Monday, March 12, 2007

Democrats Confront The President On War Power Kinda Give Up

That's some real bold leadership there, Madame Speaker...

AP: Dems abandon war authority provision
Top House Democrats retreated Monday from an attempt to limit President Bush's authority for taking military action against Iran as the leadership concentrated on a looming confrontation with the White House over the Iraq war.

Officials said Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other members of the leadership had decided to strip from a major military spending bill a requirement for Bush to gain approval from Congress before moving against Iran.

Conservative Democrats as well as lawmakers concerned about the possible impact on Israel had argued for the change in strategy.

The developments occurred as Democrats pointed toward an initial test vote in the House Appropriations Committee on Thursday on the overall bill, which would require the withdrawal of U.S. combat troops from Iraq by Sept. 1, 2008, if not earlier...

C'mon our friendly neighborhood Democrats, you guys are the majority now, act like it. Yes, yes, you have the Republicans waiting to sabotage every breath you take and the odds that the President will veto most of what you pass, but that doesn't mean that you fold. Sometimes real leadership is fighting for the right cause, even when you know you're destined to lose in the short term... because in the long-term, you may just win.

And frankly it's intellectual laziness to cave on this provision under the myth that it would be a sign of weakness against Iran, or whatever the self-believed tough guys in your ranks said. The point was that the White House has hinted it believes it can attack Iran without congressional approval and you needed to assure him that he cannot start a third war by his own decree. If (and hopefully not when) the President would ever expand the war in Iran, at least you could say you tried to stop him. But now, you just said 'whatever' in hopes that it won't come down to that. But it may.

Maybe the GOP keeps watering down your work because you let them. Food for thought.

(And, yes, Israel may have cause for concern, but last time I checked, they are a nuclear power with their own well-trained military. We saw it in action just this past summer. Remember all that fun? If they feel threatened, I think they are big boys, quite capable of handling things themselves. And, I'm sorry, but if we really cared for security in that area, we'd actually snap out of our stupor and try and solve that Israel-Palestine situation, which is, you know, at the heart of all this. Some additional food/dessert for thought.)

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