The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Saturday, September 11, 2004  

On the War on Iraq

U.S. Rep. Joe Hoeffel (D-Pa.), who is running against the all-too-incumbent Sen. Arlen Specter in this year’s Senate contest in Pennsylvania, is in the news today.

The funny things about this is that some time before Rep. Hoeffel declared his candidacy against Sen. Specter, a period during which no Democrat had the guts to step up to the plate, thereby encouraging my own exploratory efforts, I saw a small two-inch item in either the Philadelphia Inquirer or the Philadelphia Daily News, I forget which, in which Rep. Hoeffel raised serious questions about the Bush administration’s conduct in the war in Iraq.

As soon as I read that minor item, buried deep within the paper’s pages, I knew Rep. Hoeffel was going to challenge Sen. Specter. I just knew it.

And at that point I knew my quixotic, largely-having-gone-nowhere campaign, an effort based solely on the notion that Pennsylvania Democrats would not put forward anyone against Sen. Specter, came to an end. And I was glad of it. I can’t think of a better man or woman to take up this challenge.

I knew, just reading those two or three paragraphs, that Rep. Hoeffel, who had voted for what turned out to be treated as a blanket authorization for war in Iraq, would soon announce his campaign for the Senate seat occupied -- and I mean that -- by Sen. Specter.

And I knew he would be my candidate for the U.S. Senate.

Fittingly, in today’s Philadelphia Inquirer, reporter Carrie Budoff writes, in “Hoeffel Rethinks Vote on Iraq War: “I voted for the war because I was convinced we needed to disarm Saddam Hussein of weapons of mass destruction. I am now convinced we were lied to.”

It’s time to take Rep. Hoeffel, a man who speaks truth to error, seriously. Rep. Hoeffel can beat Sen. Specter. DONATE HERE.

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