On May 1, we ran an entry about how George Voinovich likes to criticize Bush but when the chips are down, he is going to back the President. We argued then that one reason why he does this is so he will appear to be a "moderate" Republican. His so-called "moderation" serves him well with the media, as can be seen in this column in Sunday's Columbus Dispatch.
Joe Hallett reveals how Voinovich visited Colin Powell about two weeks ago to urge him to run for President in 2008. Apparently Voinovich believes that handing the American government over to a man who appeared in the United Nations and talked about non-existent weapons of mass destruction will somehow restore America's credibility with the world.
Hallett goes on to say "We all got conned -- everybody," Voinovich said, not blaming Powell or anyone else in particular, but lamenting that the right questions were not asked of the right people in the run-up to war."
Of course, "everybody" didn't get "conned". Sherrod Brown didn't. Dennis Kucinich didn't. A lot of commentators didn't. The "everybody" that Voinovich is referring to does include a lot of Democrats, but to try and pass this disaster off as something that was unforeseen is wrong, and more than wrong. it is dishonest.
Here's why Republicans like Voinovich want to claim that "everybody" got "conned." If everybody was wrong then Republicans can't be fairly blamed for getting us in a war that didn't do one thing to advance American security and has done so much to undermine American security. Claiming "everybody" was wrong is a way of making sure that in 2008, and beyond, Americans don't just blame the Grand Old Party for this Great Big Mess.
The real question isn't why Voinovich is claiming that "everybody" was wrong. The real question is whether the media will let him and other Republicans get away with it. One reason why the "right" questions weren't asked by the "right" people is that the Republicans controlled the Congress and weren't about to let anyone question Bubble-Boy's rationale for taking us into war in Iraq.
Democrats have to be vigilant in making sure that variations of "everybody got conned" don't go unchallenged in 2008. The media, which was complicit in the run up to the Iraqi War, and the Republicans, who wanted this war, each have a vested interest in pushing this narrative. Democrats have a vested interest in making sure this narrative doesn't go unchallenged.