You can say what you like about members of Congress, but they are always aware which way the wind is blowing.
Right now the wind is blowing toward President Bush and the way he won the war. The people in the most trouble are those members of Congress who voted against the president's use of armed force to teach Iraq a lesson.So the naysayers have to play catch-up for their elections. They have ordered their political managers to change their images from doves to hawks overnight.
Freddie Havemeyer, who is in charge of Sen. Hiram Whipple's campaign, was ushered into the senator's office.
Whipple said, "Were you able to kill the picture of me in an Arab headdress kissing Saddam Hussein? It was taken when I visited Iraq just before the war."
"No, sir. Your opposition is building its entire TV campaign around it. We have a difficult road to hoe. Here, try these on."
"What are they?"
"Eighty-second Airborne camouflage fa-tigues.
"OK, we've got you outfitted for the campaign pretty well. Let's discuss what you should say. Suppose they ask you why you voted against war powers for Bush?"
"I'll say that I thought I was voting against farm subsidies for Russia."
"It's weak. The reason you voted against Bush is that his demand for using our armed forces wasn't tough enough. You wanted him to promise the country that he would nuke Basra."
"At this time it would be a mistake to attack Bush personally, so you should say that once the war started you had no differences with the president. To prove it, you can hold up this picture of you and Bush shaking hands."
"That was taken in 1973."
"Nobody will know. Your job in this campaign is to attack Saddam Hussein for bringing so much misery to the world."
"What if they find out I gave him an autographed basketball from the Celtics when I went to Baghdad last year?"
"We're going to have to take a chance on that. Here's your standard speech for the campaign."
"Hey, this sounds just like the Gettysburg Address."
"What's the difference? If you've heard one war speech, you've heard them all."