Smith Takes Credit for Responsible Plan

Over at Open Left, blogger Matt Stoller notes that Senator Gordon Smith is now claiming credit for helping to write the Responsible Plan to End the War in Iraq. The catch? Unlike his democratic rivals Jeff Merkley and Steve Novick, Smith refuses to actually endorse the plan:

Both Steve Novick and Jeff Merkley have endorsed a Responsible Plan to End the War in Iraq. It turns out that Gordon Smith's spokesperson is claiming authorship for Smith.
Smith supported the invasion and largely voted with the Bush administration and fellow Republican backers in Congress until he broke from his party and president in a December 2006 Senate floor speech. Since then, he has taken a number of positions that aligned with those of congressional Democrats. Smith has said he wants to bring home U.S. troops "safely, swiftly and with honor," Hammond said. And he has supported timetables for withdrawal and called for a small U.S. military presence in Iraq to fight terrorists, but not to serve as a police force there as they have in the current "troop surge" mission.

"He is already advocating for a lot of things that are here," said Hammond, adding that while Smith did not explicitly endorse it, "the plan is headed in the right direction."

Hammond also said Smith helped shape it through his discussions with some of the plan's authors.

So if Smith helped shape the plan, then surely he'd endorse it, right? Not quite. You see, that would actually involve breaking from his party on something when it matters.

Read the rest and comment over at Open Left.

Update: We've been reminded that over at the Jeff Merkley for US Senate campaign blog, netroots organizer Carla Axtman blogged about Gordon Smith's ridiculous position last month:

If A Responsible Plan To End The War In Iraq reads like something that Gordon Smith wrote, according to Hammond....

Then why didn't Smith write it?

And since the Plan is "headed in the right direction", why isn't Smith endorsing it?

In fact, Gordon Smith has done nothing but jawbone about the war. His ineffectiveness and inaction on this issue are as consistent as his spin doctoring.

Since Smith's alleged epiphany on the Iraq War, he's voted over and over again to keep troops there. As U.S. Senator for Oregon, Smith has had five years to step up and lead against the Iraq War. And now as an ardent advocate for John McCain, Smith is supporting the candidate who says we could be in Iraq for the next 100 years.

Oregonians have had enough.

Read the rest and discuss over there.


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