State of Virginia Archives: on War & Peace


George Allen: Iran is a threat; prevent getting nuclear weapons

On foreign policy, Allen was critical of the Obama administration and talked tough on the situation in the Middle East. "The biggest threat I think is Iran," Allen said. "If Iran gets nuclear weapons that needs to be prevented."
Source: NBC-12 coverage of 2012 Virginia Senate Debate Sep 20, 2012

Bob Marshall: No US military in Libyan war without congressional consent

When the moderator asked the four about Obama's decision to involve the U.S. military in the Libyan uprising without congressional consent, Jackson, Marshall and Radtke quickly denounced it roundly.

Allen, however, didn't pounce on Obama. Instead, he recalled the gravity and anxiety of sending U.S. troops into Afghanistan after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist strikes. "In my estimation, it's the most solemn decision a president has to make," Allen said. "I have made that decision as far as Iraq and Afghanistan."

"The concern I have is not whether we have a (congressional) authorization of force, it's whether or not our military is going to have the equipment, the armament, the up-to-date technology that is paramount as they're trying to protect our freedoms," he said. "I'm really worried about the military readiness of our country."

Source: 4-NBC Washington on 2012 Virginia Senate debate May 26, 2012

Jamie Radtke: No US military in Libyan war without congressional consent

When the moderator asked the four about Obama's decision to involve the U.S. military in the Libyan uprising without congressional consent, Jackson, Marshall and Radtke quickly denounced it roundly.

Allen, however, didn't pounce on Obama. Instead, he recalled the gravity and anxiety of sending U.S. troops into Afghanistan after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist strikes. "In my estimation, it's the most solemn decision a president has to make," Allen said. "I have made that decision as far as Iraq and Afghanistan."

"The concern I have is not whether we have a (congressional) authorization of force, it's whether or not our military is going to have the equipment, the armament, the up-to-date technology that is paramount as they're trying to protect our freedoms," he said. "I'm really worried about the military readiness of our country."

Source: 4-NBC Washington on 2012 Virginia Senate debate May 26, 2012

Bob Marshall: Opposes sending troops overseas without declaration of war

The debate included an inquiry on whether the candidates supported the president sending troops overseas without a declaration of war from Congress. Radtke, Jackson and Marshall all were adamantly against it, but Allen instead attacked Obama for not supporting potential government opposition in Iran.

"The concern I have is not whether you have an authorization of force," Allen said. "I really worry about the military readiness of our country, regardless of whether or not there's an authorization."

Source: Washington Examiner on 2012 Virginia Senate debate May 25, 2012

Jamie Radtke: Opposes sending troops overseas without declaration of war

The debate included an inquiry on whether the candidates supported the president sending troops overseas without a declaration of war from Congress. Radtke, Jackson and Marshall all were adamantly against it, but Allen instead attacked Obama for not supporting potential government opposition in Iran.

"The concern I have is not whether you have an authorization of force," Allen said. "I really worry about the military readiness of our country, regardless of whether or not there's an authorization."

Source: Washington Examiner on 2012 Virginia Senate debate May 25, 2012

Bob McDonnell: 230 Virginians gave lives for War on Terror, including Iraq

Since September 11th, 2001, nearly 14,000 members of the Virginia National Guard have left their families and jobs to defend our freedom. Over 230 Virginians have given their lives in the Global War on Terror. On December 18th, the last convoy of American soldiers left Iraq for Kuwait, ending our nearly 9 years in that nation. Gentlemen, thank you for your deep commitment to freedom.
Source: 2012 Virginia State of the State Address Jan 11, 2012

Tim Kaine: Supported Obama's stopping the Iraq War

Allen. "Were you or were you not advocating for their agenda? And their agenda surely wasn't consistent with what's in the best interests of the people of Virginia."

"Wiping out al-Qaeda?" Kaine responded "Stopping the Iraq War? Saving the auto industry? Is that not being consistent with Virginia's interests? I just see it a different way than you do, George." The candidates were asked about conservative proposals to declare that life begins at conception. Kaine opposed this, explaining that it would not only outlaw abortion, but would outlaw contraception such as the birth control pill and intra-uterine devices.

Allen said that defining life as beginning at conception would not outlaw contraception, as "contraception" means stopping conception--that is, preventing fertilization from taking place.

Source: Eric Kleefeld reporting on 2012 Virginia Senate debate Dec 7, 2011

Ed Gillespie: As Bush spokesperson, defended Iraqi surge & al Qaeda link

Another new arrival in the West Wing set up a rapid-response PR unit hard-wired into General David Petraeus' shop. Ed Gillespie, the new presidential counselor, organized daily conference calls between Washington and the military in Baghdad to map out ways of selling the surge.

From the start of the Bush plan, the White House communications office had been blitzing an e-mail list of as many as 5,000 journalists and others with talking points or rebuttals of criticism, in various categories--"Myths/Facts" or "Setting the Record Straight" to take issue with negative news articles, and "In Case You Missed It" to distribute positive articles or speeches.

Gillespie arranged several presidential speeches to make strategic arguments, such as comparing Iraq to Vietnam or warning of Iranian interference. When critics assailed Bush for overstating ties between al-Qaeda and the group called al-Qaeda in Iraq, Gillespie organized a Bush speech to make his case.

Source: Washington Post on 2014 Virginia Senate race Sep 8, 2007

Harris Miller: It was a mistake to go to Iraq; we were misled by Powell

Q: Would you have voted in October of 2002 to authorize the Iraq war?

WEBB: I clearly would not have. If you read the “Washington Post” piece I wrote in September 2002, I was saying don’t do it.

Q: Mr. Miller, would you have voted to authorize?

MILLER: I didn’t have access to all the intelligence that Senator Allen and other senators had. But looking back, no.

Q: Was it a mistake to go to Iraq?

MILLER: Yes, sir.

WEBB: It was and I said so at the time.

Q: Is there any difference between your position and his?

WEBB: I think I arrived at it far earlier than Harris Miller did. I think this is recent for him.

Q: At the time that we went were you cheering that decision or opposing it instinctively?

MILLER: I wasn’t opposing it instinctively because I believed General Colin Powell when he said that there was a plan to deal with the post-war effort. In fact, that was a lie. We were misled by the president. It became clear within three or four months it was a huge mistake.

Source: Virginia 2006 Democratic Senate Primary debate [X-ref Webb] Jun 9, 2006

James Webb: It was a mistake to go to Iraq; said so before Senate vote

Q: Would you have voted in October of 2002 to authorize the Iraq war?

WEBB: I clearly would not have. If you read the “Washington Post” piece I wrote in September 2002, I was saying don’t do it.

Q: Mr. Miller, would you have voted to authorize?

MILLER: I didn’t have access to all the intelligence that Senator Allen and other senators had. But looking back, no.

Q: Was it a mistake to go to Iraq?

MILLER: Yes, sir.

WEBB: It was and I said so at the time.

Q: Is there any difference between your position and his?

WEBB: I think I arrived at it far earlier than Harris Miller did. I think this is recent for him.

Q: At the time that we went were you cheering that decision or opposing it instinctively?

MILLER: I wasn’t opposing it instinctively because I believed General Colin Powell when he said that there was a plan to deal with the post-war effort. In fact, that was a lie. We were misled by the president. It became clear within three or four months it was a huge mistake.

Source: Virginia 2006 Democratic Senate Primary debate Jun 9, 2006

  • The above quotations are from Commonwealth of Virginia Politicians: Archives.
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