The vote has exposed him to direct and implicit criticism from his chief presidential rivals, including Sen. Elizabeth Warren and former Mayor Pete Buttigieg, a military veteran, and especially Sen. Bernie Sanders, who voted against the war as a Vermont congressman and whose campaign has sharpened its criticism of Biden in recent days.
Now, three weeks before the Iowa caucuses — held in a state with a fierce anti-war streak — the issue threatens to be a campaign liability for Biden as he seeks to assure voters of his ability to handle a foreign crisis even as he works to distance himself from a war that has had enormous costs for his own family, and for the nation.
Joe has been defended by John Kerry. Mr I Was For It Before I Was Against It? John does realize he's a joke, right? He lost in 2004. He destroyed his own chances of running again in 2008 by making fun of US troops as people who couldn't go to college, we remember that right? I know I said the day he spoke to those students that he could kiss his chances at running for president goodbye. Now he's backing Joe Biden. John's just a loser. There's only so much a rich wife can do, John, and Teresa has done everything she can for you. Some day, you'll learn to stand on your own, right? The only reason for John Botox Kerry to stand next to Joe Biden is so that we can all notice just how many hair plugs Joe's had done since he was Vice President. Zach Linly (THE ROOT) calls out John's nonsense, "So basically, they weren’t voting to go to war, they were just voting to give the president all the authorization he needed to go to war; but, I mean, that’s different. Sure, John."
Sure, John. John is Jan Brady.
Meanwhile, Reed Richardson (MEDIAITE) notes:
On Sunday, Bernie Sanders’ campaign speechwriter released an archival, C-Span video from July 2003 showing then-Senator Joe Biden praising then-President George Bush as “popular” and a “bold leader” and pledging to support the Iraq War effort.
The video of Biden, taken at a Brookings Institute talk several months into the Iraq War, comes amid recent attempts by the Biden campaign to distance the candidate from his war support. Nearly a week ago, Biden, who sat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, characterized himself as an early skeptic of the war, saying he opposed it “from the very moment” it started. A CNN fact-check found Biden’s claim “highly misleading,” however, and, in fact, Biden walked back a very similar, false claim about his war stance that he made back in September.
The Sanders campaign has taken a much more aggressive approach toward Biden of late, having just released a public statement calling it “appalling that after 18 years Joe Biden still refuses to admit he was dead wrong on the Iraq War, the worst foreign policy blunder in modern American history.” David Sirota, the Sanders’ campaign aide who surfaced the C-Span and who is an aggressive online defender of his boss, attacked what he saw as a pattern of misleading statements by the Biden camp in his tweet publishing the video.
Brad Polumbo (WASHINGTON EXAMINER) observes, "The facts here are clear. The repeated attempt by Joe Biden and his surrogates to obfuscate them is deeply unethical, but it’s also revealing. They clearly know his foreign policy record can’t be defended on its merits."
In Iraq, another rocket attack. Qassem Abdul-Zahra (AP) reports:
Four members of Iraq's military were wounded Sunday in a rocket attack targeting an air base just north of Baghdad where American trainers were present until recently, Iraqi security officials said.
The attack by at least six rockets came just days after Iran fired ballistic missiles at two bases in Iraq that house U.S. forces, causing no casualties.
AFP and REUTERS note:
The Al-Balad base had held a small US Air Force contingent as well as American contractors, but most were evacuated following a sharp rise in friction between the US and Iran over the past two weeks, military sources said.
Al-Balad is the main airbase for Iraq's F-16s, which it bought from the US.
Also in Iraq today, a press conference was cancelled when journalists boycotted it.
now The press conference of the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Interior & Basra police chief was canceled due to province’s journalists ’boycott of security conferences due to the security failure and the martyrdom of journalists Ahmed Abdul Samad & Safaa Ghali #lraq
now The press conference of the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Interior & Basra police chief was canceled due to province’s journalists ’boycott of security conferences due to the security failure and the martyrdom of journalists Ahmed Abdul Samad & Safaa Ghali #Insm_iq
Iraqis journalists Ahmed Abdul Samad and Safaa Ghali were assassinated on Friday. We've noted the deaths in:
Mohammed Rwanduzy (RUDAW) reports:
Iraq’s interior minister has ordered an investigation into the killing of two Iraqi journalists covering anti-government protests on Friday, while an Iraqi media watchdog has said 2019 saw “unprecedented” media repression due to protest coverage.
Minister of Interior al-Yasseri “directed the dispatch of a high-level team headed by the Ministry’s undersecretary for police affairs and a number of officers” to investigate the killing of journalists Ahmed Abdul Samad and his cameraman Safaa al-Ghali, a Sunday ministry statement read.
The Minister “ordered that the team not return until the completion of investigations and the uncovering of the perpetrators.”
And Arwa Ibrahim & Azhar Al-Rubaie (ALJAZEERA) add:
In a show of solidarity with Abdelsamad and Ghali, a group of journalists in Baghdad on Saturday held a vigil near the Iraqi Journalists Syndicate building to mourn the death of the two reporters.
"We are here in solidarity with our colleagues Safaa and Ahmed and to express our sincere condolences and rejection of what has happened to them," said Laith Natiq.
"We condemn the violation of press freedoms in Iraq and the way [armed groups] are trying to keep us silent," he said,
Natiq said although it was unclear who was behind the killings, he suspected they were groups who want to keep the journalists silent.
The following sites updated: