Friday, March 23, 2007

it is so on

The US House of Representatives just passed the Democratic Leadership-endorsed supplemental appropriations bill by a vote of 218 to 212. A sample of headlines and leads shows us why this not a hollow victory.

House Passes Timetable for Troop Pullout in Iraq
Bill Promptly Draws Veto Threat from President Bush

By William Branigin
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, March 23, 2007; 2:24 PM

The House of Representatives today passed a $124 billion emergency spending bill that sets binding benchmarks for progress in Iraq, establishes tough readiness standards for deploying U.S. troops abroad and requires the withdrawal of American combat forces from Iraq by the end of August 2008.

The bill promptly drew a veto threat from President Bush.
. . . .

Bush Slams Democrats Over Iraq Timetable

The Associated Press
Friday, March 23, 2007; 2:10 PM

WASHINGTON -- A sharply divided House voted Friday to order President Bush to bring combat troops home from Iraq next year, a victory for Democrats in an epic war-powers struggle and Congress' boldest challenge yet to the administration's policy.
. . . .

House seeks to force Iraq troop withdrawal
By Johanna Neuman, LA Times Staff Writer
10:07 AM PDT, March 23, 2007

WASHINGTON -- The House of Representatives took the historic step today of passing a bill that seeks to force the White House to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq by August 2008.
. . . .

US House votes for Iraq deadline

The House of Representatives has voted in favour of ordering President George W Bush to pull US troops out of Iraq.

The bill links $124bn (£62bn) funding for the war to a 31 August 2008 deadline for the withdrawal of all US combat troops.

It was passed by 218 votes to 212 by the Democratic-controlled House. Correspondents say it is the boldest challenge yet to Mr Bush's strategy.

Would I have liked a tougher bill with real deadlines? Sure. Do I want this war over a lot sooner than 18 months from now? You bet! But, if I may paraphrase a famous idiot, you stop a war with the Congress you have, not the Congress you wish you had.

Yes, I think the leadership should have whipped the Blue Dogs and gone for a real and present drawdown, but the fact is that bill would have been vetoed by the President just like this one will be, and the danger was that if the tougher bill failed to pass, the establishment media would have screamed, “Democrats in Disarray!”

With this bill, we have reports of a Democratic victory, and the firming up of a crucial dialectic: Democrats want to end this war—Republicans do not.

‘Nuff said—but I’ll say one more thing: doesn’t it feel good to play offense again?


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