Iraq kabuki: now in summer stock!

The old saying about the Jim Crow South was that, in order to keep the Negro in the gutter, the white man had to be in there with him.

Much the same, I think, with Iraq: in order for the Congressional Dems to keep the spotlight on the fubar in Iraq, they have to train said spotlight on their own impotence.

Whatever: a CQpiece today runs through some of the Iraq business to be taken during Senate floor action (starting today) on HR 1585, the defense authorization bill - S 1547 is the Senate text.

We're promised that up to two weeks - half the time left before the summer recess - will be taken up with the bill.

Various amendments are mentioned: we have Son of Murtha Proviso from Webb, for instance: rest periods of equal length to deployment periods. Hill and Warner with separate versions of IWR repeal.

And the Gang of 14 (OK, 11, but 14 soon) S 1545 text to implement the Iraq Study Group recommendations.

And more besides.

The underlying strategic point is this: Bush will veto the bill at a drop of a hat, we know. The Dems, plus renegade GOP, should have no difficulty in including said hat in the bill that passes Congress.

But - what then? The old, old story is still the story: there's only one way for the Dems to fight, and that is to refuse Bush his bill, and take the matter to the American voter.

And we have from their own mouths that leading Dems (eg Reid and Levin) won't do that, because it's defunding the troops. Or playing chicken, to use Obama's phrase.

The CQ kicker is this:

The Democratic amendments, even if they fail, would serve the purpose of keeping the focus on Iraq, Democratic aides said. "The idea is keep having these votes and put them on the spot, so more and more Republicans turn," one aide said.

Dumb idea. But I'm struggling to think of a better one.

Update [2007-7-9 19:11:7 by skeptic06]:

Kossack easily satisfied with Nancy first speech of the current act in the kabuki piece (tragedy or farce, according to your sensibilities).

The TPM guy she links is quite beside himself:

a new Congressional analysis shows that the cost of the Iraq War has jumped to an astounding $10 billion per month -- a fact that is certain to be picked up by Democrats and wielded like a mace against Bush and the GOP over Iraq.

Now that's what I callgoing medieval on his ass!

It's of a piece with the Lioness's roar - which includes the following:

The American people are outraged at the Bush Administration’s misplaced priorities -- that is why Congress will hold the Administration accountable with votes this month to end the war and redeploy the troops.

She needs a little parsing:

Glendower: I can call Spirits from the vastie Deepe.
Hotspur: Why so can I, or so can any man:
But will they come, when you doe call for them?

Tags: 'Send No Bill' Strategy, Democratic Iraq Strategy, FY08 Defense Authorization Bill, HR 1585, S 1547 (all tags)

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