‘I THINK THE JURY IS STILL OUT ON WMD’….I can appreciate that many Republicans are slightly embarrassed that Iraq didn’t have weapons of mass destruction, but that’s no reason for lawmakers to go into denial.

Last night, Rep. Curt Weldon (R-Pa.) faced off in a debate against Joseph Sestak (D), a former deputy chief of naval operations and the first director of Deep Blue, the Navy’s anti-terrorism group. Naturally, the war in Iraq was a major topic, and the two debated the principal reason used to launch the invasion.

While Sestak said Iraq was “not a clear nor a present danger” because no weapons of mass destruction have been found, Weldon said he knows of four sites in Basra and Nasiriyah that have yet to be searched for biological or chemical weapons.

“I think the jury is still out on WMD,” said Weldon.

It’s been three years, Charles Duelfer said Iraq did not possess, or have concrete plans to develop, nuclear, chemical or biological weapons, but Weldon wants his constituents to hold out hope that he was right all along.

Did I mention that Weldon is the vice chairman of the House Armed Services Committee?

Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.