“I know assault rifles. I carried one in Iraq. They have no place on America’s streets. #Orlando.”
The three sentences Congressman Seth Moulton (D-Mass.) tweeted and posted on Facebook is more than just simple, to-the-point and accurate. It’s backed by a lifetime of experience and credibility. While some politicians wring their hands, congratulate themselves for their perceptiveness or talk tough while never having served, Moulton is the real deal.
Moulton’s short political career has thus far been marked by speaking his mind no matter whose feathers get ruffled. He has bucked even President Obama when he felt it necessary. He thinks Obama’s Middle East military strategy is a mess and he has said so.
Moulton’s criticism of the Obama administration’s military efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan was triggered by personal experience and loss. He served with an Iraqi army officer who was his great friend. Iraqi Army Lieutenant Colonel Ehab Hashem Moshen was killed in an ISIS attack. Moulton let loose.
“I lost my closest friend in the Iraqi Army to ISIS and our failed policy in Iraq,” Moulton posted on Twitter. In an interview with the Boston Globe, Moulton had no problem blaming Obama and fellow Democrats for a serious policy failure. “If you ask troops on the ground, ‘Where is this all going? What’s our end game?’ . . . they can’t tell you,” said Moulton. “To build a democracy and create a stable, successful government so we could go home…I think the problem is the president just wants to be out of Iraq…I understand why he feels that way. A lot of Americans feel that way.”
Similarly, Moulton doesn’t care what other people think in the aftermath of the Orlando massacre. His short Tweet ended up on the front page of the New Daily News.
Moulton brings some serious chops to any policy debate. After graduating from Harvard with a degree in physics, he joined the Marines and served four tours in the Iraq War. Upon returning home, he earned master’s degrees in business (MBA) and public administration from Harvard, at the same time, in a duel program. Yeah, crazy smart, crazy brave and on his way to the top.
Moulton gave his first sign that he is his own man when he challenged a sitting Democratic congressman in a primary in 2014. US Rep. John Tierney had been in office since 1997. Tainted by a scandal involving his wife’s family (in which he tossed his wife in front of a proverbial speeding train), Moulton beat Tierney and then went on to win the congressional seat in deep blue Massachusetts.
From time to time I’ll throw out a thought that can be taken as a prediction. Here’s one: Seth Moulton is destined for big things including, possibly, the presidency. Of course, in politics it’s always dangerous to speak one’s mind. The thought here is that it will serve Moulton well.