Monday, June 18, 2007

VoteVets Founder Jon Soltz Rocks Take Back America Conference

I just attended a great Take Back America session called "Out of Iraq; What comes Next" that included Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA) and founder Jon Soltz.

Congresswoman Lee was as strong as she always is on the issue of Iraq, saying what the crowd here already knows: That George W. Bush is interested only in continuing the occupation and trying to keep an increasingly tiny percentage of the American people in the dark about what's going on in Iraq.

"We say what's next in terms of out of Iraq, but in their minds, what's next is more of the same lying and stalling and playing politics with peoples' lives that got us into this mess in the first place," said Lee, to thunderous applause. "And that must stop -- that's what's going on over at the White House."

But as well received as Lee was, it was Iraq war Veteran Soltz who electrified the room.

In addition to showing the popular VoteVets television ads that many believe helped swing some close Congressional elections into the Democratic column in 2006, Soltz had harsh words for Bush's tough-guy talk while the troops in Iraq are the ones having to back up his big mouth.

"There was nothing worse for us in Iraq than to be fighting insurgents every day and hear my Commander-in-Chief, a draft-dodger from Vietnam encouraging my enemies with words like 'bring it on,'" said Soltz to the packed room. "That's real easy to say when your kids are in Argentina."

Soltz also commented on the fact that Osama bin Laden in now celebrating day 2,100 of freedom since Bush uttered his empty "dead or alive" threat in 2001.

"We've gotten away from that in this country," said Soltz of any resolve to actually catch the man who claimed responsibility for the September 11 attacks. "With 90 percent of our Army in Iraq, bin Laden is eating lamb chops back in Afghanistan."

And Soltz talked about the mission of his organization saying that VoteVets will continue to go into Congressional districts and hold every Republican "…accountable for voting against the troops and voting against the military and voting for policies that embolden the enemy."

"When George Bush stands up and says we're going to be in Iraq for 50 years, he has just handed al-Qaeda a recruiting poster," said Soltz. "We say we're not there for their oil and then our president stands up and says we're going to be there for 50 years."

"Thank you, Mr. Bush, for emboldening the enemy. Thank you for emboldening Iran."

And, with that, Take Back America is off to a great start.