Call her crazy, but Laura Ingraham doesn’t think it helps Republicans to re-open a debate over a war that the overwhelming majority of Americans now view as a mistake.
Ingraham weighed in Thursday night on the “O’Reilly Factor” about the recent war of words between Bill Clinton and Dick Cheney.
Clinton said this week that the former vice president’s scathing criticism of the Obama administration over the unraveling situation in Iraq — typified by an angry op-ed piece he co-wrote with his daughter, Liz Cheney — has been “unseemly.”
Cheney responded with a not-so-veiled reference to the Monica Lewinsky scandal during a speech Wednesday evening in Montana, quipping that “[i]f there’s somebody who knows something about unseemly, it’s Bill Clinton.”
Ingraham (who supported the Iraq War) told Bill O’Reilly (who also supported the Iraq War) that she has “enormous respect for the Cheneys.” She also said that she understands why the former vice president continues to believe the 2003 invasion was the right thing to do, despite the fact that the war’s central justification — the existence of “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq — proved to be a total dud.
But according to Ingraham, the war’s merits have been trumped by poll numbers. The people have spoken, and it would behoove Republicans to listen.
“The problem is when you go to the public on this, Bill, if we think this is somehow going to help the Republican Party in 2014 or 2016 to be re-litigating Iraq on a daily or weekly basis, I don’t think that’s a winner,” she told O’Reilly.
“The idea that you’re going to kind of one-up Clinton on this, I don’t think that that’s ultimately — as a political matter, that’s different than a foreign policy matter — it’s gonna work,” Ingraham added.
She may have seen the latest NBC News / Wall Street Journal poll that came out this week — or perhaps any survey on Iraq since 2006. According to the NBC / WSJ poll, 71 percent of Americans say that the war “wasn’t worth it.”
A USA Today / Pew Research survey released earlier this year showed that even a majority of Republicans consider the war a failure.