A reader points to this truly appalling passage from the debate (scroll down about 60%):
Is that right? Did George W. Bush run for President of the United States “never dreaming” that he might have to commit troops to combat? Was he really that disconnected from reality?
Historical trivia question, to which I don’t know the answer: Who was the last President who got through a term without committing troops to combat? Did Carter pull it off? Or do we have to go back to Hoover? (Update: Duhhhh…forgot the Iranian hostage rescue. Brad DeLong says Hoover sent troops to Shanghai, and that the answer to the question is “W.H. Harrison.”)
Whatever the answer, to run for President without considering that one of the Presiden’s Constitutional roles is to be Commander-in-Chief suggests a level of emotional immaturity that is truly frightening.
Or perhaps Mr. Bush was perfectly well aware of that, and his comment Thursday night was just another little fib.
I can’t think of a third alternative.