I don’t dispute this, except for the adverb “way”. Based on the total of his writings and oral statements over the past 20 years, I’d say his commitment to design is about 99%, and his commitment to common descent is about 90%. It appeared to me that you were underestimating his conception of the strength of the evidence for common descent.
See the statement by Paul Nelson (who knows Behe’s position as well as anyone), quoted by Neil Rickert below. I had not seen that statement until about two days ago, but it didn’t surprise me at all, as everything I have read since 2005 by Behe and about Behe (from his Discovery colleagues) is consistent with Nelson’s statement. And here, quite recently, Ann Gauger appears to have confirmed that Behe accepts common descent.
I grant you that Behe doesn’t dogmatize about common descent. He doesn’t make over-the-top statements such as those we often see on the internet in these debates, e.g., “common descent is as certain as the law of gravity or the germ theory of disease.” He is aware that there is some data that could be read as incompatible with common descent – the sort of data that Nelson and others point out. Not being a dogmatic sort of person by nature, he gives room for people to dissent re common descent. But he himself takes it as as his working hypothesis, i.e., he assumes it to be true until significant counter-evidence comes up.
Whether Behe affirms universal common descent (all life springing from one progenitor) is not as clear. Darwin gave the option of one or a few original forms. I think Behe is comfortable with that level of uncertainty. But Paul Nelson’s statement indicates that Behe goes all the way to one ancestor. Ann Gauger, on the other hand, in a recent statement here, backed away from insisting that Behe holds to UCD, after initially suggesting that he held to it. She does not seem as sure as Nelson regarding Behe’s view on a single common ancestor. So among those who know Behe best, there is uncertainty on whether he holds to a single ancestor, or multiple ancestors. But no ID leader I know of doubts that Behe takes common descent very far. Indeed, based on statements of his that I’ve read, he thinks that human beings, at least on the bodily side (leaving out the immortal soul) go back to one-celled antecedents, and if one goes that far, one clearly has broken with all forms of American “creationism”, even if one supposes that there were originally 30 or 40 distinct one-celled starting-points.
Of course, Behe doesn’t think this evolution could have happened without design somewhere in the process, either at the beginning, or inserted at points along the way. Where I find him non-committal is on the point where the design comes into the process. He gives the pool-shot analogy as a possibility, but elsewhere he clearly allows special interventions (tinkering with mutations subtly, for example) as a possibility. I think that he doesn’t dwell in the exact scenario for “design insertion” because to him it doesn’t come into the methods for detecting design. For him, just as you can show that something like Stonehenge or a pocket watch was designed without knowing exactly the steps by which the thing was made, so you can show that certain living systems are designed without knowing exactly where the design was inserted (at the Big Bang, at the start of life, or later on).