Cal  Thomas

Let's not forget Kerry. On Oct. 9, 2002, he said: "I will be voting to give the president of the United States the authority to use force - if necessary - to disarm Saddam Hussein because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security." On Jan. 23, 2003, he said: "Without question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime. . . . He presents a particularly grievous threat. . . . The threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real."

In addition to the occasional financial contribution, the media are making in-kind contributions to the Democrats by refusing to recall some of these statements and allowing speakers - from the platform to their high-priced interview booths above the gigantic TV studio, uh, convention hall - to recite the party line. They are in too many cases cheerleading for the party they love to love. ABC's Peter Jennings labeled Sen. Hillary Clinton a "rock star," which, to the aging anchors hungering for one more rendition of John Lennon's "Imagine," is a good thing.

Many of the broadcast and cable TV networks are treating Teresa Heinz Kerry's remarks to a reporter to "shove it," after he questioned her about statements from Republicans she considers "un-American," as candid or courageous. They are not calling her a liar for denying what a videotape shows she said. Heinz Kerry is rapidly becoming the Martha Mitchell of her party, emulating the loudmouthed and out-of-control wife of the late Nixon attorney general John Mitchell.

The Democrats want this to be a positive convention and for the most part it is. But last week, many of these same Democrats who are all about optimism and positive feelings were calling President Bush a liar. And their surrogates, from Michael Moore to Whoopi Goldberg to Linda Ronstadt, will continue their name-calling until Election Day.

This convention is a masquerade ball. Look for Republicans to announce it's midnight and to unmask the cover-up.

Cal Thomas

Get Cal Thomas' new book, What Works, at Amazon.

Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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