Friday, March 16, 2007

Senate Republicans stand firm and block the Democrats attempt to force troop withdrawal

The only Republican that broke ranks and voted with the Dems was Sen. Gordon Smith of Oregon.

WASHINGTON, March 15 — The Senate on Thursday rejected a Democratic resolution to withdraw most American combat troops from Iraq in 2008, but a similar measure advanced in the House, and Democratic leaders vowed to keep challenging President Bush to change course in Iraq.

Go to Complete Coverage » The vote in the Senate was 50 against and 48 in favor, 12 short of what was needed to pass, with just a few defections in each party. It came just hours after the House Appropriations Committee, in another vote largely on party lines, approved an emergency spending bill for Iraq and Afghanistan that includes a timeline for withdrawal from Iraq. The House will vote on that legislation next Thursday, setting the stage for another confrontation.

[...] The Democratic resolution in the Senate would have redefined the United States mission in Iraq and set a goal of withdrawing American combat troops by March 31, 2008, except for a “limited number” focused on counterterrorism, training and equipping Iraqi forces, and protecting American and allied personnel. The House measure set a withdrawal deadline of Sept. 1, 2008.

Good work Senate Republicans blocking the Democrats proposal. Setting a set date for withdrawal is like giving the terrorists a date after which they can do whatever they want. It's like Aussie Prime Minister Howard had said about a possible presidential Democratic victory in '08: "If I were running al-Qaeda in Iraq, I would put a circle around March, 2008, and pray as many times as possible for a victory, not only for Obama, but also for the Democrats." Whatever date we set for withdrawal, I'm sure the terrorists' calendar would have a big circle around that date.

But cheer up Democrats. Your party finally did a couple things right. They finally had an original idea, and they actually tried to enact policy based on that idea. Sure it was about as wrong an idea as they could have possibly come up with, but at least it's more than the pointless anti-Bush blather that they usually rely on.

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