In his 2006 book, The One-Percent Doctrine," author Ron Suskind describes Vice President Dick Cheney's approach to fighting terrorism: Quoting from Suskind:
"If there's a one-percent chance that Pakistani scientists are helping al-Qaeda build or develop a nuclear weapon, we have to treat it as a certainty in terms of our response," Cheney said. He paused to assess his declaration. "It's not about our analysis, or finding a preponderance of evidence," he added. "It's about our response." (p. 62)
The right cheered Cheney's approach. He was keeping us safe, they said, and cost is no object in the quest to keep ussafe. And he was going after bad guys -- "fighting them there so we don't have to fight them here." That he was perhaps going after the wrong bad guys was immaterial.
The left was more cautious. Going after bad guys was good, but they had to be the right bad guys. Efforts to keep us safe could not result in a police state that trampled basic liberties and the constitutional protections every citizen deserves. And cost is an issue: you can't realistically wage two foreign wars while cutting taxes and not expect the deficit to spiral out of control.