Today on Blogcritics
Home » Ohio GOP Owes Apology to Democrat Paul Hackett and the Troops

Ohio GOP Owes Apology to Democrat Paul Hackett and the Troops

In the race tomorrow for a Congressional seat in Ohio’s conservative 2nd district, tough-talking Democrat Paul Hackett is not backing down from his harsh rhetoric toward George Bush regarding the Iraq war. Now the GOP has released a statement purporting to want to “bury” the Democratic Iraq War veteran. Certainly this must be making Republicans cringe behind the scenes.

Paul Hackett doesn’t fit conventional political profiles. He is a Marine Reservist and an Iraq war veteran who opposed the war before the U.S. invasion and remains a harsh critic of President Bush’s policy there. He is also a Democrat battling to win a special House election in Ohio in a district that has been in Republican hands for more than three decades.

On Tuesday, voters in Ohio’s 2nd Congressional District will elect a successor to former representative Rob Portman, who quit Congress to become U.S. trade representative. Hackett hopes to beat the long odds by defeating Republican nominee Jean Schmidt, a former state representative, by stressing his military service and independence

Hackett told USA Today that Bush’s taunting line, “Bring em on!” was “the most incredibly stupid comment I’ve ever heard a President of the United States make.” He also told the newspaper that, while he was willing to put his life on the line for the President, “I’ve said that I don’t like the son-of-a-[expletive] that lives in the White House.”

Both the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and the National Republican Congressional Committee have bought TV time for commercials over the weekend. “He called the commander in chief a son-of-a-[expletive],” said NRCC spokesman Carl Forti. “We decided to bury him.

Hackett, hoping to capitalize on the widespread disarray in the scandal-plagued Ohio GOP, remains unapologetic about his characterization of the President. “I said it. I meant it. I stand by it,” he said in a phone interview. “In this district, we need more straight-talking, straight-shooting politicians.”

The Republican party, however, chose an entirely inappropriate term to throw at its opponent. At a time of war when the troops, both liberal and conservative, are laying down their lives, couldn’t the Republican party think of a more appropriate adjective than “bury” to reference a man vying to become the only Iraq war veteran in Congress.

For the troops to hear that one of their own is going to be “buried” by the Republican Party sends a message that not only are the troops unimportant to the GOP in the midst of a political campaign, but also that they will be attacked and smeared in the name of politics if their beliefs do not happen to conform to Republican talking points. How can this behavior be made to conform to the mission we have given to the troops, which is to promote a democracy that can tolerate the viewpoints of diverse and different peoples? The troops, Paul Hackett, and the whole country deserve an apology for the irresponsible rhetoric.

About Balletshooz

  • Bruce

    Eric. You bet I believe it! If you would open your eyes and ears a little, you would too!

    I first read the manifesto over 40 years ago. The scary part is that today’s left wing dem’s don’t even paraphrase Mr. Marx, they quote him word for word. Don’t believe me? Go read it.


  • John Bambenek

    Okay, on behalf of the GOP, I would like to apologize to Hackett for beating him back to political irrelevancy.

  • Eric Berlin

    John: Paul Hackett is now a star on the rise.

    And he’s given hope and energy to the Democratic Party.

    So… no need to apologize.

  • Dave Nalle

    Does anyone else find Eric’s last statement just a little pathetic?


  • Eric Berlin

    You find it pathetic because you want to find it pathetic, Dave.

    But it’s not. In 15 months, we’ll see what’s what.

  • Jeff Davidson

    yeah, major “beat back” there John. Schmidt squeaked by in what should have been a landslide win in that district.

    I love it when people support the troops as long as those troops don’t speak their mind.

  • Dave Nalle

    Let’s try to apply some thought here.

    Schmidt had to run against Hackett and his personal charm and military background.

    Hackett had the easy job of essentially running against Bush and ignoring Schmidt.

    Hackett still lost.

    Now consider – how many Hacketts do the Democrats have to run? How many people who basically don’t agree with will they even be allowed to run?

    Remember, in 2008 and to some degree 2006 just running against Bush isn’t going to cut it, they’re going to have to run against the entire GOP, which offers a great deal of diversity.

    In addition, the Democrats still face the fundamental problem that when they explain their platform they are basically saying “we’re offering all the problems of the current administration PLUS higher taxes, more spending and less freedom.” That’s a hard, hard sell.


  • Eric Berlin

    You can’t have it both ways with Hackett. Either he’s “charming” or he’s “offensive” for calling Bush an SOB, etc.

    Onward: Hackett is offering a new model for Democrats to run on as he’s exposed vulnerability on the administration’s anti-war policies. This should be a no brainer, in my opinion, but there it is.

    The fact that ANY Democrat ran so well in this district is a big warning sign to Republicans.

    Finally, Dave, your point about taxes, spending, and freedom (and is tired, misleading, and out-of-date.

  • Dave Nalle

    >>You can’t have it both ways with Hackett. Either he’s “charming” or he’s “offensive” for calling Bush an SOB, etc.< <

    I never tried to have it both ways. Fine with me if he calls Bush an SOB. It's even part of his charm.

    >>Onward: Hackett is offering a new model for Democrats to run on as he’s exposed vulnerability on the administration’s anti-war policies. This should be a no brainer, in my opinion, but there it is. < <

    This shouldn't have been a revelation to anyone. Plenty of Democrats are going to run against the war and lose because their GOP opponents will keep the race focused on their record rather than the president's.

    >>Finally, Dave, your point about taxes, spending, and freedom (and is tired, misleading, and out-of-date.<<

    Hardly out of date. Democrat positions have become even more socialistic and unacceptable as they’ve become more marginalized as a party.


  • Mark Saleski


    you all act as though the results of the last election were 95-5, when it was actually not far from 50-50.

  • Scott

    Nalle’s voting for Bill Frist in ’08.

  • billy

    this republican denial that their party is hollowed out, even in the reddest district like 0h-2, will only help democrats. please keep believing everything is ok going into 2006 and that howard dean is a disaster.

  • Eric Berlin

    I’m encourated for ’06 (even if that makes me “pathetic”). I think people are finally (!) ready for some real change and reform.

  • Dave Nalle

    I agree with you on the change and reform, Eric.

    It’s time for us to put aside the failed politics of callousness and greed and move in a new direction. If they get their act together the GOP might be able to offer that new hope. The Democrats never will. If necessary we can look elsewhere alltogether.

    BTW, I wouldn’t vote for Bill Frist if he were the last candidate on earth.


  • Scott

    Well, whether conservatives like it or not, I think this bodes well for Democrats in the 2006 elections.

  • John Bambenek

    As I said in another thread, this race showed that in order to compete, the Democrats have to pretend to be Republicans… if that’s your definition of boding well… that’s your perogative.

  • rush limbaugh

    Bend way over for your apology.

  • billy

    “pretend to be Republicans”

    keep dreaming that is the reason republicans have become weak in red districts.

    he called bush an sob, opposed iraq, pro-choice, pro stem-cell. if you call that acting like a republican, you are in for a surprise next year.

  • Dave Nalle

    It does sound like my kind of Republican, Billy.


  • billy

    maybe thats why he did good, but it isnt Jon B’s type of republican so I dont know why he is claiming that. anyways, your kind of republican dave, is apparently . . . a democrat.

    i can only think of 1 position that hackett had that could even be remotely called republican, which was 2nd amendment, but in that respect hackett was a howard dean clone.

  • Dave Nalle

    Hackett didn’t come out as a big spender or a tax raiser as far as I can tell. So that sets him apart from a lot of other Dems, as well as the gun position.


  • John Bambenek

    On his website, on his flyers, and in his commercials, no where can it be seen where he really stands on issues or that he’s even a Democrat.

    He ran as a Marine, that got votes. It was a good strategy. It didn’t work.

  • Eric Berlin

    He ran as an anti-war, anti-Bush, pro-health care and education reform Democrat. He’s also pro-gun ownership.

    That sounds like a decent platform to me.

  • Dave Nalle

    So long as it’s pro healthcare reform and pro education reform, it doesn’t sound like a democrat at all. If it’s pro national health and pro more money for failing education institutions. THEN it sounds like a democrat.


  • Eric Berlin

    If it’s tax breaks for pharm companies and do nothing for the millions of un and under-insured, then it sounds like ANOTHER party…

  • Dave Nalle

    That sounds like BOTH parties, Eric.


  • Eric Berlin

    If you take your last two comments, you’re saying that Democrats both want to nationalize health care and do nothing for the uninsured.


  • Scott

    “On his website, on his flyers, and in his commercials, no where can it be seen where he really stands on issues or that he’s even a Democrat.”

    Not to rain on your parade here Johnny, but most commercials, websites and flyers of any candidate don’t usually list their party. Go to most any website of a member of the Senate or the House. You usually won’t find party affiliation on the front page. And in most political commercials, they don’t mention their party affiliation until the end of the ad where they’re legally required to.

    Look, I know you’re scared about 2006 and that’s why you feel compelled to make things up, but you can always come over to the good side of the force. It’s never too late. Look at Darth Vader, he switched right before he died.

  • John Bambenek

    You nailed the issue right on, I *am* scared about 06. I know full well when the Dems lose more seats in the Senate and lose again in the House, we’re all screwed. Why?

    It’s not policy, it’s corruption. I’m honest, I know that the GOP are politicians first, and a distant second men of priniciple. They’ll be looting the treasury just like the Dems do in Illinois. Conservativism? Hah. The GOP is just as corrupt and the DNC, except occasionally they throw us a bone.

    In the end, when the DNC gets wiped out, the GOP will become just as useless. So yeah, I’m afraid.

  • Robert

    Dave, You want people to live on $7 an hour and have no affordable education and healthcare. Watch and see what happens when those people find a leader that is not adverse to violence. But hey, you’ll have em in prison camps before it gets to that, right Dave? You and your kind care nothing for your fellow man, only your bank accounts. Your not going to be able to eat that money when the time comes, Dave. Oh yea I forgot, the Churches are gonna make everything better, right Dave? Please go away.

  • John Bambenek

    Note, the Democrats ran this country for 40 years, they had their chance, and they delivered nothing.

  • billy

    except of course equal rights, social secutriy, desegragation, america rising to a superpower, winning wwii, right to choose, going into space, voting rights act, . . .

    of course this is nothing if you are a conservative because these are the things you would like to get rid of.

  • jayne

    History DOES repeat itself………

    “A little patience, and we shall see the reign of witches pass over, their spells dissolve, and the people, recovering their true sight, restore their government to its true principles. It is true that in the meantime we are suffering deeply in spirit, and incurring the horrors of a war and long oppressions of enormous public debt …
    If the game runs sometimes against us at home we must have patience till luck turns, and then we shall have an opportunity of winning back the principles we have lost, for this is a game where principles are at stake.”

    Written in a letter by Thomas Jefferson after the passage of the Sedition Act in 1798
    “To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.”

    Quoted in 1918, by REPUBLICAN President Theodore Roosevelt…what would Teddy say now?
    “Naturally, the common people don’t want war, but they can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders.
    Tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacificists for lack of patriotism and endangering the country.
    It works the same in every country.”

    Herman Goering
    Hitler’s Reichsmarschall
    at the Neuremberg Trials