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Monday, December 3, 2007

Karl Rove defended his recent assertion that Democrats in Congress pushed the country to war with Iraq faster than the White House wanted.

"The general conventional wisdom is that the president was the only person pushing the Congress to vote on the war resolution before the November election," said Rove, a former senior Bush administration aide, on "Fox News Sunday." "And that's simply not true. [Former Senate majority leader] Tom Daschle in June [of 2002] said there's broad support for regime change in Iraq."

Rep. Chris Van Hollen (Md.), chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, on the same show cited a Washington Post report that quoted former Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer as saying it was "definitely" the administration that "set . . . in motion and determined the timing" of the war resolution.

Rove, however, said Fleischer was "not aware of and was not privileged" to all the information he needed to make the most accurate assessment.

HUCKABEE ON IMMIGRATION: With a poll showing that he leads the GOP contest in Iowa, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee appeared on ABC's "This Week."

He was asked several questions about his support for a college tuition discount for the children of illegal immigrants, as long as they graduated from Arkansas high schools -- a benefit enjoyed by the state's citizens.

"I don't support special benefits. I support a secure border. I don't support the idea of sanctuary cities. I don't support amnesty," Huckabee said. "What I do support . . . is the humane treatment of human beings."

He characterized the Arkansas plan as allowing immigrants' children to qualify for "a meritorious scholarship based on their grade-point average, their being drug- and alcohol-free," saying, "You don't punish a child because a parent committed a crime or committed a sin."

Huckabee, an evangelical Christian and a pastor, was also asked whether former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, a GOP rival who is a Mormon, is a Christian.

"Mitt Romney has to answer that. Nobody can answer for another person," he said.

By Zachary A. Goldfarb


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