GIGOT: But this key point here of war, it gets down to a fundamental difference of foreign policy, whether or not President Obama's policy towards Iran, four years of diplomacy, four years of trying to coax them into ...
GIGOT: ... into a discussion quid pro quo, we'll give you something if you stop pursuing a nuclear weapon, hasn't worked. Has that taken us closer to war or further away?
STEPHENS: Yes, because it -- because it's persuaded the Iranians that they are going to be able to tiptoe across the nuclear threshold while Israel and Jerusalem and Washington are squabbling with one another over, you know, what the precise red line is. You know, a philosopher that some people in the Obama administration might like a lot, Leon Trotsky, once said, you may not be interested in war, but war is interested in you. We may not be interested in going to war with Iranians, but the Iranians may be interested in going to war with us.
GIGOT: You could make a case, Matt, that if Mitt Romney is elected, he -- the last thing he is going to want to do is get into a military conflict, because most new presidents are really focused on domestic agenda, because they have to be, because that's really what makes or breaks them.
KAMINSKI: And that is actually what he is running on, obviously. But I think, you know, I think, you know, I think, you know, Iran is obviously something down the road, but there's a problem right now in Syria, our abdication of any leadership on Syria, that war completely spiraled out of control. It's now spilling over into Lebanon, it's also spilling over into Iraq, which we have completely abandoned. So, I think, if Mitt Romney does get through this, he will be facing a very dangerous world.
GIGOT: What should Romney say in response to President Obama's taunt -- and it's really a taunt -- that he is a warmonger?
HENNINGER: I would -- personally, I would regard that as a virtually infantile remark by someone running for the presidency of the United States, suggesting that your opponent is going to start a war when there is no evidence whatsoever of that. And, you know, let me just give you one example, Paul. This was U.N. week, all the world leaders were here, the President of France Bernard (sic) Hollande said we cannot just stand by while terrorists take over Mali, Northern Africa ...
HENNING: Mali. Which has been under assault by Islamic extremists. In his "60 Minutes" interview, Barack Obama said, I think that the Middle East and Northern Africa are moving towards an area of peace and prosperity. And they'll be allying with us. He has stuck his head in the sand of the Middle East.
GIGOT: All right, gentlemen. Coming up, we turn from the presidential campaign to the battle for control of the Senate and the fierce fight being waged in Massachusetts. Can Scott Brown hold on to Ted Kennedy's old seat or Will Elizabeth Warren return it to the Democratic hold?
GIGOT: Turning now from the presidential campaign to the battle for control of the United States Senate where Republicans hope to overcome the Democrats 53 to 47 seat majority. This week we look at the race in Massachusetts. There Republican Senator Scott Brown is running to hold on to the seat once held by liberal icon Ted Kennedy. It's one Democrats would sorely like to take back. And are hoping Elizabeth Warren, the brains behind President Obama's Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is the candidate who can do that. We're back with Dan Henninger and Dorothy Rabinowitz and the Wall Street Journal editorial board member, Mary Kissel. So, Mary, very rare for a Republican to hold the Senate seat in Massachusetts. Brown won in 2010 under special election. What is he doing? What is his strategy to hold on to that seat?
MARY KISSEL, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: No, he is positioning himself as an independent, as a person who is going to represent every person in Massachusetts. And he is also calling out Elizabeth Warren on her hypocrisy, which is, you saw it when she called herself a native American, in which the "Boston Herald" also revealed this week that she has represented big companies trying to deny payments to retirees. The bankrupt steel company and also Travelers Insurance. So, this sort of goes at the heart of what Elizabeth Warren says she is for.
GIGOT: So underlying her authenticity.
KISSEL: And I'm just ...
GIGOT: Claims about authenticity as a populist ...
KISSEL: Right. Not just the authenticity, but that she understands the plight of the common person.
GIGOT: We have got back-to-back ads here, first by Scott Brown and then followed by Elizabeth Warren. Let's look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Elizabeth Warren is trying to put questions about her heritage behind her.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Warren admitted to identifying herself as Native American to employers something now genealogists have said they have zero evidence of.
She is facing tough questions about whether she claimed to be a minority for professional gain.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Warren did give an answer. The problem is, it keeps changing.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is there anything that is going to come out about you that we don't already know?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You know, I don't think so, but who knows.
ELIZABETH WARREN: As I kid I never asked my mom for documentation when she talked about our Native American heritage, what kid would? But I knew my father's family didn't like that she was part Cherokee and part Delaware. So, my parents had to elope. Let me be clear, I never asked for or never got any benefit because of my heritage. The people who hired me have all said they didn't even know about it. I'm Elizabeth Warren, I approve this message. Scott Brown can continue attacking my family, but I'm going to keep fighting for yours.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GIGOT: So, Dorothy, who's got -- who got the best of that exchange?
DOROTHY RABINOWITZ, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Scott brown did. But she's come out with this pretense that her family is under attack. But one of the thing about this is, that Scott Brown said something that, look at her, you know. You can say she is not a Native American or close to that, and he came under attack with the question of how can you tell anybody's heritage from their face? Well, let me tell you the first thing that Elizabeth Warren said when all this came up about Harvard, was I have high cheekbones. I've always had high cheekbones. You know high cheekbones.
GIGOT: Don't know them, Dorothy, I don't.
RABINOWITZ: Well, but she could think that you got a look at your heritage from the cheekbones -- what the point is? This is a person who has transformed herself from this raging class warrior ...
RABINOWITZ: You saw at the convention, who is talking about the system is rigged against you. Wall Streeters are walking around there, shamelessly and -- to this rather shrinking violet until Scott Brown got her virtually out of the gate at that debate with her character.
GIGOT: Right. OK. So, Scott Brown, who does he need to appeal to? Who is he trying to get the votes of? Because Democrats have a basically three to one registration edge in the state. Although 51 percent of Independents -- voters are independent.
KISSEL: That's right. He has to win independents. And if the president has a big surge close to election day that's going to be tough in a state that's predominantly independent and where Democrats have such an edge. Dorothy, though, referred to the debate, it was a very revealing exchange in that debate where Scott Brown essentially explained what this populist agenda that Elizabeth Warren is pushing would mean to the average voter. He talked that -- she challenged him on jobs bill that Scott Brown didn't sign on to. And Brown said, it would have raised your taxes, $450 billion, it was a bipartisan rejection. And the professor, as he called her, responded well, it would just be a fractional tax on people making more than a million dollars a year. And they had this very revealing exchange about the cost to the average voter.
HENNINGER: Well, let's get into some political detail here. Scott Brown bit Martha Coakley, a formidable Democrat, by 107,000 votes in 2010. How did he do that? He did that by winning the central part of the state and southern state and the northeastern part of the state, Boston is totally Democratic except for south Boston where these white blue color Irish unionized workers live. Those people supported Scott Brown. Now, the mayor of Boston, Thomas Menino, has endorsed Elizabeth Warren, he said he is going to send his political machine into south Boston.
GIGOT: Like Democrat.
HENNINGER: And Richard Trumka, the head of the AFL-CIO has been touring those neighborhoods pleading with the guys not to vote against Elizabeth Warren. And I think that is where the battleground is going to be. Right there.