After Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld told a soldier who complained about the military's insufficient supply of vehicle armor that "you have to go to war with the Army you have," Center for Security Policy president and conservative columnist Frank J. Gaffney, Jr. attempted to provide cover for Rumsfeld by attacking Senator John Kerry. In back-to-back December 8 appearances on MSNBC's Hardball and FOX News' The O'Reilly Factor, Gaffney attacked Kerry for voting against the $87 billion defense supplemental appropriations bill for 2004, which included funding for military vehicle armor.
But the $87 billion defense bill passed. Media Matters for America has previously noted that while Kerry did vote against one version of the bill, President Bush threatened to veto another version six days after that.
From MSNBC's Hardball:
GAFFNEY: You will remember, a couple of months ago, it was very much in the heart of the debate. Was the $87 billion supposed to be spent for this purpose? John Kerry said no. We need this kind of money. We need to up-armor these troops. And we need to give them the full support of the American people.
From FOX News' The O'Reilly Factor:
GAFFNEY: I'd like to say that we ought to be producing more of this and an awful lot of other equipment that the military needs today. And it's heartening to have a lot of people say, look, spend the money you need to put this equipment in their hands. We should be doing it. And it wasn't so long ago that we were debating a bill that you may remember John Kerry was opposed to, that was going to put armor on these forces' vehicles, and you know, body armor and so on.