November 18, 2005

Democrats Upset That They Must Publicly Declare Whether They Support An Immediate Pullout

Many Democrats have been demanding a withdrawal from Iraq. Now, they are upset that they are asked to publicly take a position on an immediate withdrawal:

House Republicans maneuvered for swift rejection Friday of any notion of immediately pulling U.S. troops out of Iraq, sparking a nasty, sometimes personal debate over the war and a Democratic lawmaker's own call for withdrawal.
Furious Democrats accused the GOP of orchestrating a political stunt, leaving little time for debate and changing the meaning of a withdrawal resolution offered by Democratic Rep. John Murtha of Pennsylvania.

For those reasons, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi sent word to rank-and-file Democrats to vote - with the Republicans - against immediate withdrawal of American troops.

Is it a political stunt? Probably. But, at the same time, there is a legitimate point to the request for the vote. Is it any more of a stunt than the Democrats invoking a seldom used rule to hold a closed-door session on pre-war intelligence?
It is a somewhat brilliant move. The Democrats have been falling all over themselves to prove their anti-war credentials to their base. Yet, the Democrats have to court moderates as well...to do so, they have fallen short of demanding a pullout. The Republicans want the Democrats to make their position clear. This vote does that.
If you are a member of the anti-war left, wouldn't you be upset that your elected Democratic leaders are going to vote against an immediate withdrawal of American troops? I think they would have a legitimate point (even though I disagree with their position).
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