In the interest of keeping the debate honest, and my own party in check, I feel compelled to point out that - despite his one sided rendition of the intentions of the Senate Committee reporting on public misstatements in the build up to war - NRO's Andrew McCarthy has a point.
All one really needs to know about this exercise in legerdemain is revealed by SSCI Chairman Jay Rockefeller’s diktat — over Republican protest and adopted without a vote — that the Committee would focus myopically on prewar statements made by administration officials. That is, the SSCI opted to overlook the overflowing stream of bellicose commentary, often less restrained, by Democrats.Democrats who supported the invasion will always have the fall-back argument that they weren't spewing the misinformation themselves, but if our quest here is for accountability it is important to remember those who bought it willingly, when many others were willing to risk unpopularity, and even attacks on their patriotism in order to ask the tough questions we all should have been asking.
[...]The reality is that SSCI Democrats, among other Democrats, had access to the exact same intelligence about Iraq that Bush officials had. Indeed, many of them had it for years before there was a Bush administration. Like back in October 1998, when those selfsame Democrats were passing the Iraq Liberation Act, signed by none other than President Bill Clinton, which made regime change — the removal of Saddam Hussein from power — the official policy of the United States.
As a result, the SSCI report does not consider, for example, the public statements made by one Jay Rockefeller on the Senate floor on October 10, 2002, explaining his vote in favor of using force in Iraq: “Saddam Hussein represents a grave threat to the United States, and I have concluded we must use force to deal with him if all other means fail.” (And how curious that the Chairman’s speech, for some reason, is no longer available on the Senate website.)