On Iraq: September The Month of Decision? Only If Dems Make It So

The debate (and the "capitulation?") starts. Bush remains as shameless as ever:

President Bush, appearing confident about sustaining support for his Iraq strategy, met at the Pentagon on Friday with the uniformed leaders of the nation’s armed services and then pointedly accused the war’s opponents of politicizing the debate over what to do next. “The stakes in Iraq are too high and the consequences too grave for our security here at home to allow politics to harm the mission of our men and women in uniform,” Mr. Bush said . . .

Will the Democrats remain as cowardly as ever?

“What we’re hearing is a pretty consistent message of failure on the political front in Iraq,” said Senator Richard J. Durbin of Illinois, a Democrat, who visited Iraq in August. . . . On Friday, Mr. Durbin expressed hope that more Republicans would join in forcing the president to begin withdrawing American forces from Iraq.

Durbin, Obama's man, is sounding very cowardly to me, hoping for Republicans to save the day. It echoes and reflects Barack Obama's entire performance on this issue. Hillary Clinton has been no better.

But September can be a time for redemption for Democrats. If they will demand a date certain for ending the Iraq Debacle; a date certain for NOT funding the Iraq Debacle. Will there be another cowardly capitulation? Let's hope not. And more, let's fight to make sure there is not one. Instead of planning the exploitation of the Iraq issue in the 2008 election, how about we pressure the Democratic Congress today? I am looking at you Move On, Daily Kos, MYDD, Open Left, etc. All you Netroots leaders. Fight to end the Iraq Debacle now.

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    Waiting for the Godot Democrats?? (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by andgarden on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 10:38:10 AM EST

    When I used to read TPM every day, (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by oculus on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 02:13:35 PM EST
    I noticed Josh Marshall would put up a challenge asking his readers to contact Congress and report back on the response on tightly worded issues.  Not sure if this was effective, but it did get my attention.

    Meteor Blades (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by Meteor Blades on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 02:48:12 PM EST
    I wish I thought we were going to see a change of heart. I wish the message coming out of the congressional leadership right now was "fully fund the withdrawal." But magical September has arrived, the propaganda barrage is in full swing, and there aren't, as far as I can see, enough Democrats on board to either stop the funding by keeping a bill off the floor of either house of Congress, or to send a date-certain bill to the President.

    At best, we're back to the struggles of March-May. And, I fear, when the results are tallied, we will be back again to May 24, a very dark day indeed.

    But, as unlikely as I think our chances are, I will not cease fighting.

    In Indiana (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by tnthorpe on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 03:27:23 PM EST
    Bluedog Donnelly and Sen. Bayh just don't listen. We have bipartisaship here, inside the Democratic party. How to advocate in this environment? "Pessimism of the intellect, optimism of the will" is about all there is to go on now.

    No more funding (none / 0) (#2)
    by janinsanfran on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 10:44:27 AM EST
    None of these people seem to have been taught civics in elementary school as I was long ago. If the House of Representatives does not provide funding, there is no money. That is the rule in the Constitution.

    If they provide the money, they own the war. It is that simple.

    even if you know for absolutely certain (none / 0) (#3)
    by Stewieeeee on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 10:46:35 AM EST
    that bipartisanship is a waste of time, ther is some value. ...  being able to say you gave the opposition a chance to do the right thing still has some merit.

    if that's what durbin is doing, i support it.

    problem is we have no confidence whatsoever that he is doing that.  he may actually believe some/enough republicans will break ranks.  and if that's the case, i still don't think it's a function of cowardice, it's a function of naivete.

    and perhaps stupidity.

    How many chances (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by andgarden on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 11:08:04 AM EST
    do the Republicans need to be given to implement John Warner's phony compromises?

    it doesn't hurt anything to just say (none / 0) (#5)
    by Stewieeeee on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 11:14:30 AM EST
    they can if they want, the first time, the second time, the 8th time, the 135th time, or even the 9,332nd time.

    if anything, IF you know they won't, there is -- or can be -- some benefit to saying they had a chance to do so.

    it's just a way of constantly reminding people that every other less drastic measures were at least attempted.  we didn't want to do this.  republican intransigence forces us to do this.

    but again, i don't think we have any confidence durbin is setting this situation up in that manner.


    With Iran more and more on the table (none / 0) (#6)
    by buhdydharma on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 11:55:11 AM EST
    It really is the whole world waiting to see what these 535 individuals will do.  This feels like a true historical turning point...but all of the signs seem to lead to continuing the plunge into madness. Momentum is carrying us down the river toward a huge waterfall and nobody in DC seems to be noticing.

    It is just insane.

    scared to death (none / 0) (#7)
    by diogenes on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 12:03:03 PM EST
    The debacle could end on January 2009 easily; the Dems seem to be scared to death that if they are the ones to do it then they will have to take the blame if something goes wrong.  
    Maybe this Congress needs to address issues that Americans DO care about (health care, secure borders, immigration, social security) since the poll numbers indicate that Congress's favorable ratings are about as low as Bush's right now.

    Excellent. (none / 0) (#8)
    by oculus on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 02:02:10 PM EST
    P.S.  Puhlease.  Its Labor Day weekend.  Time to post your most inflammatory email.  

    Only about 40 (none / 0) (#11)
    by koshembos on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 02:20:56 PM EST
    There are only about 40 Democratic senators who want the fiasco in Iraq to end. (What is taking place in Iraq is not a war.) What can you do? Instead of ignoring the number and blaming the 40 as if they are 60, how about finding other ways to vent your anger.

    In any event, I believe that if Bush will get no money at all to continue the war he will find unconstitutional ways to do it. We are wasting our time.

    Advocate. (none / 0) (#12)
    by oculus on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 02:24:53 PM EST
    I don't understand these Dems (none / 0) (#15)
    by chemoelectric on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 03:55:52 PM EST
    Via my lifelong association with mental health care (on the receiving end), I understand Bush. He's an example of what inpatient care was made for. But I don't understand these Dems. What I don't understand is that clearly their country is in an emergency situation, and yet they do not feel compelled to act. I'm a squeamish coward, but for the life of me I can't see myself in a position of power like theirs and not employing it to rescue the nation, damn all the excuses for doing nothing. What is with these people? Do they love their land or don't they?

    When Pat Leahy comes out and whines like The last time I looked the Vice President was part of the executive branch, he should actually be saying (in slightly more diplomatic terms) 'I am going to go over to the "Vice President's" office, rip off his privy parts, and shove them down his throat, and only then will I ask him again whether he wants to provide us with the information we are requesting.' This is just simple common sense: it is the sort of response Bush-Cheney test for, and when they do not get it they know they can move forward unimpeded with blowing up the next hapless country.

    How can a man like John Kerry risk bullets and bombs for his country in a mistake, only to shrivel up and hide, decades later, for fear of what people will merely say about him if he asks, meekly, whether some attention ought to be paid to the voting in Ohio before he concedes the Presidency. I can understand Al Gore conceding to the Supreme Court, however much they betrayed us, but I can't understand John Kerry doing nothing. What in heaven's name is wrong with him?

    Did we vote for these people and why did we do that? And I don't mean some nonsense about corporate influence; that's bad stuff but it didn't do this to John Kerry.

    If and when the bombs drop on Iran, I'm calling the event 'Nancy Pelosi's attack on Iran'.

    The Stockholm Syndrome (none / 0) (#16)
    by cmpnwtr on Sat Sep 01, 2007 at 06:52:04 PM EST
    These people (Dem Congress)with some exception are so used to getting slapped around they get really anxious if they are told they have actual power to do something. Being the abused victim is what they seem to know and what they prefer.