Kerry pledges to restore trust

By WND Staff

Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry, under fire for using re-enactments of war footage and film he pledged never to use in a campaign, tonight pledged to restore trust in the White House and tell the truth to the American people.

“We have it in our power to change the world again,” he said. “But only if we’re true to our ideals – and that starts by telling the truth to the American people. That is my first pledge to you tonight. As President, I will restore trust and credibility to the White House.”

Kerry went on to call into question, once again, whether Presidnet Bush was honest with the American people about the situation in Iraq.

“I will be a commander in chief who will never mislead us into war,” he said. “I will have a vice president who will not conduct secret meetings with polluters to rewrite our environmental laws. I will have a secretary of defense who will listen to the best advice of our military leaders. And I will appoint an attorney general who actually upholds the Constitution of the United States.”

Kerry attempted to portray an upbeat Democratic Party and campaign that has, at times, been criticized for polarizing and negativity.

“We can do better and we will,” he said. “We’re the optimists. For us, this is a country of the future. We’re the can do people. And let’s not forget what we did in the 1990s. We balanced the budget. We paid down the debt. We created 23 million new jobs. We lifted millions out of poverty and we lifted the standard of living for the middle class. We just need to believe in ourselves — and we can do it again.”

Careful to position his criticisms of the president as patriotic, Kerry recalled the unity that America witnessed after Sept. 11.

“Remember the hours after September 11th, when we came together as one to answer the attack against our homeland,” he said. “We drew strength when our firefighters ran up the stairs and risked their lives, so that others might live — when rescuers rushed into smoke and fire at the Pentagon, when the men and women of Flight 93 sacrificed themselves to save our nation’s Capitol, when flags were hanging from front porches all across America, and strangers became friends. It was the worst day we have ever seen, but it brought out the best in all of us.

“I am proud that after September 11th all our people rallied to President Bush’s call for unity to meet the danger,” he added. “There were no Democrats. There were no Republicans. There were only Americans. How we wish it had stayed that way.”

Kerry said there are some who criticize him for seeing complexities.”

“I do,” he said, “because some issues just aren’t all that simple. Saying there are weapons of mass destruction in Iraq doesn’t make it so. Saying we can fight a war on the cheap doesn’t make it so. And proclaiming mission accomplished certainly doesn’t make it so.”

Kerry pledged as president he would “ask hard questions and demand hard evidence. I will immediately reform the intelligence system — so policy is guided by facts, and facts are never distorted by politics. And as president, I will bring back this nation’s time-honored tradition: the United States of America never goes to war because we want to, we only go to war because we have to.”

Kerry pledged again to get the support of allies in the conflict in Iraq or any other conflict.

“I defended this country as a young man and I will defend it as president,” he said. “Let there be no mistake: I will never hesitate to use force when it is required. Any attack will be met with a swift and certain response. I will never give any nation or international institution a veto over our national security. And I will build a stronger American military.”

He pledged to add 40,000 active duty troops – “not in Iraq, but to strengthen American forces that are now overstretched, overextended, and under pressure. We will double our special forces to conduct anti-terrorist operations. We will provide our troops with the newest weapons and technology to save their lives – and win the battle. And we will end the backdoor draft of National Guard and reservists.”

Kerry said he “will fight a smarter, more effective war on terror.” He said he will lead a global effort against nuclear proliferation – “to keep the most dangerous weapons in the world out of the most dangerous hands in the world.”

He laid out an economic plan “to build a stronger America:”

  • new incentives to revitalize manufacturing;
  • investment in technology and innovation that will create the good-paying jobs of the future;
  • close the tax loopholes that reward companies for shipping jobs overseas;
  • trade and compete in the world;
  • return to fiscal responsibility;
  • Kerry pledged not to raise taxes on middle-class Americans.

Kerry pledged not to raise taxes on middle-class Americans.

“You’ve heard a lot of false charges about this in recent months,” he said. “So let me say straight out what I will do as president: I will cut middle-class taxes. I will reduce the tax burden on small business. And I will roll back the tax cuts for the wealthiest individuals who make over $200,000 a year, so we can invest in job creation, health care and education.”