- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Specter is soft on Bush

“(A few) Good measures” (Editorial, Oct. 2) paints a rosy picture of the “last legislative week before lawmakers head to their states …” and concludes by saying, “Congress’ last week cannot be fairly heralded as a resounding success ….”

The only immigration concord is a nonfunded partial fence. Sen. Arlen Specter blocked bills intended to detain and remove dangerous aliens and to reaffirm state and local law enforcement’s inherent authority to observe federal immigration laws, among other commonsense public safety measures.

He admittedly did so to force “comprehensive immigration reform” — amnesty (paths to citizenship) for the millions of illegal aliens in this country and huge increases in unnecessary guest-worker visas — at the cost of Americans’ financial futures and safety. Even the Department of Homeland Security confesses it is unable to track aliens or verify their backgrounds.

Mr. Specter also voted “yea” for trials by military commissions (S-3930). It hands President Bush unilateral authority to determine whether government can abuse supposed enemy detainees; gives government retroactive immunity in authorizing torture; and permits prosecutors to use secret, abuse-coerced evidence against detainees — even for the death penalty. Contrary to the Geneva Conventions, this also puts Americans at risk.

Now Mr. Specter wants to surrender citizens to Mr. Bush under this and other bills granting secret government spying, searches and immunity for officials so they can rewrite law. The House already has passed its version. Thank Mr. Specter and friends for their service to our country. They work tirelessly, sacrificing us to their self-interests despite international law, our Constitution and their oaths of office.

M.L. PINKARD

Lafayette, Calif.

Smearing George Allen

I am following up on the recent articles about Sen. George Allen during his time as a student at the University of Virginia (“Nasty in Virginia and what to do about it,” Editorial, Sept. 26). After reading the articles, I feel a strong responsibility to go on record about my experience at UVa. with George.

I played football at the University of Virginia from 1969 through 1974. George was a quarterback and the new guy coming in. I was a receiver, and he and I quickly struck up friendship that lasted through our remaining years at Virginia. He came home with me for Thanksgiving his first year at UVa. because the rest of his family was in California, and his dad was coaching the Redskins. My parents loved him and remember him fondly to this day. We took several classes together over the years and spent a lot of time together both on and off the field.

For the record, I will say the following:

1. From the first day I met George, he was consistent. He didn’t talk much, was fairly quiet, didn’t make excuses and didn’t accept them, either. He worked hard to learn and do his job and was the kind of person who let his actions speak for themselves. He didn’t tell you what he was going to do; he just did it.

2. I spent a lot of time with George over those years and never heard him make any racist remarks, nor did I ever believe that he was in any way prejudiced. He was an equal-opportunity person and quarterback: If you messed up, he let you know, and if you did a good job, he let you know. George Allen was not a racist; he was a leader. He was well-respected on our team, and I was proud to be his friend and teammate.

I also knew Ken Shelton very well. I have seen several articles and statements that imply that Ken and George were very close. For the record, Ken and George were not that close — I would classify them as having been casual friends. I cannot imagine Ken’s motivation for saying what he has been quoted as saying, but I will comment that his statements about George using racial epithets should not be believed. Not only did I not ever hear George use such language, but I heard him tell other people not to use it and especially not to use it around him. I have no doubt that Ken Shelton has made his statements to discredit George and ruin his career.

MICHAEL A. MCGUGAN

Silver Spring

China and North Korea

Assuming that the North Korean bomb test really was nuclear, the United States needs a response (“U.S. doubts Korean test was nuclear,” Page 1, Tuesday). All along, we have been hamstrung in our confrontation with North Korea because North Korea effectively keeps South Korea hostage.

Seoul, a city of 10 million people, is within easy artillery range. An overt military strike on the North has always been a poor option. But we do have one card to play: China. It is the only nation with real influence over Kim Jong-il. To date, the Chinese have viewed it in their interest to exacerbate the foreign policy problems of the United States whether in Iran, Sudan or North Korea. They will not help us through either good will or self-interest. But we can make it in their interest to help.

We can suggest to China that unless the North Korean situation improves, we will encourage Japan to become nuclear. We can’t guarantee that the Japanese will follow through on this. Further, we can be ambiguous about whether we intend to follow through. But that doesn’t matter. Even a small probability of such an outcome would be untenable for China.

We tell the Chinese that if a Japanese bomb doesn’t restrain the North Koreans, we will give the same green light to South Korea. We might want to remind the Chinese of our warming relations with Vietnam as well. Put the ball in China’s court. See if it can deal with the risk of not helping us.

JAMES D. SINCLAIR

Lexington Park, Md.

Disingenuous Democrats

The article “Democrats veer to the right in fight for House,” (Page 1, yesterday) has left me scratching my head. The very idea of a pro-life, pro-Second Amendment Democrat should give us pause to check the Kool-Aid. To think a Democrat could honestly feel this way on such major issues may be the very catalyst needed to make drug testing and polygraphs a part of future elections.

Simply saying they are pro-Second Amendment is just a quick and easy sleight-of-hand misrepresentation of their actual views of being pro-gun control.

In the article, National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) spokesman Jonathan Collegio nailed it when he said, “It took 12 years in the minority for Democrats to realize that they couldn’t win elections by running like Democrats — so they’ve drafted candidates who either masquerade as conservatives or keep mum on the issues as long as politically possible.”

What this really says is that the Democrats are using lies and deceit to try to win. This makes it a pretty safe bet that they are hiding something should they continue to dodge open debates with their opponents. The people have a right to know.

Paranoid? Nope, just realistic. I am not so old and feeble of mind that I have forgotten the lessons of the Trojan horse and the wolf in sheep’s clothing. It won’t take long for any newly elected Democrats to veer back to the far left should they win their respective elections.

With all the smoke and mirrors the Democrats are using this year, they might as well hire David Copperfield to head the Democratic National Committee.

DENNIS HAYWARD

New Bern, N.C.

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