WASHINGTON (AP) -- Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton on Wednesday accused Republicans of "playing the fear card" of terrorism to win elections and said Democrats cannot keep quiet if they want to win in November.
The New York Democrat, facing re-election this year and considered a potential White House candidate in 2008, said Republicans won the past two elections on the issue of national security and "they're doing it to us again."
She said a speech by presidential adviser Karl Rove two weeks ago showed the GOP election message is: "All we've got is fear and we're going to keep playing the fear card."
In that speech, Rove suggested Republicans can prevail in 2006 by showing Democrats had undermined terrorism-fighting efforts by questioning Bush's authority to allow wiretapping without getting court approval first.
War management questioned
Clinton said a convention of United Auto Workers that Democrats should not be afraid to question Bush's handling of the war.
"I take a back seat to nobody when it comes to fighting terrorism and standing up for national homeland security," she said.
Referring to fugitive al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, Clinton said, "You cannot explain to me why we have not captured or killed the tallest man in Afghanistan."