The Trail: A Daily Diary of Campaign 2008


Joe Biden

New Biden Ad Pushes His Iraq Plan

In a new 30-second campaign spot, which began broadcasting in Iowa today, Biden (D-Del.) describes a trip home from Iraq aboard a C-130 military flight that was also bringing home a flag-draped coffin. "All I could think of was the parents waiting at the other end," he said. "We must end this war, in a way that doesn't require us to send their grandchild back."

The ad was played during today's Democratic debate in Des Moines, and other Democrats took issue with its contention that only Biden has a plan to get U.S. troops out of Iraq and keep them out. However, several candidates backed the basics of his withdrawal plan.

-- Anne E. Kornblut

Posted at 12:10 PM ET on Aug 19, 2007  | Category:  Joe Biden
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That sounded like Neil Kinnock to me. That Joe (Neil?) sounds so good tells one a lot about his rivals: Ankleless Annie, the Cornpone Narcissus, B.O., the Senator from Castro (bloviating about the economy today on CNBC), Dennis the Menace ("Him Again"), the Big Wind from Alaska and Gov. Laundry List.

Posted by: philip_riggio | August 20, 2007 12:54 PM

Far too many of those who post and advocate for real reform, like jimarush above, are practicing the Rove political theory of playing to your most extreme base and hope for the best. I hope that my fellow Democrats don't fall for the same strategy that is killing the Republican Party. If we have fewer and fewer moderates, with thoughtful and principled differences of opinions on a few issues, the Democrats are opening up an opportunity for a third party to appeal to the vast majority of Americans who will not be cowered into an ideological liberal or conservative purity. This is exactly the kind of polarizing politics that millions of Americans wants changed. jimarush, eco-pharm, and DCSage should be ashamed of practicing the kind of hate filled politics that Rove engineered.

I prefer Biden, but will be happy with Clinton as well. If Clinton were to win the nomination, and it looks like she might despite Biden being better positioned than any Democratic candidate to win the white house, I hope she reaches out Biden/Dodd/Levin/Reed and the many other moderates and progressives who refuse to practice the shameful politics of Obama/Palosi/Reid/Durbin that is alienating far too many from the Democratic Party and advancing their agenda.

Posted by: clawrence35 | August 20, 2007 11:40 AM

I would say that Joe Biden took a dumb pill but I think that is giving him to much credit for previous intelligence. Biden and Lieberman should join together and form an old farts go to Iraq and fight the war with the youngsters who are dying club. Biden is a pitiful excuse for a senator and will be a sorry president. Joe, read my lips "we want out of Iraq now" not later not after things have been sorted out, now! This war was fabricated on lies it should be terminated by the truth. What is the truth you ask? The truth is the majority of Americans disapproved of this war before we invaded, once we invaded and since we invaded Iraq. We orchestrated the hanging of a sovereign countries leader. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have been killed, injured and displaced. Millions of Iraqis are impoverished and without basic utilities. Why you might ask has this happened? Because a fanatic who has no concept of democracy and is not gifted with intelligence decided to spread his concept of democracy by force. Biden, Lieberman, Kristol and many others place the security of a Middle East country above the safety and security of America and they should be dismissed without an afterthought. END THE REPUBLICAN WAR IN IRAQ.

Posted by: jimarush | August 20, 2007 7:51 AM

With all the media hype about the "troika" at the top of the polls for the Democratic nomination, we are being ill served. Most of us want out of Iraq, but the positions presented in Iowa yesterday could not have been more different nor more clear.

Governor Richardson would have us cut and run with consequences that would have to be addressed for generations to come. Contrast this with Senator Biden's careful analysis and rational plan not only to get our troops and contractors home, but offer a measure of hope in the region.

We as voters had better start looking past the press "fluff" and media stardom and use some cold, hard analysis on just who would make the best President.

Using yesterday's forum in Des Moines, it's clear that Senator Biden stands heads above the rest of the field in wise judgement, sound policy and hope for the future. Forget the polls folks and vote for the candidate who has the knowledge, basckground and experience. At this stage in the campaign, that candidate is, again, Senator Joe Biden.

Posted by: travelgallery | August 20, 2007 6:44 AM

I agree that the earlier comment posting
that Americans piecing together other countries, as if we can as if it was a puzzle board game, is absurd.

However, most of what is the present day Middle east or Muslim world that was once the Ottoman Empire has already been cut and sliced by western countries, with the League of Nations granting Great Britain and France the task after that empire crumbled.

Present day Iraq was not what it is today. It took a police state under Saddam to keep three very differ groups apart.
They all want something different.
The Shiite majority will not settle for anything less than less than religious rule, as in Iran.

One of the biggest mistakes of the British and French was not give a formal borders to Kurdistan.

Posted by: billyboykm | August 20, 2007 5:06 AM

Yesterday in Iowa we saw how the Democrats could lose in November 08.

Clinton, Obama, Edwards and Biden aren't confident enough in their judgment and trust the will of the American people to order a complete withdrawal from Iraq. They'll keep forces in Iraq for years to come.

What difference will there be on the most important issue of the campaign between the Democratic and Republican Presidential nominees?

The path out of Iraq for Clinton, Biden, Obama and Edwards will be a long march spread over years. That will be true as well with any Republican Presidential nominee. No Republican will advocate an endless commitment to Iraq. All will be critical to a degree of how Bush has waged the war.

I am supporting Richardson in part because he has the best plan for leaving Iraq. William M. Arkin who writes on National and Homeland Security for the Washington Post recently commented:

"It is on Iraq though, that Richardson really shines. "I believe that we need to withdraw all of our troops within six months," he writes. "Other than the customary Marine contingent at the embassy, I would not leave anyone behind. And if the embassy isn't safe, they're coming home too. No airbases. No troops in the Green Zone. No embedded soldiers training Iraqi forces, because we know what that means. It means our troops would still be out on patrol -- with targets on their backs."

We are spending $10 billion a month on Iraq, Richardson says. "Of the many ways in which Mr. Bush's ill-conceived war has distracted us from our real national security needs, this is the most dangerous," he concludes. "There is not a single sign that Iraq is improving. To the contrary, every indication is that it's getting worse, and a smaller force will do nothing to change that."

And so Bill Richardson says something that the other candidates evidently can't or won't: "A regional crisis is worthy of military intervention. A true threat to our country's security is worthy of war. But a struggle between a country's warring factions, where both sides hate the United States, is not worthy of one more lost American life.""

Posted by: shcassidy | August 20, 2007 3:29 AM

With the complexities of the foreign policy challenges that we face, coupled with the sorry state of the military that the next president will inherit, requires the kind of leadership and judgment that Senator Biden has delivered for over thirty years. It is because of this mans efforts that fewer ethnic Albanians and Bosnians paid with their lives only because they belonged to an ethnic minority. He is the only candidate who has shown the courage and outrage to call for American troops to help stop genocide in Darfur. And he is the only candidate in either party who has a thoughtful plan that levels with the American people on the difficult strategy choices we need to make in Iraq prior to this escalating into a regional war.

As a veteran who served in Bosnia, Kosovo, and then in Iraq, and as a Democrat, I whole heartedly support Senator Biden, and thank him for his efforts to provide funding for mine resistant vehicles, release a detailed plan on Iraq, passing landmark legislation to assist and prevent women becoming victims of crime, and putting the lives of soldiers ahead of politics. I am proud to have at least one leader in the party who recognizes the complexity of our standing in the world today, and how desperately this country needs real leadership to step up to the task ahead of us.

If the Democrats truly wanted to beat the Republicans, Senator Biden is the best positioned candidate to take back the executive branch and possess the experience and sound judgment needed in the next president.

Posted by: clawrence35 | August 20, 2007 2:33 AM

"Biden's plan to partition Irak is idiotic."
speaking of idiotic it's "Iraq". Second, the first partition of Arabia, was done by Winston Churchill. Three separate countries would be easier to manage. Two of them would be our allies! That's what the people of IRAQ want anyway. It was bushe boy that insisted to keep it one country. So Democracy isn't allowed there either?

JOE BIDEN FOR PRESIDENT! he is the best choice.

Posted by: Froward69 | August 20, 2007 12:41 AM

Joe Biden is a cull. He should have been knocked in the head when he was a pup.
This unAmerican enemy of freedom & democracy would just continue Bush's war of tyranny.
Get ALL these CFR puppets out of Washington and replace them with Patriotic Americans.

Posted by: eco-pharm | August 20, 2007 12:20 AM

Well if you folks are so smart, what the hell are we going to do in Iraq? Get out immediately? Allow a failed state in the heart of the Middle East?

The problem is, even though Iraq did not attack us, leaving Iraq to become a haven for terrorists will ultimately make America less safe.

Just like Gen. Powell said, it's the Pottery Barn Rule -- "you break it, you bought it." So for better or for worse, we own Iraq, and we need to figure out some way to make it relatively stable -- or at least not a terrorist haven -- before we completely withdraw.

Sen. Biden is the only presidential candidate who actually has a plan to do this.

Posted by: flynnb | August 20, 2007 12:03 AM

Biden's plan to partition Irak is idiotic.

See here for more details:

Posted by: TeddySanFran | August 19, 2007 9:55 PM

Spare me the bumf about Joe Biden's foreign policy expertise. He voted for the Iraq debacle - enough said.

There is something sick and wrong about a presidential candidate talking about divvying up other people's countries in campaign ads.

It's not Joe Biden that's sick and wrong though. It's America.

I find the idea of American voters deciding the future of Iraq very disquieting...since the average US voter can't even locate Iraq on a map of the Middle East.

Posted by: kevrobb | August 19, 2007 9:06 PM

Joe Biden's plan to parcel up Iraq will guarantee an unending US presence, an extension of neo-con rank stupidity, and more bumbling from the same people who brought us this debacle in the first place. Iraq is not ourd to parcel up. Iraq is not ours to occupy. Iraqis are the ones killing and maiming our armed forces despit the silly propaganda about "foreign forces".

It will take courage to pack up our forces and get them out of harm's way in Iraq because any President doing this will have to stand up to the right-wingers and the powerful AIPAC lobby for a foreign government. Right wing blather equating ending the effort to occupy Iraq with cutting and running from something is just plain nonsense and should be dealt with as such.

Posted by: DCSage | August 19, 2007 8:04 PM

Senator Joseph Biden is the true star in the Democratic Party... his total mastery of foreign policy, many decades of experience coupled with a measured approach to this quaqmire is the United States best chance to end this war and bring our troops home without sending the Middle East into total chaos.. If Bush had listened to Biden in 2004 just think of how many valiant US soldiers' lives would have been saved and countless innocent Iraqi lives as well. A Biden presidency will make us safer and immediately aid us in earning the united states back the trust and respect that Bush has squandered.
Biden is way ahead of the curve on this one. Spread the word! A new jersey supporter

Posted by: delgirl27 | August 19, 2007 8:03 PM

o.k., so what does all that mean? is biden planning to more indifferent and undecidied than hillary? such courage in this man!!!

Posted by: wa_idaho_lonewolf | August 19, 2007 7:50 PM

o.k., so what does all that mean? is biden planning to more indifferent and undecidied than hillary? such courage in this man!!!

Posted by: wa_idaho_lonewolf | August 19, 2007 7:50 PM

He has been out in front on this issue from day 1. You can argue about the mistakes made to vote for the force authorization, but you can't argue that we now have nearly 170,000 troops in harms way. Joe Biden's plan to move forward with an actual settlement is the best chance we and the Iraqis have for moving forward. Let's all get on board.

Posted by: childressp | August 19, 2007 4:38 PM

Since the US president is preeminent in world affairs, it is wise for voters to choose someone of Joe Biden's experience and stature. Domestic policy is much more of a team effort between the Congress, White House, and even state legislatures, than foreign policy. There is more margin for error on domestic issues for that reason. Any of the Democrats can fill the bill on domestic policy. However, the US can ill afford another president without foreign policy credentials. Biden easily leads the pack on that score.

Posted by: DEfarmer | August 19, 2007 4:14 PM

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