Do you feel safe
Somewhere, John Kerry is saying "I told you so."
Democrats in Congress almost daily blame their GOP counterparts for security holes in the U.S. maritime industry.So tell me again why the Republicans are better at protecting us when it comes to national security?
They trot out votes that show the Republican-controlled House and Senate turned back more than a dozen Democratic efforts to secure millions of dollars more for port security since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
''When it comes to protecting the ports, Republicans really do have a pre-9/11 mind-set,'' said Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Ind.
Among the votes:
--In 2003, House Republicans, on a procedural vote, agreed to kill a Democratic amendment that would have added $250 million for port security grants to a war spending package.
--Two years later, nearly all House Republicans voted against an alternative Homeland Security authorization bill offered by Democrats that called for an additional $400 million for port security.
--Senate Republicans stood together in 2003 to set aside a Democratic amendment that would have provided $120 million more for port cargo screening equipment.
--One year later, all but six Senate Republicans voted to reject a Democratic attempt to add $150 million for port security in a Homeland Security appropriations bill.
That ''record of failure'' presents ''an important opportunity for Democrats to argue that they are the ones who have the right approach to protecting the country,'' maintains Geoff Garin, a Democratic pollster.
House Republicans were put on record again last week on port security when Democrats tried to force a debate and vote on legislation that would require congressional approval of DP World's takeover. The effort failed. Only two Republicans voted with Democrats.