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Weekend Reading for Arnold and Joe

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If I may, I'd like to recommend a little weekend reading for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Time's Joe Klein: Richard Cohen's spot-on column "The Explanation Hillary Clinton Owes" about Hillary's refusal to say she made a mistake by voting for the Iraq war.

"Instead of Clinton saying she had been misled by Bush and his merry band of fibbers, exaggerators and hallucinators," writes Cohen, "I'd like to hear an explanation of how she thinks she went wrong and what she learned from it. I don't want to know how Bush failed her. I want to know how she failed her country."

In an interview with Roger Simon posted today on Politico, Schwarzenegger says Democrats should lay off Hillary:

Schwarzenegger said that while he believes politicians should be honest about admitting their mistakes, "people are too tied down with analyzing" whether Hillary Clinton's vote to authorize the Iraq war was a mistake or not.

"Is that what makes the country operate well, if she becomes president?" he asked. "How you twist that or spin that?... You've got to judge people not by this one little thing."

'One little thing', Governor? Simon says you are "no longer on painkillers" but perhaps there is some residual dulling.

As for Klein, in his otherwise insightful column, he makes the staggering claim that "Most voters don't care if Hillary Clinton says 'I was wrong' about Iraq. They know she was wrong and they sense she regrets it."

Sure, why should she admit she was wrong -- and explain whether she came to that decision, as Cohen puts it, "after excruciating thought" or by merely putting her "finger in the wind" -- when we can see it in her eyes, or the twitch of her lips?

Klein also says "there are about 873 people on the left edge of the Democratic Party, plus assorted anti-Clinton consultant trolls like [Dick] Morris, who want to torment her over this."

You must not be spending much time on the campaign trail, Joe. Everywhere Hillary goes people want to know about her Iraq vote, echoing the words of one Iowan quoted in the New York Times: "People like somebody to admit when they were wrong." (And, Joe, I see you are still obsessed with "the left." C'mon, it's 2007. Left/right is so tired it can't stand up straight.)