When it comes to the war in Iraq Colonel Mike Weaver thinks its time for someone with combat experience to represent the Second Congressional District. Weaver started his military career when he was seventeen, eventually rising as high as Colonel. Weaver says the President was mistaken when he thought the war was over after Saddam Hussein's capture.
"And the plan we had for taking Saddam Hussein out was a brilliant plan, and it worked. But when President Bush stood on the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln with a banner behind him that said mission accomplished I think its sad they thought that that's what had happened." Said Weaver
Representative Ron Lewis does not have the military experience of Weaver. He did try enlisting in the Navy, but was honorably discharged because of a medical condition. Lewis believes the United States is accomplishing a very different mission in Iraq and that's why the US needs to stay.
"There are problems, yes, the terrorists, the Resistance, probably the old Saddam Hussein guard, the Sunni's, um, are a problem, there are no doubts about that. The fact is, there's been three elections, the Iraqi people have participated in. They have a constitution they, they have a duely elected government and they're doing their best to get on their feet so they can be a free democratic society." Said Lewis
The two politicians also have different ideas about what the future involvement of the United States should be in Iraq.
"I think we have to set some type of time-line for us to start moving our conventional forces out of Iraq after we have trained up the Iraqi army to take it over and I think their has to be a time-line with that, because if we don't establish a time-line then the Iraqi army has an indefinate blank check." Said Weaver
"I think its certainly worth the effort from the stand point that we're fighting terrorism there. And my biggest concern is, if we fail in Iraq, if we withdrawl, the term cut and run, uh, from Iraq, from Afghanistan, we're going to put our country at a great danger.
During a press conference at the White House Wednesday, President Bush told reporters the stakes in Iraq are high. Bush says quote- by helping the Iraqis build a democracy -- an Iraqi-style democracy -- we will deal a major blow to terrorists and extremists, we'll bring hope to a troubled region, and we'll make this country more secure.