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View Diary: Iraq accountability: November and March (157 comments)

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  •  agreeed, though I worry about the particulars (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SarahLee, sherlyle

    I absolutely agree that Democrats must be firm about a withdrawal date. But I worry about the particulars of a strategy, particularly since it appears unlikely that the veto can be overridden at this time. I would prefer to avoid a scenario that leaves troops in Iraq with no money to pay for their being there.

    •  Democrats promised both things (14+ / 0-)

      funding the withdrawal is supporting our troops.

      Can I imagine for one second Jon Tester, Jim Webb or Claire McCaskill creating the scenario you envision?  No. Not going to happen.

      Politics means being able to strategize the legislative process far enough down the road to deliver on your promises.

      The Democratic Party promised to support and fund the troops (and in ways the GOP failed to do).  We also promised the voters to "bring them home."

      I think the problem here is George W. Bush, his veto, and GOP congresscritters who are STILL giving George Bush a blank check to break his word.

      k/o: politics and culture

      by kid oakland on Tue May 01, 2007 at 02:08:54 PM PDT

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      •  Agreed (6+ / 0-)

        And, frankly, they should try to override his veto and, failing that, send the same bill right back to him.

        The funding bill as written is already a sensible compromise position that delivers on both aspects you mention. The majority of American agree with that position and its time to force Bush's hand.

        Also, from a purely political perspective, sending the same bill back to Bush is a chance for Dems to break out of the media-created narrative. The talking heads have been phoning this story in along a basic narrative which says, "Yeah, Dems will pass a bill, Bush will veto it, they don't have the votes to overcome the veto, so they will cave and give Bush what he wants".

        Reid and Pelosi have the chance to break that narrative and show some toughness to the American people by 1) getting every Republican in Congress on the record for backing Bush's accountability-free nightmare, and 2) by standing firm and sending the same bill right back.

        Of course the Broders and Liebermans of the world will scream and cry about how "extreme" Dem are being, should they actually do that, but when the dust settles the American people will still be at our backs.

        Those who begin coercive elimination of dissent soon find themselves exterminating dissenters. --Justice Robert H. Jackson

        by kingubu on Tue May 01, 2007 at 03:42:12 PM PDT

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        •  I don't agree. Trying to overrride ... (12+ / 0-)

          ...the soon-to-be-vetoed bill changes the media theme to a Democratic defeat - something the veto by itself isn't. A two-month supplemental, with no-waiver training-resting-equipping provisions and the withdrawal elements of Feingold-Reid is the best approach post-veto.

          •  one reason I like the short-leash approach (9+ / 0-)

            it forces Bush to keep asking, and forces the Republicans to keep voting.  Forget about formal benchmarks - the news will give us all we want.

            And if we do 2 month cycles, the timing of the next might be coming up just as the Iraqi government is planning to go on break.  Now, I wonder how that might play even in the socalled MSM

            I would, however, insist on something else.  Pass a peace of legislation now that says the budget for FY2008 MUST INCLUDE all anticipated military spending in order to present an honest picture to the American public.  Now, how many conservative REpublicans want to be on record voting against fiscal honesty?  Just wondering...

            and if this were timed to be in conjunction with the next renewal of a 2 month supplemental, it would really hold Republican  feet to the fire, and might well lead to getting a sufficient coalition to override a veto.

            Just saying.

            Those who can, do. Those who can do more, TEACH!

            by teacherken on Tue May 01, 2007 at 04:00:52 PM PDT

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          •  Win by losing (6+ / 0-)

            A durable majority of Americans support the timetables in the current bill, when they don't get that they will look for someone to blame. By not taking every chance to get it through, Dems open themselves up the sharing that blame ("Jesus, they didn't even try to override that Bush"). If the veto-override fails along strictly partisan lines it lumps every GOP congressperson who votes against it in with Bush and his dead-ender policy and all the blame goes one way.

            Its true that the talking heads will do what they always do and try to paint this as Dem weakness, but they are going to do that either way.

            We either lose sticking to our guns and going down in the override vote or lose by avoiding the fight. I say the latter is the "better loss" given populate support.

            Those who begin coercive elimination of dissent soon find themselves exterminating dissenters. --Justice Robert H. Jackson

            by kingubu on Tue May 01, 2007 at 04:06:20 PM PDT

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      •  Importantly, they should not negotiate with (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        conchita, kaye, AmericanRiverCanyon

        Bush at any point.  The key is to drive a wedge between him and his Republican enablers in Congress.

      •  If necessary fund troops on short leash (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kid oakland, conchita, pioneer111

        I would prefer to avoid a scenario that leaves troops in Iraq with no money to pay for their being there.

        No. Not going to happen.

        Politics means being able to strategize the legislative process far enough down the road to deliver on your promises.

        The Democratic Party promised to support and fund the troops (and in ways the GOP failed to do).  We also promised the voters to "bring them home."

        I think that we need to consider the "short leash" tactic.  Obama suggested 3 months at a pop and tonight Murtha suggested 2 months.  If Murtha thinks he could craft a 2 month bill that would force another vote and then another without hurting the troops I would be willing to give it a try.  Where is it written that Bush has to get his allowance in such big chunks?

        BTW Murtha broke new ground by having something other than praise for General Petraeus.  He said that he is acting in a political way to support the White House and didn't even bother talking to the committees that were supplying the funds for his surge. 

        Murtha  said that he did not think that the big enemy in Iraq was al Qaeda and when it was put to him that General Petraeus had just said it was so he dismissed that as just more political speechmaking.  He pointed that the General was doing what the President had asked him to do which was to act in a political way.

        I had thought that there was some sort of rule against saying anything bad about General Petraeus but it looks like no one told Rep. Murtha.

    •  That won't happen. (0+ / 0-)

      Meaning if there's no money for the troops and it translates to no more ammo or water, don't worry -- they won't stick around, curl up and die; to the extent they can, they'll be taking their Humvees to the nearest border.  They'd be crazy not to.

      Bush doesn't listen to anyone but the competing voices in his head. The winner he calls "God" and runs with it.

      by dov12348 on Tue May 01, 2007 at 03:42:11 PM PDT

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    •  Keep the firm withdrawal date, and limit (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Meteor Blades, SarahLee, Pithy Cherub

      funding to 2-3 months at a time.  Forces Bush to account for money spent, progress (or lack of) accomplished, and cuts short any sense that we're not funding the troops.  Cuts his talking points off at the knees, this way.

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