Yes, Joe Biden voted for the Authorization to Use Military Force in Iraq. But was he the same breed of sheep as everyone else who did? Was it solely political calculus like is suspected of Hillary? Or, total capitulation and trust in the President?...
You might recall a certain Rose Garden ceremony with a certain flesh-haired loser Democrat who sold out the Party (and as it turns out, the country) by going behind closed doors and crafting deal with Bush and the Republicans.
But who did Dick Fucking Gephardt really screw over? David Corn reminds us...
One of Biden's better moments came in the run-up to the war with Iraq. In the fall of 2002, the Bush administration, claiming Saddam Hussein had amassed loads of WMDs that he could hand to al Qaeda for attacks against the United States, was demanding that the House and Senate grant Bush the authority to invade Iraq whenever he wanted. Rather than cave to Bush, Biden, the chairman of the foreign relations committee, worked with Republican Senators Richard Lugar and Chuck Hagel to craft an alternative: a resolution that would allow Bush to attack Iraq only for the purposes of destroying Iraq's WMDs and only after seeking UN approval. If the UN withheld permission, Bush would have to come back to Congress and prove that the threat was so "grave" that only military action could eliminate it. This was a wily legislative maneuver that could have averted a war. (And Biden told me and Michael Isikoff during an interview for our book, Hubris: The Inside Story of Spin, Scandal, and the Selling of the Iraq War, that he had received backdoor encouragement from Secretary of State Colin Powell.) But Biden's bipartisan measure was ultimately derailed by a fellow Democrat: House minority leader Richard Gephardt, who essentially accepted the White House's blank-check approach. After Gephardt did that, Republican senators told Biden, How can we be to the left of Dick Gephardt? "I was so angry," Biden later said. "I was frustrated. But I never second-guess another man's political judgment."
Biden went on to vote for the Iraq war resolution. Which demonstrated his Washington-ness. He had tried for something better. When that failed, he, too, accepted the prevailing notion. But his pre-vote effort to create a much more limited resolution will afford the Obama-Biden ticket a small measure of cover when its foes point out that Obama's main charge against John McCain (he supported the Iraq invasion) can also be applied to his running-mate.
As Corn points out, Biden still voted for the War, but what he wanted was NOT the bullshit he ended up putting his name on.
It was a mistake, but not as glaring as would appear at first glance, and much more excusable and reconcilable.