The day after Senator John Kerry's (D-MA) acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention, FOX News Channel host John Gibson, during the closing "My Word" segment of Big Story, wondered if "it could be that the left end up being the most angered by Kerry" -- a suggestion he supported by misstating the Democratic Party Platform.
From the July 30 edition of FOX News Channel's The Big Story with John Gibson:
GIBSON: Here's the deal: The Democratic Party is anti-war. It got its base all energized and excited during the primary season being anti-war. ... But the problem is, Kerry is pro-war. He gave a war speech. He said he's tough -- strength, strong, remember all that? ... This may be good for a bunch of swing voters who actually support the right reasons for the war and don't want to go backwards and who may be upset with how [President] George W. Bush has been handling things, but it can't be good for Kerry's core supporters. ... They are the people who wrote the Dem platform: It says, "no war."
Had Gibson looked at the Democratic Party Platform (pdf) before making his false claim that "the Dem platform ... says, 'No war,'" he would have seen that, in fact, the Platform emphasizes the need for force in the struggle against terrorism and the importance of achieving stability in Iraq.
In its chapter titled "Defeating Terrorism," the Platform declares, "This war isn't just a manhunt. We cannot rest until Osama bin Laden is captured or killed, but that day will mark only a victory in the war on terror, not its end." Regarding the war in Iraq, the Platform notes, "People of good will disagree about whether America should have gone to war in Iraq, but this much is clear: this Administration badly exaggerated its case, particularly with respect to weapons of mass destruction and the connection between Saddam's government and al Qaeda."
The Platform continues: "We cannot allow a failed state in Iraq that inevitably would become a haven for terrorists and a destabilizing force in the Middle East" -- an affirmation of Kerry's own position on the issue.
Finally, the Platform further disproves Gibson's characterization by delineating the Democratic Party's position that the United States "should never wait to act until we have no other choice but war": "As Democrats and Americans, we yield to no one in our commitment to do everything necessary to win the war on terror. But we can and must win that war without sacrificing the values we are defending. America must be strong and free."
- 2004 Elections