the history of the last 20 years of the Republican Party, I’d be happy to talk to you about that.

MATTHEWS: Just give me one!

HARRIS: My job is to win elections in 2010.

That’ll be a short chapter. Chris gave Harris one more shot at the question of Republican accomplishments, and this time his guest chose the correct answer:

MATTHEWS: Tell me what the Republican Party has done for this country in the last ten to twenty years. (PAUSE) Thank you Steve McManhon, thank you Todd Harris.

That's right. Nothing.