Tuesday, April 06, 2004

What, Me Worry?

Presidential candidate John Kerry, responding to questions from a number of reporters for regional newspapers, said he had "plenty of time" to define himself to the American people, brushing aside criticism that he's been on vacation and in the hospital more lately than on the campaign trail, allowing the Rovians to nuke him with several million dollars worth of TV advertizing. (New York Times story here.)

Does Kerry even get it, that he's behind the eightball already? Not from the way he talked to these reporters: "We have to get out there and make sure people know who I am, what I stand for," he said. "We'll be doing that." Don't you just love that use of the future tense ... "we will be doing that, eventually, when I finish fiddling around with ski vacations and picking dead leaves off the ivy."

Kerry only got combative "when told that some conservatives were criticizing him for being a Roman Catholic who supported policies, like abortion rights and same-sex unions, that are at odds with Catholic teaching." "Who are they?" he demanded of his questioner. "Name them. Are they the same legislators who vote for the death penalty, which is in contravention of Catholic teaching?"

He added: "I'm not a church spokesman. I'm a legislator running for president. My oath is to uphold the Constitution of the United States in my public life. My oath privately between me and God was defined in the Catholic church by Pius XXIII [he meant John XXIII] and Pope Paul VI in the Vatican II, which allows for freedom of conscience for Catholics with respect to these choices, and that is exactly where I am. And it is separate. Our constitution separates church and state, and they should be reminded of that."

Sadly, he jumps about two feet high, still, when poked with the word "liberal": "Mr. Kerry suggested that he would not allow himself to be pigeonholed as a liberal." Nothing was learned by the Michael Dukakis experience of 1988, evidently. Absolutely nothing.

No comments: