Monday, October 18, 2004
CNN coverage of today's Al Gore speech, sponsored by MoveOn. (We'll give you a link to the full speech as soon as we track one down.)
Al Gore on Monday accused President Bush of intentionally deceiving the public about the reasons for invading Iraq and said he is so ideologically driven that he refuses to admit -- or even learn from -- his mistakes.UPDATE: The speech is up at C-SPAN in RealVideo format.
"It is beyond incompetence -- it is recklessness that risks the safety and security of the American people," the former vice president said during a speech at Georgetown University.
Gore, the Democratic presidential nominee in 2000 and loser of that bitterly contested election, complained that Bush's refusal to budge from "a rigid, right-wing ideology" has led him to forbid any dissent and ignore warnings that may conflict with his assumptions about Iraq, tax cuts and other policy issues.
"He is arrogantly out of touch with reality," Gore said. "He refuses to ever admit mistakes. Which means that so long as he is our president, we are doomed to repeat them" . . . .
Worst of all, Gore said, was that Bush and his Cabinet purposely created the false impression that Saddam Hussein was linked to the al-Qaida terrorist network and that the Iraqi leader was somehow to blame for the September 11, 2001, attacks -- a notion that 70 percent of the public once believed, according to polls.
"This was not an unfortunate misreading of the available evidence, causing a mistaken linkage between Iraq and al-Qaida," Gore said. "This was something else -- a willful choice to make a specific linkage whether evidence existed or not."