Troop Pullout Approved Fall 2008

The house was able to do it! They found the votes to require a troop pullout by the fall of 2008.  

What I wanted to add to the conversation is that this is more than a symbolic gesture. I believe that there are training provisions (can someone tell me if this is correct) and R+R for the troops / especially those who have been re-deployed despite injuries.

Is this the case? Also, I am told that the troop measures approved today are binding - this is what the election of 2006 would be about. Would this vote, in the senate, be a good acid test? Could you find out how your senator votes on it?

I am not sure of the process. I am just happy. This war was unjust and its end will bring a blessing and a curse.

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Nancy Pelosi: The Price Of A Soul

On February 28, 2007 Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), one of the 73 members of the Out of Iraq Congressional Caucus, and member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, introduced HR 1234:a bill to immediately end the United States occupation of Iraq:
"This is the plan that will get our troops home the fastest. It is workable and achieves the goals of ending the war and enabling our troops to come home," Kucinich said.

HR 1234 is a plan for the United States to use existing money to bring the troops and necessary equipment home and transition to an international security and peacekeeping force.

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Iraq: Reid and Pelosi slam on the brakes

McClatchy (ex-Knight Ridder) have a story - in the last hour, according to Google News, that both leaderships have put their Iraq efforts on hold:

"There has not yet been a determination made by the Democratic caucus as to how we will finalize our legislative approach to this," said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. He said it would be another week or two before Senate debate on Iraq resumed.

House Democrats are no closer to decisive action, though they did pass a nonbinding resolution earlier this month opposing Bush's troop buildup in Iraq.

Brer Hoyer puts it thus:
We are in the process of choosing the least dangerous, the least negative alternative. We're not there; there's not a consensus.

Murtha defended his Proviso before the Caucus, but failed to persuade his colleagues.

Uncle Harry has the kicker:

Asked what his preference is, Reid said, "I have a preference of making sure that I have my arms around the entire caucus before I put my name on an amendment."

Shades of When you have them by the balls, their hearts and minds will follow.

Harry has had to vary the strategy - for obvious reasons.

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Iraq: reports of Dem disarray *not* greatly exaggerated?

There's a well-practiced routine whereby the lefty sphere builds up a person or policy to impossibly stratospheric levels, and, when they fail to meet the superhumanly exacting standards appropriate to their mythic status, said sphere lurches into a bout of recrimination, weeping and wailing, and general wah!.

As of the first day of the session, the appropriate, rational achievement standard for the 110th on Iraq was nothing. Zero. Zilch.

A sane and informed observer might have hoped that they'd have got through some more dough for body armor, and care of returning vets. But expecting the 110th to have any material effect on the conduct of the war - no.

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Iraq deauthorization: vote count looking bad

I've been pretty consistent in doubting that there were ever 60 votes for any binding measure on Iraq in the Senate. Probably not even 50 (a simple majority on a full vote with Johnson still on the DL).

From an untrustworthy source (they all are!) comes further gloom - though not necessarily from his viewpoint:

As Congress returns this week from the year's first recess, an amendment to repeal authorization is supposed to be attached to the bill containing homeland security recommendations by the Sept. 11 commission. But Sen. Norm Coleman, who has become prominent among Republican critics of Bush's war policy, told me from his home state of Minnesota that he would oppose deauthorization and predicted that no more than two Republican senators would vote for it.

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