Thursday :: Jul 19, 2007

Reid: No More Debates For Now


by Steve

After seeing Senate Republicans talk a good game and then cave once again into supporting Bush’s war without end, Democrats did the right thing and halted debate on any additional amendments that would change the course of the war. Harry Reid announced after getting only 52 votes to shut off debate on the Levin-Reed amendment that there will be no more face-saving amendments or debates on weaker measures. Hopefully, Reid will now not have any further debate on the 2008 Defense budget between now and the summer recess, and will let those Republicans go home and face their constituents for not doing anything to stop this war.

Today’s winner for stupid reasoning goes to Washington Post reporters Shailagh Murray and Paul Kane, who did their best to spin Reid’s decision as a victory for the White House:

Reid's move was hailed by antiwar groups, which have urged Democrats not to compromise. But his decision may also have the effect of providing Bush with an opportunity that he has wanted: 60 more days to make his case that the war is making progress.

Perhaps Murray and Kane will tell us how the lowly-rated Bush can convince Americans during the summer recess that the war is making progress when the Iraqi parliament is taking a vacation while our soldiers are dying for them. The only way their reasoning makes any sense is if Reid had allowed weaker measures to come up for a vote, like a mission change amendment, which would have undercut Bush’s chance to leave the status quo in place. Leave it to Edward Epstein of the San Francisco Chronicle to correctly point out what the all-nighter was really about: forcing next year's vulnerable GOP incumbents to vote one more time for war without end, thereby exposing them as frauds.

Reid has no reason to expect GOP support for any alternative that would go against Bush at this point, given their “all talk, no action” behavior. Reid is just as well off if he suspends work on the defense budget until September; gins up the message machine during the summer recess to hammer the point that this GOP supports war without end; and then makes the GOP come to him after the recess with an alternative that already has the votes to force a mission change.

Until then, let the "waverers in name only" like Warner, Voinovich, Lugar, Coleman, and the rest of them wear their vote yesterday around their necks.

Steve :: 7:57 AM :: Comments (10) :: Digg It!