Republican Sen. Gordon Smith of Oregon seemed to take Ann Coulter’s post 9-11 advice to in Invade Arab countries, “kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity” serious.
According to a leaked video by the Las Vegas Review Journal, the Sen. is seen telling Mormon church leaders that he had an ulterior motive for voting in favor of the war in Iraq back in 2002.
“I know and have been a critic of the Iraq war, but I also admit to you that I voted for it because I felt the Lord’s hand in it,” Smith said. “I hope it works out, but I can promise you this: You’ll never send missionaries to the Arab street until the rule of law exists in Arabia, and it has taken root in Iraq. And ultimately, if that succeeds, there will be an opportunity to begin building the church in the Middle East, which is a deeply troubled place.”
In his defense, Smith was also one of the few Republicans that publicly voiced their discontent of the Bush administration’s handeling of the Iraq war early on, and also supported a resolution in 2007 whose purpose was to withdraw troops from Iraq.
However, the fact that his support for the war was based on the rationale that Mormonism can take root in the Middle East, may have lessened his chances of holding political office in the future.