I hope he does, because I faxed a letter to him at his Washington law office tonight.
First, a bit of background. Dole went on CNN tonight and took yet another nasty swipe at John Kerry on Chicken George's behalf. Basically, Dole tried suggesting that Kerry really wasn't hurt all that bad over there in 'Nam.
Well, Bob, not all of us can lose the use of a limb because of a war injury. I bet in your day, you also had to walk uphill in the snow to get to that one-room schoolhouse with no heat where you studied for 14 hours a day by candlelight before walking uphill in the snow back home. You had it tough in the old days, Bob. You also had to be careful not to get eaten by dinosaurs.
This whole situation is getting to a point where "disgusting" doesn't even begin to describe it. Suggesting Kerry wasn't hurt that badly is a far cry from suggesting, as one GOP attack dog did last week, that Kerry's wounds were self-inflicted, but it's still deplorable. Simply put, it is conduct unbefitting someone of Dole's status, both as a former senator and as a war veteran — especially when he could have used his TV time to talk about something good that George W. Bush could do for this country. I guess even Dole would have to admit that's a tough order.
Anyway, for those of you who may be interested, here's the letter:
Senator Bob Dole Alston & Bird LLP Fax: (202) 654-4850
Dear Sen. Dole,
This letter is in reference to your appearance Sunday on CNN’s “Late Edition.”
I am a 34-year-old male who, thanks to the sacrifices made by veterans like you, has witnessed the wretchedness of war only through television screens and history books. My family and I remain eternally grateful to the Americans and our allies who risked their lives in times of war and national crisis, and I have always respected you for your brave service to our country – whether it be fighting Nazis in the hills of Italy as a second lieutenant in the Army's 10th Mountain Division or fighting injustice as an influential member of the United States Senate.
For some reason, I had fooled myself into believing that Bob Dole was above the feculence of defamatory partisan attacks. I was both saddened and discouraged tonight to discover I was wrong.
Sunday evening, while appearing on CNN’s “Late Edition,” you referred to the war injuries suffered by Sen. John Kerry as “superficial wounds,” and you added that Sen. Kerry “never bled that I know of.” Sen. Dole, I’ve never stood on an active battlefield. I’ve never taken a bullet for my country, and shrapnel has never desecrated my body. But let me be abundantly clear: I respect and honor any veteran for any injuries he or she may have suffered while defending the United States of America. To criticize Sen. Kerry because the extent of his injuries apparently does not meet up to your personal requisites is mortifying. As a veteran yourself, you should be ashamed.
If you honestly believe the country would benefit from four more years of a George W. Bush presidency, you are certainly entitled to that opinion. However, I simply find it deplorable that you’ve decided to waste your time belittling someone else’s war injuries from 35 years ago instead of sharing with the American public your rationale for supporting President Bush’s agenda. Like many Americans who have been inundated with carefully crafted campaigns attacking everything from Sen. Kerry’s military record to his voting record to his physical appearance, I am left with the belief that even President Bush’s supporters, including yourself, don’t know why they support him.
I expected more from you than this, Sen. Dole. I am terribly disappointed in you.