When Tim speaks to the president tomorrow on Meet the Press, I'm afraid most of our expectations are running a little low. Even moderates have noticed that Tim often rolls out the red carpet without any followup to Bush and Company while everyone else gets the brass knuckles treatment.
But here are some questions I would like to see asked and pursued until a satisfactory answer is proffered:
- 1. Mr. Bush, you've given many reasons for going to war with Iraq, but all the original ones were the threats offered by a country with WMD. Now it appears they do not have any. How can you keep justifying the war despite this?
2. If the point was indeed to liberate Iraq, why are you siding with measures that remove equal status privileges for women there? And why does liberation mean they can vote for anything but an Islamic state?
3. Don't you think it's time to admit that the jobs aren't going to comeback with your current manner of handling the issue? And what will you do to change that?
4. How can the American people trust your fiscal policies when you think that giving huge tax cuts coupled with increased spending will eliminate the deficit? Why are so many organizations throughout the world so concerned about US fiscal policy and saying it's having a global negative impact?
5. You recently said that no president has done more for human rights than you have. Could you give us five examples where you've done more than FDR, than Abraham Lincoln, than anyone else?
6. If the point of "No Child Left Behind" is really to improve the educational opportunities for children, why are so many teachers and schools being left behind in their ability to provide education under the NCLB act?
7. You state that you're a compassionate conservative, someone who believes that we should minimize the impact of government on American lives, and to treat all people with love. But your pronouncements siding against a woman's right to choose, to institute a change to the Constitution to prevent gays from marrying, and the way you've created laws to make people live under the constant thumb and spycam of big government seems to belie your statements. Can you explain?
8. You applaud military people regularly, yet you and the GOP have worked hard to reduce benefits for the military and for veterans of past wars. Our soldiers routinely stand in harm's way short on rations, without body armor, and aren't allowed to come home when their tour of duty is over. Can you explain why your words say one thing and your actions quite another?
9. It's interesting to note, Mr. Bush, that while you enjoyed the flight suit and the photo op on the USS Abraham Lincoln and despise those asking questions about your military record, that you have yet to produce one piece of declarative proof that you served your full time in the national guard. Why is that? And would you show us declarative proof today? As the president, you can surely obtain it if desired.
10. Related to this, if another war was declared tomorrow, Mr. Bush, and the objective was a final push against terrorism, would you ask your daughters to serve? Would you ask your brothers' children to serve? If no, why not? Why should other people's children make the ultimate sacrifice but not yours?
11. Without mentioning the war on terrorism or alluding to it even once, give us five distinct reasons the American public should vote for you in November?
12. If Election 2000 were to reoccur, would you stop the vote counting again and bring the matter back to the Supreme Court to decide?