Never mind that if he can't handle a little verbal abuse he shouldn't be in Congress, this is the way the elderly, socially-conservative, third-generation-union voters in his district will see it.
That district voted 49% for Bush in 2004. I don't think they'll be taking too kindly to his public proclamations of guilt and military failures.
"Congressman Murtha, how dare you, you oxygen thief, even think of smearing our great men and women in the US armed forces? No wonder the Marine corps didn't make you a general after over 35 years, you mushy headed nitwit!"
"Congressman Murtha, I am sad and disappointed that you have chosen to criticize our armed forces at this time. With your distinguished record of service, you should know full well that the fog of war distorts the circumstances of the dangerous job our courageous fighting forces are doing."
Congressman Murtha, I am sad and disappointed that you have chosen to criticize our armed forces at this time. With your distinguished record of service, it's a shame that no one has facilitated having your head injury addressed in some VA hospital.
I really don't know what you're saying here, Dude.
Are you recommending Number 1? I think it's too harsh, but toned down just a little, I'd go with it. Number 2 isn't very clear, so I don't see how it works on the "lazy voter," who certainly can't understand anything that isn't clear.
In any case, we are never better off "saying nothing." Saying nothing is the usual GOP response, and look where it's gotten us.
Of course the message has to be crafted with the dimwit voters in mind. But the stupider they are, the more important it is to communicate well, and not to "say nothing."
My little "quick course" for you.