Weasels of War

The pajama party is over. Senate Republicans plus Joe Lieberman have blocked a vote on the Reed-Levin amendment, which mandated withdrawal from Iraq by April 2008. The vote was 52-47; 60 votes are needed for cloture. Four Republicans voted with the Dems: senators Olympia Snowe, Gordon Smith, Chuck Hagel, and Susan Collins. According to Greg Sargent, Senator Reid voted against the bill himself for procedural reasons, so he can re-introduce it some other time. Tim Johnson is still unwell, although he is recovering, and could not vote. The remaining 48 Dems voted for cloture.

I do enjoy reading what the Right thinks about things. Spawn of Evil Jules Crittendon writes,

Given that the anti-war movement essentially doesn’t exist, except a few fringe groups and rather loud and eccentric individuals, with a majority in Congress that can’t even keep its anti-war faction on board for anti-war votes, the Big Sleepover is a bid to get a national be-in going. I can’t wait to see what C-Span viewership was.

Given the recent polls on Iraq, that’s one hell of a fringe. I just want to know how much bigger the “fringe” must be from the “center” before some people acknowledge it’s not a “fringe” any more.

No one expected the vote to succeed; the point was to force Republican Senators to put their votes where their mouths are. Greg Sargent writes,

Here are the GOP Senators who have been said to be “wavering” in their backing for Bush’s war policies, but who today opposed allowing the Senate to vote on changing those policies:

Norm Coleman
Pete Domenici
Dick Lugar
John Sununu
John Warner

Greg leaves out George Voinovich. Harold Meyerson does not.

Anyone searching for the highest forms of invertebrate life need look no further than the floor of the U.S. Senate last week and this. These spineless specimens go by various names — Republican moderates; respected senior Republicans; Dick Lugar, John Warner, Pete Domenici, George Voinovich.

They have seen the folly of our course in Iraq. The mission, they understand, cannot be accomplished. The Iraqi government, they discern, is hopelessly sectarian.

In wisdom, they are paragons. In action, they are nullities.

Nullities and weasels, I would say.

Please do read all of Meyerson’s column; it is perfect. Here’s another snip:

Instead [of the Reed-Levin Amendment], they have drafted legislation that would require the administration to draw up plans for a pullback — but not to implement them. Indeed, they act continually as if George Bush and Dick Cheney are amenable to argument and open to facts. “I’m hopeful they’ll change their minds,” Domenici said last week after a meeting with national security adviser Stephen Hadley. “I think we should continue to ratchet up the pressure, in addition to our words,” said Voinovich, “to let the White House know we are very sincere.”

Very sincere — now there’s a threat that concentrates the mind. These Republicans who proclaim their independence without acting on it have failed to come to terms with the single most important reality confronting them: that Bush and Cheney will keep the war going until Congress forces them to stop.

I’d like to suggest that, instead of endless bashing of the spineless Dems, we bash the spineless Republicans instead. Thanks much.

4 thoughts on “Weasels of War

  1. Over the last two days I have read David Brook’s recent homage to Mr. Confident and Wonderful Deciderman, Dowd’s ditty snarking everybody, Friedmans’ recent whatever and transcripts of recent on-air conversations between Wolf Blitzer and Michael Ware and Anderson Cooper. Frankly, I don’t know whether to shi*t or go blind.

    I understand George and Dick are protecting the legacy of their time in office. I also think that they are working to keep the flow outward bound so their Iran option stays open in case some (even small) change in the equation gives them an opening, or more likely gives Israel the green light with the administration managing the blow-back.

    I don’t have a guess whether avoiding impeachment matters to them when it comes to Iran, but I damn sure think that Dick has the blood lust and the other guy (like Brooks said) believes that it doesn’t matter what humans say, his task is congruent with God’s will.

    Is there another piece to this cluster-smooch?

  2. This adminstration handle blow-back!?! They can’t even handle blowing soap-bubbles!!!
    Keep the feet Republican’s to the fire. Every day. They are the spinelss ones. They all know the war is wrong, except for the delusional ones (Holy Joe, among them). They mirror the President’s stubborness, and call it standing on principle.
    Every night when I go to bed, I pray that in the morning I won’t turn on the new’s and find that we’ve bombed Iran – and I’m not even religious.

  3. Another 4 GI’s killed yesterday… I’m glad it ain’t me dying for Bush’s stupidity.

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