Though neither George Bush nor John Kerry can be said be to silver-tongued, Mr. Bush, at least, has something to say. He does not falter in the things he believes. John Kerry on the other hand does little else than falter.
(As more Kerryisms inevitably become available I will update this list and bring it to the top of my blog. If you have a favorite that you want me to post leave a comment and I’ll add it to the list.)
New Kerryism for today:
New York Times
''It accelerated -- '' He paused. ''I mean, it didn't change me much at all. It just sort of accelerated, confirmed in me, the urgency of doing the things I thought we needed to be doing. I mean, to me, it wasn't as transformational as it was a kind of anger, a frustration and an urgency that we weren't doing the kinds of things necessary to prevent it and to deal with it.''
Endeavoring to explain his "global test" remarks in the first presidential debate:
The Washington Times
The test I was talking about is a test of legitimacy — not just in the globe, but elsewhere. - John Kerry
New York Times
Hypothetical questions are not real. - John Kerry
Peter Jennings: You told an Iowa newspaper recently that life begins at conception. What makes you think that?
Sen. Kerry: My personal belief about what happens in the fertilization process is a human being is first formed and created, and that's when life begins. Something begins to happen. There's a transformation. There's an evolution. Within weeks, you look and see the development of it, but that's not a person yet, and it's certainly not what somebody, in my judgment, ought to have the government of the United States intervening in. - John Kerry
Jennings: Could you explain again to me what do you mean when you say "life begins at conception"?And:
Kerry: Well, that's what the Supreme Court has established is a test of viability as to whether or not you're permitted to terminate a pregnancy, and I support that. That is my test. And I, you know, you have all kinds of different evolutions of life, as we know, and very different beliefs about birth, the process of the development of a fetus. That's the standard that's been established in Roe v. Wade. And I adhere to that standard.
Jennings: If you believe that life begins at conception, is even a first-trimester abortion not murder?
Kerry: No, because it's not the form of life that takes personhood in the terms that we have judged it to be in the past. It's the beginning of life. Does life begin? Yes, it begins.
Is it at the point where I would say that you apply those penalties? The answer is, no, and I believe in choice. I believe in the right to choose, and the government should not involve itself in that choice, beyond where it has in the context of Roe v. Wade.
I could run a long list of clear misleading, clear exaggeration. The linkage to Al Qaida, number four. That said, they are really misleading all of America, Tom, in a profound way. The war on terror is less -- it is occasionally military, and it will be, and it will continue to be for a long time. - John Kerry
Boston Fog Machine
There is not a right or wrong here. There was a correctness in the president’s judgment about timing. But that does not mean there was an incorrectness in the judgment other people made about timing.
For you see, Kerry continued, “Again and again and again in the debate, it was made clear that the vote of the U.S. Senate and the House on the authorization of immediate use of force on Jan. 12 was not a vote as to whether or not force should be used. - John Kerry
It is important to remember that this resolution does not authorize the use of American ground troops in Bosnia, nor does it specifically authorize the use of air or naval power. It simply associates the U.S. Senate with the current policies of this administration and of the Security Council. – John Kerry
The Washington Post
And you've got companies like Wal-Mart that are stripping underneath them, that hire part-time people, that have actually advertised to come and work, so they won't do their health care. - John Kerry
The Washington Post
"This president always makes decisions late after things have happened that could have been different had the president made a different decision earlier." - John Kerry
"(I)f you have a breach that, by everybody's standard, at least in the United States, those of us in the House and Senate, and the president, join together and make a judgment, this is indeed a material breach, and then others -- some of them can't be persuaded -- if we have evidence, sufficient to show the materiality of the breach, we should be able to do what Adlai Stevenson did on behalf of the administration, Kennedy administration, and sit in front of the Security Council and say, 'Here is the evidence. It's time for all of you to put up. We need to all do this together.' And that's what I think the resolution that was passed suggests." - John Kerry
New York Times
"I actually did vote for the $87 billion before I voted against it." - John Kerry
(via doubleplusgood infotainment)
No, wait, wait, wait, wait you asked me if I'd met with any leaders. Yes. I have had conversations with leaders, yes, recently. That's not your business, it's mine. I've met with foreign leaders for any (inaudible) purpose - I never said that. What I said was that I have heard from people who are leaders elsewhere in the world who don't appreciate the Bush administration approach and would love to see a change in the leadership of the United States. I'm talking our allies, I'm talking about people who were our friends nine months ago, I'm talking about people who ought to be at our side in Iraq and aren't because this administration has pushed them away in its arrogance, that's what I'm talking about. Are you a registered Republican? Are you a Republican? You answer the question. That's not an answer. Did you vote for George Bush? Did you vote for George Bush? Thank you. - John Kerry
The Boston Globe
"This isn't going to be some kind of, you know, we're-like-them-they're-like-us-wishy-washy-mealy-mouth-you-can't-tell-the-difference deal. This is going to be something where we're giving America a real choice." - John Kerry
TIME Magazine: Interview: John Kerry
TIME: What would you have done about Iraq had you been the President?
KERRY: If I had been the President, I might have gone to war but not the way the President did. It might have been only because we had exhausted the remedies of inspections, only because we had to—because it was the only way to enforce the disarmament. ...
TIME: So, if we don't find WMD, the war wasn't worth the costs? That's a yes?
KERRY: No, I think you can still—wait, no. You can't—that's not a fair question, and I'll tell you why. You can wind up successful in transforming Iraq and changing the dynamics, and that may make it worth it, but that doesn't mean [transforming Iraq] was the cause [that provided the] legitimacy to go. You have to have that distinction. ...
TIME: You've criticized the pre-emptive nature of the Bush doctrine.
KERRY: Let me emphasize: I'll pre-empt where necessary. We are always entitled to do that under the Charter of the U.N., which gives the right of self-defense of a nation. We've always had a doctrine of pre-emption contained in first strike throughout the cold war. So I understand that. It's the extension of it by the Bush Administration to remove a person they don't like that contravenes that.
New York Post
"I voted for what I thought was best for the country. Did I expect Howard Dean to go off to the left and say, 'I'm against everything'? Sure. Did I expect George Bush to f - - - it up as badly as he did?" - John Kerry
New York Post
"I left some blood on a battlefield that President Bush never left anywhere." - John Kerry
The Boston Globe
Those weren't precisely my words, they were the words of a press release sent out. - John Kerry
If we hadn't voted the way we voted, we would not have been able to have a chance of going to the United Nations and stopping the president, in effect, who already had the votes and who was obviously asking serious questions about whether or not the Congress was going to be there to enforce the effort to create a threat. - John Kerry
Well, ahh, huh, it's interesting to hear that, when they shut the newspaper that belongs to a legitimate voice in Iraq, and, well, let me change the term legitimate --when they shut a newspaper that belongs to a voice, because he has clearly taken on a far more radical tone in recent days, and aligned himself with both Hamas and Hezbollah, which is a sort of terrorist alignment, so it creates its own set of needs in order to deal with the possible future spread of terrorism. But at the same time, if its unaccompanied by a broader set of moves to try and broaden our own base in Iraq, um, I just think it asks for great difficulties. - John Kerry
Yahoo! News - Civil Rights Group Seeks Kerry Apology
"President Clinton was often known as the first black president. I wouldn't be upset if I could earn the right to be the second." - John Kerry
"I don't own an SUV,'' said Kerry, who supports increasing existing fuel economy standards to 36 miles per gallon by 2015 in order to reduce the nation's dependence on foreign oil supplies.
Kerry thought for a second when asked whether his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, had a Suburban at their Ketchum, Idaho, home. Kerry said he owns and drives a Dodge 600 and recently bought a Chrysler 300M. He said his wife owns the Chevrolet SUV.
"The family has it. I don't have it,'' he said. - John Kerry
Vic Gold brings into a new category of Kerryisms - possible future Kerryisms - with this from the Washingtonian.
In September John Kerry, out to answer critics who say his speeches are long-winded and rambling, goes to Independence, Missouri, to bask in the legacy of President Harry Truman. He promises that “in my White House, let me assure you, the buck, which is to say the president’s ultimate responsibility for administrative action, will definitely end at the desk of the chief executive.”
On to the American Legion convention where, invoking the memory of John F. Kennedy, Kerry tells veterans: “Ask not what your country can do for you, either as an individual or a corporation, but what you can do for your country, which isn’t to suggest that just because my opponent hasn’t won a Silver Star in combat, as some of us have, he isn’t qualified to be president.”
And finally to Boston in October, where FDR-like he says, “This generation of Americans has a rendezvous with destiny”—only to deny ever saying it after Rush Limbaugh attacks him for having used a French word.