Q Scott, the more serious indictment in Al Gore's rather lengthy -- and, I think, well thought-out and well worked out speech yesterday -- was not so much the --
MR. McCLELLAN: Indictment of his hypocrisy.
Q -- not so much the NSA wiretapping, but that as a part of an overall shift by the Bush administration, in the context of 9/11, to really increase and enhance the power of the executive, and to put to the side the role of the U.S. Congress. It was really a change in the way this republic works, is what Al Gore seemed to be getting at in his speech, and that the NSA wiretapping, the extraordinary measures which have been implemented for the duration of a war on terror -- which as far as we know will have no end -- has changed the way this republic has worked. What do you say to that indictment of the measures that have been taken by the --
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, maybe he has a misunderstanding of the kind of war that we're engaged in. Let me remind people: We were attacked on September 11th in New York and Washington, and some 3,000 innocent people lost their lives. This President's number one responsibility is the safety and security of the American people. He is going to do everything within his lawful power to protect Americans. If he wants to be the voice for Democrats on this debate over national security, we welcome it. The American people clearly have shown that they want us to do everything within our lawful power to save their lives and to prevent another attack from happening.
We've been fortunate since September 11th that there has not been another attack. We know that the enemy wants to inflict even greater damage on America than they did on September 11th. And this President made a solemn pledge to the American people that as long as he was President he was going to do everything within his lawful power to prevent something like that from happening again. This is a deadly, determined enemy. We've got to continue working to connect the dots. We've got to continue to stay focused on going after them and staying on the offensive, and we've also got to work to undermine their ideology, based on hatred, by spreading democracy and hope. And that's exactly what we are going to continue to do. This program, as I pointed out, is carefully reviewed approximately every 45 days to look at its value and determine whether or not it needs to continue. It has been a vital tool in our efforts to save lives and prevent attacks. All you have to do is listen to what our top intelligence officials have said about it.
Q Secondly, Walter Cronkite, the noted CBS anchor, former anchor has landed apparently in the same position as John Murtha, saying that we should withdraw our troops from Iraq. Does the President feel as Lyndon Johnson felt in the early 1970s, when Cronkite made his statements at that time that he has lost the support of middle America in this --
MR. McCLELLAN: Well, I think the American people clearly understand the importance of winning in Iraq. And we have a clear strategy to prevail in Iraq. And that's what the President has been talking to the American people about. People want our troops to come home, and the way to get our troops home is to be successful. And I think if we look at recent comments from a videotape of al Qaeda's number two man, Zawahiri, it only underscores the importance of winning in Iraq, and it underscores that the terrorists recognize the stakes involved there. They know that when we are successful in Iraq, it will be a major blow to their ambitions. Iraq is the central front in the war on terrorism, and that's why it's so critical that we continue moving forward on our strategy for victory. And that's exactly what we'll do. Withdrawal would be a disaster.
Q The Supreme Court ruling on Oregon assisted suicide -- does the administration have any reaction to losing this one in the high court?
MR. McCLELLAN: Yes, I have expressed our disappointment. I know the Department of Justice is reviewing the decision. We are disappointed at the decision. The President remains fully committed to building a culture of life, a culture of life that is built on valuing life at all stages. And that's the President's commitment.
Tuesday, January 17, 2006
They Keep Slapping the Nine Eleven Monkey
But it's not the talisman they are seaking. We are not buying the 9/11 is a ticket to trample our rights bit any more. These folks have no shame: