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August 18, 2004

A Congressman Speaks his Mind

Gosh...It appears my congressman has raised something of a stink in his comments upon leaving the House of Representatives (I tried to find a FreeRepublic link about this but oddly enough, they weren't discussing it).

Doug Bereuter(R) has officially broken ranks from his party and declare the Iraq war a mistake.

"Knowing now what I know about the reliance on the tenuous or insufficiently corroborated intelligence used to conclude that Saddam maintained a substantial WMD (weapons of mass destruction) arsenal, I believe that launching the pre-emptive military action was not justified."

As a result of the war, he said, "our country's reputation around the world has never been lower and our alliances are weakened."

Doug has always been a straight shooter and it's evidenced in his statement today. He wasn't just a rubber stamp. He was a senior member of the International Relations Committee and vice-chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. I remember him showing up for some parade I was playing in when I was in junior high. He was very friendly and open to all.

That's one of the reasons he served my district for 13 terms. He always did what was right for his constituents. Democrats in this state were always ready to support him.

Unfortunately for Doug Bereuter, the rest of his party moved to the right as he stayed right where'd he'd always been since being elected for his first term in 1978, right in the middle.

A contentious race for his seat is taking place where he will be replaced by Matt Connealy(D), who isn't too far off from Bereuter's positions on most issues, or Jeff Fortenberry(R), a Tom Delay clone who has only lived in Nebraska for 9 years.

Hopefully, Nebraskans in my district will be inclined to elect Connealy, who has the state's interests at heart, rather than someone who represents the culture war and everything that is against the best interests of the 1st District.

Posted by Half-Cocked at August 18, 2004 08:02 PM


A number of years ago I contacted Bereuter's office to ask about his position on Clinton's plan to send peacekeeping troops into Bosnia (seemed like a reasonably good idea to me, but what did I know). He sent back a three-page reply outlining why he was opposed to it. The majority of the text would certainly have been cut-and-paste from his official statement, but it was well-written and thoughtful, and he took the time to add a handwritten note at the end of it calling attention to the fact that our views differed and hoping that I would appreciate the specific reasons for his view. I should also note that the letter arrived within just a couple of days of my query.

The reasons he gave for not going into Bosnia could probably be cut-and-pasted into anyone's justification for not going into Iraq, so his opposition isn't uncharacteristic or surprising. He's always had a problem with open-ended troop deployments and it takes a compelling case to get him to sign onto something. Unfortunately, that compelling case is looking pretty thin today.


Posted by: Thomas at August 18, 2004 11:08 PM

I always liked Bereuter.
Has Hagel weighed in on "the stink" yet?

Posted by: Kevin at August 19, 2004 09:20 AM

And speaking of "stink", I bet this place really stunk to high-heaven. What's up, man? Has Lincoln been running an incredibly high feline surplus for the past year?

Posted by: Kevin at August 19, 2004 05:19 PM

Yeah, Kevin. Lincoln has an obscenely high feline surplus as demonstrated by the rate at which these stories appear in the local news.

Posted by: Steve at August 19, 2004 10:01 PM