Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Ron Paul Explains Fundraising Boom: Americans ‘Don’t Like The War’
Yesterday, Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul (R-TX), who has “a libertarian tilt and an out-of-Iraq pitch,” set a single day fundraising record for the Republican field by hauling “in more than $4.2 million in nearly 24 hours.” Asked by MSNBC’s Norah O’Donnell this morning about what he “attribute[d]” the “success” of the effort to, Paul said it was his anti-war “message” because Americans “don’t like the war.”

O’Donnell followed up by asking Paul about his reaction to the news that 2007 is now the deadliest year of the war yet. “It proves the surge didn’t work,” replied Paul. “The surge actually made things worse for us.” O’Donnell responded by noting that violence was down in October, to which Paul rebutted, “one month doesn’t make a year.”

Paul’s attribution of his fundraising success to the continuing desire of Americans to end the war in Iraq is supported by a new ABC News/Washington Post poll out today that finds that “a record six in 10 want the level of U.S. forces reduced.” According to ABC’s analysis, the “results…seem to reflect a continued hardening of attitudes on Iraq”:
Views on progress are unchanged from early September, and they haven’t been positive since December 2005, shortly after the Iraqi elections. […]
All told, 63 percent say the war was not worth fighting, almost exactly its average this year, and a majority, steadily since December 2004. Intensity against the war continues to run high, with 51 percent saying they feel “strongly” that it was not worth fighting, more than double its strong supporters.

While the majority of Americans want redeployment out of Iraq in some form or another, the current debate around the war is drifting away from the core principle that a timetable for redeployment best serves America’s national security interests. The Center for American Progress has a strategy for how progressives can get the debate back on track.

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