Obama Misleads On "Support" For Reid-Feingold

Sen. Barack Obama's "support" for Reid-Feingold is based on a phony description of what the Reid-Feingold framework is about:

Tomorrow, I expect cloture votes on two other proposals. One is the Reid-Feingold plan, which would begin a withdrawal of troops in 120 days and end all combat operations on April 1. . . . I will support both, not because I believe either is the best answer . . .

Quite simply, Senator Obama has chosen to mislead as to the critical point about the Reid Feingold proposal. It is this:

Prohibition on Use of Funds - No funds appropriated or otherwise made available under any provision of law may be obligated or expended to continue the deployment in Iraq of members of the United States Armed Forces after March 31, 2008.

Nothing in any of Senator Obama's proposals contains the concept of NOT funding the Iraq Debacle after a date certain. Senator Obama needs to be forthright on this issue- either he supports not funding the Iraq Debacle after a date certain, or he does not. His "support" of the Reid-Feingold framework is phony and false. To me, this is the WORST possible answer he could have given. I would have preferred honest disagreement. Instead Senator Obama gives us disingenuous "support." Bad show.

< Dodd: "Half Measures Won't Stop This President" | R.I.P. Jerry Falwell >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    argh! n/t (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by andgarden on Tue May 15, 2007 at 01:59:18 PM EST

    Do you think (5.00 / 3) (#3)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue May 15, 2007 at 02:01:32 PM EST
    I am being too harsh? I am livid right now I must tell you.

    Obama makes me angry (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by andgarden on Tue May 15, 2007 at 02:03:14 PM EST
    because I KNOW that he's much smarter about all of this than he lets on.

    Actually (5.00 / 3) (#5)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue May 15, 2007 at 02:05:30 PM EST
    I am livid about this because he treats us like idiots.

    Fruit of the same tree IMHO. n/t (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by andgarden on Tue May 15, 2007 at 02:09:48 PM EST
    Fair enough (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue May 15, 2007 at 02:11:05 PM EST
    That's pretty enigmatic. (none / 0) (#8)
    by oculus on Tue May 15, 2007 at 02:30:13 PM EST
    Thanks. The Obama cheerleaders (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by oculus on Tue May 15, 2007 at 02:00:17 PM EST
    are all over this one.  

    Disagreeing isn't misleading (none / 0) (#9)
    by joejoejoe on Tue May 15, 2007 at 02:38:56 PM EST
    I don't see how Obama's statement is misleading in any way. He plainly says he thinks his plan to legislate redeployment with a veto-proof majority is his preferred method of ending the war. So what if he didn't mention the 'NOT FUNDING' option in his statement? He didn't mention his own 'SHORT LEASH' funding in the statement either. Does that mean that Obama is being dishonest with himself?

    I believe your 'NOT FUNDING' plan is viable but my preferred method of ending the war is Obama's method - with a bipartisan majority. It's a backdoor war begun with lies and cowardice which I would prefer the US ended through a clear super mandate by Congress, not a legislative maneuver of 'not funding' which will surely not provide definitive political closure on a wrenching, horrible, failed war. A veto-proof majority provides closure in a way that 'NOT FUNDING' does not.

    The 'NOT FUNDING' option doesn't magically remove the US military from Iraq, it simply removes the funds for their mission. There is a $530 billion dollar DoD budget, $45 billion in Intelligence funds, and $60 billion in defense related funds in State, Energy and other agencies. How does a simple majority 'NOT FUNDING' prevent the Bush administration from shifting funds to pay for one additional year in Iraq? That is my big problem with 'NOT FUNDING' - it doesn't address the likely Iran-Contra type massive funding shifts from a cornered and criminal Bush Administration.

    I support the 'NOT FUNDING' option and believe it is a viable option if not my first option in ending the Iraq War but I think it is unfair to call Obama's statement misleading simply because he omitted a full account of a strategy not his own. The same statement omitted details of Obama's own plan. It's a concise press release - not a treatise on the funding of the Iraq War.

    I believe it's unfair to label as deception what is simple disagreement.

    Your "plan" (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by andgarden on Tue May 15, 2007 at 02:44:00 PM EST
    is a fantasy.

    When Obama uses the phrase NOT funding (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue May 15, 2007 at 03:03:20 PM EST
    to describe then he wil be honest about Reid-Feingold.

    You yourself just proved how misleading Obama was on this.


    Let's stipulate that 'NOT FUNDING' works (none / 0) (#19)
    by joejoejoe on Tue May 15, 2007 at 03:35:48 PM EST
    If 'not funding' works just as you've laid out over many posts how do deal with the following scenarios.

    1) GOP-sponsored funding for Iraq. The House GOP could offer a discharge petition with a few months of clean funding in March '08 that attracts Blue Dogs and DLC-types unwilling to block funding. The GOP Senate could push for similar legislation to be put on the legislative schedule. Are Ben Nelson, Mark Pryor, and Mary Landrieu going to support blocking funding through your 'not funding' plan come March '08?

    2) How does the US military redeploy from Iraq? Does Bush fold and withdraw under threat or steal from other appropriations to continue the Iraq War? If you don't have a supermajority to end the war you Iraq War you are unlikely to get a supermajority to impeach.

    I'd appreciate if you could address these points above about what happens after 'not funding succeeds' - if not here in the comments then at some time in the future. I'm curious to hear how you think events would play out if your 'not funding' scenario is successful in Congress.

    - - -

    As for Obama being 'misleading', are you saying it's intellectually misleading for Obama to vote for cloture in a vote that he thinks is going to fail? I think that's intellectually consistent, not misleading. You're saying he's casting the right vote for the wrong reasons but the practical effect is exactly the same.

    You'll have a case against Obama if he votes for cloture, the cloture votes wins, and then Obama votes against the final bill. But to have a hypothetical litmus test for Obama's motivations strikes me as unfair. It's like an IRV runoff vote. Obama supports your 'not funding plan', it's just not his first choice. His vote would still count for your plan if it ends up being most popular. Your point of disagreement is he's not making your arguements more vocally. But they are your arguments, not Obama's. You can think he's not bright or a chump on that count, but I don't see how he's being misleading. He went out of his way to say Feingold-Reid is not his first choice - that's honest, not misleading. It might be misguided but it's not dishonest.


    What was misleading was his misdescription (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue May 15, 2007 at 04:33:27 PM EST
    of the key component of Reid-Feingold.

    In essence, he avoids the NOT funding issue because, I think it is clear, he does not support NOT funding.

    He did not want to say that so he obfuscated the issue.


    Obama profile (none / 0) (#11)
    by janinsanfran on Tue May 15, 2007 at 02:59:35 PM EST
    If people haven't read it, I recommend this New Yorker profile of Obama. Do we really have someone running for President who has decided, conscientiously, that fighting for what he thinks is right is too disruptive of good order for our society to survive it? That's what I got out of this piece. Others may have other takes.

    It is an excellent and fair profile (none / 0) (#13)
    by andgarden on Tue May 15, 2007 at 03:09:14 PM EST
    Was perfect Amtrak reading.

    Also, mcjoan knows the score on this (none / 0) (#14)
    by andgarden on Tue May 15, 2007 at 03:10:07 PM EST
    As you can see from her FP post over orange yonder.

    Wouldn't it be admirable if mcjoan would credit (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by oculus on Tue May 15, 2007 at 03:17:22 PM EST
    BTD as he does her?  

    Well, I think he's persona non grata over there (none / 0) (#16)
    by andgarden on Tue May 15, 2007 at 03:26:24 PM EST
    these days. I don't pretend to understand the politics though.

    Yes, but people can change, don't ya know? (none / 0) (#17)
    by oculus on Tue May 15, 2007 at 03:31:19 PM EST
    Who cares? (none / 0) (#18)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue May 15, 2007 at 03:32:11 PM EST
    That matter not one whit.

    Don't sweat it.


    I don't. n/t (none / 0) (#20)
    by andgarden on Tue May 15, 2007 at 03:37:31 PM EST
    Got it. (none / 0) (#21)
    by oculus on Tue May 15, 2007 at 03:50:13 PM EST
    Hillary Will Vote For Feingold Amendment (none / 0) (#23)
    by squeaky on Tue May 15, 2007 at 05:34:11 PM EST
    "Tomorrow, I will cast my vote to send the President a clear message: Democrats are united in fighting to change course, redeploy our troops out of Iraq, and end this war as soon as possible.

    "When the Senate votes on motions to allow debate on both the Feingold-Reid and Reed-Levin Amendments, I will vote for cloture on both. I do so because we, as a united party, must work together with clarity of purpose and mission to begin bringing our troops home and end this war."