Karl Rove: "Character matters"

If Rove has been cleared, a speech in New Hampshire is just a taste of things to come.

Published June 13, 2006 1:21PM (EDT)

If Karl Rove is indeed off the hook in the Valerie Plame case, we can look forward to hearing a lot more from him in public places as the 2006 elections near. As his lawyer was getting the good news from Patrick Fitzgerald, Rove was flying to New Hampshire Monday to speak at a fundraiser for the state's Republican Party, which is nearly broke because of legal expenses it has incurred in a phone-jamming prosecution.

Here's some of what he said:

The war in Iraq: "We have no excuses to make for it."

John Kerry and Jack Murtha: "They are profoundly wrong ... Like too many Democrats, it strikes me that they are ready to give the green light to go to war, but when it gets tough, they fall back on that party's old platform of cutting and running. They may be with you for the first few bullets but they won't be there for the last tough battles."

The difference between Democrats and Republicans: "They are for higher taxes, we are for lower taxes. They are for higher spending, we are for lower spending ... What would the result have been if they were in charge? Less economic growth, longer recession, bigger government, bigger deficits. That is the difference between the two parties.

George W. Bush and 9/11: "Sometimes history sends you something that you can't plan for. And what really matters then is the character of the person who occupies [the White House] ... Character matters."

By Tim Grieve

Tim Grieve is a senior writer and the author of Salon's War Room blog.

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