As a member of the House in 2002, Portman, then a Republican congressman from Cincinnati, directly faced one of those challenges when he joined 295 other lawmakers in authorizing President George W. Bush to invade Iraq, topple Saddam Hussein and rid the country of its suspected weapons of mass destruction. […]
When asked whether he chose rightly, Portman replied: “When I’ve been asked that question, I’ve always said, ‘We’ll see.’ Now we’re getting close to the answer to that question. Are we going to have a stable Iraq that will be an ally in the war against terrorism or a safe haven for terrorists. I am cautiously optimistic we are heading in the (right) direction.”
Two things jump out — first, the Daily News put this bit before their explanation of Portman’s views on Afghanistan. What gives? Last I checked, Afghanistan was the war in the news these days. Besides that, and despite Portman’s hawkishness on Afghanistan (he thinks Obama was absolutely, positively, undeniably wrong to set a timetable), when was the last time you heard a GOP candidate evince “cautious optimism” about Iraq? Ever since the Surge, the GOP has been gleefully hanging liberal defeatism around the necks of every Democrat in sight.