TALKIN’ ABOUT GOD….Is Ronald Klain, Al Gore’s former chief of staff, right about this?

Beware the temptation to snicker, because therein lies defeat.

That is an important warning for those Democrats who have spent the days since President Bush’s press conference making light of his invocation of “the Almighty” in the defense of his Iraq policy. Specifically, they’ve been snickering over the president’s contention that “freedom is the Almighty’s gift to every man and woman in this world.”

Some critics have called the president’s message “missionary.” Some have said that it suggests a case for “religious war” by U.S. armed forces. Others have simply waved it about as evidence of a president who is intellectually or strategically shallow.

Is this right? Newsprint has always gotten ink all over your hands, but these days it has another deficiency: no hyperlinks. So I don’t know which Democrats allegedly said these things.

But I hope it’s not true. In fact, my initial reaction was that this was the strongest part of Bush’s entire performance. For about a full minute he seemed animated and sure of himself, not grasping for words or ducking for cover.

Bill Clinton talked about God. Jimmy Carter talked about God. So did LBJ, JFK, Harry Truman, and FDR. Every Democratic president has talked about God. I sure hope Democrats aren’t going off the rails now just because Bush mentioned God once in a one-hour press conference.

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