Friday, February 16, 2007


Rep. Don Young, a Republican congressman from Alaska, evoked Abraham Lincoln to justify the arrest, exile or hanging of elected officials who oppose President Bush's call for a troop escalation in Iraq:
"Congressmen who willfully take actions during wartime that damage morale and undermine the military are saboteurs and should be arrested, exiled, or hanged."
The Lincoln quote wasn't from Lincoln. Young's mouthpiece said "so sorry" on Friday but added that the congressman still agrees with the sentiment.

A real Lincoln quote about presidents waging war without congressional oversight comes from 1846. Lincoln was in Congress, arguing against President James Polk's war with Mexico:
"The provision of the Constitution giving the war-making power to Congress, was dictated, as I understand it, by the following reasons: Kings had always been involving and impoverishing their people in wars, pretending generally, if not always, that the good of the people was the object. This, our Convention understood to be the most oppressive of all Kingly oppressions; and they resolved to so frame the Constitution that no one man should hold the power of bringing this oppression upon us."
Lincoln: Freed the slaves, kept the Union together, predicted the future.

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