Democrats Offer Negative Report Card on Petraeus

Even before the top U.S. commander in Iraq, Gen. David Petraeus, delivers his report to Congress, Democrats appearing on the Sunday talk shows delivered their report card on him.

Sen. Joe Biden on NBC's "Meet the Press": "I think he's dead, flat wrong."

Sen. John Kerry on ABC's "This Week": "None of us should be fooled — not the American people, not you in the media, not us in Congress."

Sen. Edward Kennedy on CBS' "Face the Nation": "It looks like Gen. Petraeus is going to ask for six more months. And it's clear that this administration is trying to delay the ultimate judgment until the next president gets into office."

In a new ABC News-Washington Post poll, 53 percent of Americans think Petraeus will try and make things look better than they really are. Only 39 percent believe his report will honestly reflect the situation.

A new ad from the liberal group MoveOn.org slams the general: "Before Congress and the American people, Gen. Petraeus is likely to become Gen. Betray Us."

Cheap shot, according to Sen. John McCain, after ABC's George Stephanopoulos read the ad to him.

"If we have to sink to that level to besmirch the reputation of a very fine and wonderful American, then I lament the level of dialogue," said McCain. "I hope that my Democrat friends will not be guided by MoveOn.org."

This weekend, veterans at the American Legion Post in Doylestown, Pa., asked their congressman, Patrick Murphy, what he will ask Petraeus at Monday's Capitol Hill hearing. Murphy, a Democrat, wants to withdraw most troops from Iraq and send some to Afghanistan.

He told the veterans, "I'm going to ask Gen. Petraeus, you know, 'Is Osama bin Laden in Iraq?' He's going to say no. I'm going to ask Gen. Petraeus, 'Isn't our focus, shouldn't it be on what the intelligence community and everyone else say: Al Qaeda is strongest by a long shot in Afghanistan and the border of Pakistan?'"

Republicans outnumber Democrats in registered voters in Murphy's district. He won a close election in November because of disenchantment with the war.

Murphy is the only Iraq veteran in Congress. He once served under Petraeus and admires him. But, when ABC News asked Murphy whether the general can say anything that would change his mind, he replied, "Not from the reports that I've read."

Most of the people, in both ABC News' national poll and in interviews conducted in Murphy's district, said they doubt that this week's testimony will result in major changes.

And they may be right. So far, Democrats on Capitol Hill have failed to pick up enough Republican votes to force a change in troop levels.

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