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Ear to the Ground

Staying the Rhetorical Course

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Posted on Oct 26, 2006

George Bush has dealt with the failure of his “stay the course” strategy by pretending it never existed, but will other candidates who once abused the phrase follow suit?  And will the media hold them accountable?


Media Matters for America:

In several other cases, Republican candidates have publicly distanced themselves from the “stay the course” rhetoric or claimed they never endorsed a “stay the course” strategy. But in covering these races, the media have failed to highlight these candidates’ prior use of the phrase:

  * Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA): In 2005, Santorum repeatedly aligned himself with Bush on Iraq. In an August 30, 2005, statement, he said, “The road has not been easy—America has lost many fine military personnel—but it is critical that we stay the course and give our people the support and recognition to enable them to spread democracy around the world.” On December 12, 2005, his spokesman told reporters that Santorum “does believe that things are going well over in Iraq” and “agrees with the president that we should stay the course.” And in a December 19, 2005, statement, Santorum noted, “The President has been clear, we will stay the course in Iraq to send a message to those who seek to destroy democracy and hurt innocent people.” But on the October 24, 7 p.m., edition of MSNBC’s Hardball, when asked by host Chris Matthews about Snow’s statement “that ‘stay the course’ no longer applies as a slogan for this administration’s policy,” Santorum responded: “Well, it’s never been my policy. I don’t know whether it’s been the administration’s policy or not, but it’s not been mine.” Matthews did not challenge Santorum’s statement.
  * Rep. J.D. Hayworth (AZ-05): On April 14, 2004, Hayworth stated that Bush “made a strong, clear case for why we must not fail and he left no doubt in the minds of allies and adversaries alike that America will stay the course in Iraq until democracy is established and secure.” Further, during a June 15 floor statement in support of H.R. 861, he said, “This remains an imperfect world with mistakes and challenges that likewise remain, but let us stand steadfast, true to the course, true to the cause, true to freedom. Vote ‘yes’ on this resolution.” But during an October 23 debate, Hayworth appeared to follow the White House in abandoning the rhetoric. When his Democratic opponent, Harry Mitchell, called him a “cheerleader for a failed stay-the-course policy in Iraq,” Hayworth responded, “It’s not a matter of staying the course. It’s a matter of finishing the job, responding and changing tactics with the overall unapologetic goal of victory—victory to put down the forces of Islamofascism and see a democracy flourish in the troubled Middle East.” But while an October 24 AP article on the debate noted both comments, it failed to point out Hayworth’s previous statements that the United States must “stay the course” or stay “true to the course.”

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By culater, October 26, 2006 at 2:05 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

George Semsel is right.  The Democrats are toast.  Buttered, jellied and ready for consumption.  Don’t you get it???  Let me see ... . who said it?  “Doesnt matter who votes, all that matters is who counts the votes”  Diebold?  Has is occurred to anyone else that Diebold is quite close to diabolical?

“having the qualities of a devil; devilish; fiendish; outrageously wicked”

All is lost…. why even bother to vote?

Culater

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By mark shertoff, October 26, 2006 at 10:58 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Now that Bush denies saying ‘stay the course’, Joe Liberman may be the last man at it’s helm.

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By George S. Semsel, October 26, 2006 at 8:05 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Who cares who said what. It doesn’t matter any more than does voting anymore. The outcome of the election has already been determined. Contrary to the polls and media hype, the republicans have once again won.

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By Aram Schefrin, October 26, 2006 at 7:58 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This is why I have been posting comments everywhere I could suggesting that the ad which one of the Dem national organizations made, juxtaposing Bush’s comment on Stephanopoulos about not staying the course with a long list of clips where he used the phrase, be used in state races with the addition of a clip of the local Republican candidate using the phrase. You can’t leave stuff like this to the media, for chrissake.

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By kevin99999, October 26, 2006 at 7:28 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The corporate will try to help out GOP as much as possible as it always does. In this country, the notion of ‘free press’ is synonymous with corporate press, which means it is free to disinform the public in the pursuit of right wing and corporate agenda.

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By chris, October 26, 2006 at 5:44 am Link to this comment
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Does it really matter any longer if our leaders aren’t held accountable for the lies they spread?  It would seem the answer is no.  Which is quite handy for our leaders, wether they are dem’s or republicans, they are leavin the majority of the voting public confused, angry, and apathetic to politics, which in turn is putting an end to voting, after all, who wants to vote when you have no idea who or what you are voting for.  Whats even worse, is we are limited to a two party system, so people seem to feel that they are forced to vote for “the lesser of two evils” when they do vote.  This is very sad and tragic for our country.

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