Tapper presses 2020 Democrat Seth Moulton over 'cop out' on Biden's Iraq War vote

CNN host Jake TapperJacob (Jake) Paul TapperMurphy: No concerns with Sanders on gun policy Dean says he's not worried Sanders would harm down-ballot Democratic candidates Democrats ramp up attacks on opponents in final pitch before New Hampshire MORE pressed Rep. Seth MoultonSeth MoultonTrump set to confront his impeachment foes Biden lines up high-profile surrogates to campaign in Iowa The DCCC's 'blacklist' protects a white male political status quo MORE (D-Mass.), a 2020 White House hopeful, on Sunday on whether he thought then-Sen. Joe BidenJoe BidenButtigieg campaign claims 'irregularities' in Nevada caucuses Poll: Sanders leads 2020 Democratic field with 28 percent, followed by Warren and Biden More than 6 in 10 expect Trump to be reelected: poll MORE's vote for the Iraq War was good or not, calling Moulton's response a "cop out."

"You fought in Iraq even though intellectually you opposed the war. Joe Biden was in the Senate at the time, he voted to go to war in Iraq, was that a mistake?" Tapper asked during the network's "State of the Union," referring to the former vice president who is also seeking the Democratic presidential nomination.

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"I have a lot of respect for Joe Biden, he's a mentor and a friend, but I do think that it's time for the generation that fought in Iraq and Afghanistan to step in," Moulton initially responded.

"But was it a mistake for him to vote to go to war in Iraq?" Tapper asked again.

"Well, I wasn't in the Senate at the time so I'm not going to say that, but," Moulton began to answer before Tapper cut him off.

"I'm sorry, but that's a cop out. You were in the front lines, you have more of a right to make a judgement about that vote than anyone I've interviewed who is running for president," Tapper said.

"OK, fair," Moulton relented, "It was a mistake, because we should have been a lot more careful about going into Iraq, we should have questioned the intelligence."

Some Democrats have pointed to Biden's vote for the Iraq War in 2002 as a reason he may not be liberal enough to win the primary, given the party's leftward shift since then.

Biden is leading the Democratic field, averaging 35 percent support in recent polling, according to RealClearPolitics. Moulton averages 0.2 percent support.