Were the Iraq timelines dropped because of Gordon Smith?

Gordon_smith_sadYesterday, the Democratic leadership in the Congress decided to drop the timelines in the Iraq funding bill.

Over at MyDD, Jerome Armstrong believes the timelines were dropped because Gordon Smith caved on ending the war.

But the withdrawal language was only included in the Senate bill because of two Republicans Senators, Smith and Hagel, that agreed to vote for the original bill that included withdrawal from Iraq language.

I've not seen it reported, but have heard that both told Democratic leadership in the Senate that they would not go forward with further votes. Hagel has made it clear from the beginning that it was "about sending a signal to Bush" and the administration. For Smith, it's all about his threading a re-election campaign in Oregon with high-profile acts of disagreement with Bush.

If that's the case --that Hagel and Smith were not aboard for another vote-- the Democrats were left with just 48 votes, not the 50-49 result needed to return the withdrawal language to Bush.

Once again, Senator Gordon Smith wants to have it both ways: he says he's against the war, but he won't vote to end it.

Will Oregon's major media (we're talking to you, SW Broadway) actually do some original reporting here? Did Senator Gordon Smith withdraw his support for a bill that would actually end the war? Or is this the best you can do?

Discuss.

Comments

  • Alex Davies (unverified)
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    "he says he's against the war, but he won't vote to end it."

    Which puts him in the same boat as the Congressional Democratic leadership then, doesnt it?

  • (Show?)

    Now there's a helpful meme! "Smith's recapitulation directly buries chances for Iraq withdrawal."

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    That was Smith's position a couple of days ago. What's his position today?

  • Bill R. (unverified)
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    The Dem alleged "leadership" is looking for an excuse for exercising real leadership. The war stops when they stop funding it. Period.. There doesn't have to be any vote. What's Bush going to do, hold American troops in hostage situation? The Vietnam war stopped because Congress defunded it. Congress has support from the public, so do it! As for Smith, he hasn't impressed anyone with his election year conversion.

  • Alex Davies (unverified)
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    Exactly, Bill R. Clearly, Gordon Smith has more power over how Democrats in Congress act and vote than any of their "leaders" do.

    Here's an idea: Democrats should offer to make Smith their new Senate majority leader if he agrees to make his "conversion" official and switch parties. Obviously they're already looking to him for political guidance and courage anyway!

  • Bert Lowry (unverified)
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    I just called Sen. Smith's office (in addition to Cong. Blumenauer and Sen. Wyden) to ask him to vote against any funding bill that did not include hard deadlines for withdrawal. Both Cong. Blumenauer and Sen. Wyden's staff were professional and courteous. They listened to my one-sentence request and took down my name and address.

    When I called Sen. Smith's office, I was interupted immediately after I introduced myself and transfered to voicemail. It went like this:

    Staffer: Sen. Gordon Smith's office, how may I direct your call?

    Me: Hi, my name is Bert Lowry. I'm a constituent of Sen. Smith and I'm calling to ask him to...

    Staffer: Right. (click)

    Voicemail: Hi, this is Sen. Smith. Thank you for taking the time to call me with you views and concerns, etc., etc.

    I was stunned. Is this how his office treats all constituents?

  • (Show?)

    He did that recently, Bert. You pretty much just get foisted onto voicemail unless you ask for a specific person.

    Sucks, but if you'd talked to a human you'd just get "the Senator hasn't taken a public position yet."

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    I was stunned. Is this how his office treats all constituents?

    No. If you had called and said you wanted to make a donation to his re-election campaign you would have been treated with courtesy. The staff probably thought you were just another boob with the mistaken belief that Smith represented you when you said you were a constituent.

  • (Show?)

    Bill R.

    Wrong. We had already pulled our combat troops out of Vietnam before Congress "de-funed" aid to the South Vietnamese Government (our combat troops were already out of Vietnam since March 23, 1973 by the time of the December 1974 de-funding votes in Congress).

    I am as strident as you can imagine in demanding an end to this disaster that is our occupation of Iraq, up to and including, de-funding of Iraq military operations and impeachment of those responsible for it. But let's not re-invent and re-write history to make the argument shall we?

  • Dave Lister (unverified)
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    A buddy of mine went to Smith's office in the WTC and found the door locked (which he said was not ordinarily the case). A big guy finally answered the door. He seemed more like a bouncer than a Senator's staffer. He listened courteously to my friend's concerns and then sent him on his way.

  • Frank Vulliet (unverified)
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    It's enough to make one puke!

    The Dems should stick with the original bill. Bush had no legitimate complaints. It gave the Iraqi's enough time to clean up their act (by July). It's not like they don't know what the facts are, or need additional information. They simply have to make some tough decisions and be prepared to live with and deal with the results. It also gave Bush leverage with the Iraqi's he does not, or more accurately, been willing to exercise.

    It funded the war for the period both the military and administration said was sufficient to determine whether the surge was "working" (whatever or however that might be defined). And it certainly left the door open for additional funding if justified.

    Instead, we get a cave-in to a spoiled child who has demonstrated gross incompetence superimposed on outright dishonesty. Bush has been like a drunk driver careening down the road. Responsible, conscientious people would want him off the road immediately, so even the original supplemental proposal had its flaws. But instead of acting to do so; i.e., you can have the original bill or you can have none, Democratic leadership turns around and gives the driver another fifth of gin in response to his wheedling, whining, and "Shirley Temple" pouts and foot-stomps.

    It escapes my understanding what the problem is with refusing supplemental funding. The onus is on Bush, not Democrats, if he leaves the troops in harm's way. He had a choice; why should it be the Dems fault?

    MOCs who vote for the current "compromise" are not deserving of re-election. Minimum wage, timber payments, etc. should be puut in separate bills.

  • JohnH (unverified)
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    I think people are misreading Smith's position: he is not against the war. He was against the way the war was being run. Smith would obviously like to confuse the issue to make it appear that he's against the war, because that's where popular sentiment is.

    In today's Oregonian, "Smith Sen. Gordon Smith, R-Ore., said his trip to Iraq last weekend affirmed his position that U.S. forces should not police an Iraqi civil war.

    "My position is unchanged," Smith said. "If anything, in numerous conversations with Oregon soldiers, they ratified my position."

    Smith, who led a congressional delegation to Iraq and Jordan, said U.S. troops are making a "heroic effort" in Iraq. "What we are doing now what we have not been doing over the previous four years -- clearing, holding and building." http://www.oregonlive.com/oregonian/stories/index.ssf?/base/news/1179885324198680.xml&coll=7

    In other words, Smith now likes what he is seeing from the US military, whereas he didn't like what he was seeing last December. And now he is shifting blame to the Iraqi government.

    Smith's position is barely distinguishable from that of the Bush administration. This needs to be repeated and repeated until people realize that Smith really is pro-war.

    Bert Lowry and Dave Lister's experiences reaffirm my position that Smith is aloof and not interested in what constituents have to say. His Iraq War position shows that he is out of touch with Oregon voters.

    What makes Democrats unwilling or unable to capitalize on the disconnect between Oregonians and their absentee Senator?

  • Thomas Ware (unverified)
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    Out here on the High Desert we have a saying - if you don't like the weather, wait a minute. We can't do anything about the weather, but we can show this bozo the door.

  • Miles (unverified)
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    It escapes my understanding what the problem is with refusing supplemental funding. The onus is on Bush, not Democrats, if he leaves the troops in harm's way. He had a choice; why should it be the Dems fault?

    Whether it should or should not be the Dems fault, that's how it will be viewed by most Americans. The public supports timelines and a date-certain for withdrawal, but they won't support a Gingrich-style shutdown of the defense department. There is a big difference between the Democratic provisions in the Iraq funding bill and a Democratic refusal to fund the troops at all. I think such a move would ensure a Republican president and Congress in 2008.

    The same public that elected a Democratic majority in 2006 also reelected Bush for a second term in 2004. Elections have consequences, that is our reality for 20 more months, and I won't attack Democrats in Washington for being realists about that. You shouldn't either.

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    Whether it should or should not be the Dems fault, that's how it will be viewed by most Americans. The public supports timelines and a date-certain for withdrawal, but they won't support a Gingrich-style shutdown of the defense department. There is a big difference between the Democratic provisions in the Iraq funding bill and a Democratic refusal to fund the troops at all. I think such a move would ensure a Republican president and Congress in 2008.

    There has NEVER been any bill offered to "refuse to fund the troops at all." This has absolutely nothing to do with shutting down the government, and merely plays into GOP memes that stopping funding somehow constitutes "cutting off funds for the troops." There is plenty of money for both fiscal 07 AND 08 already passed; the House has already said yes to over 100bil for 08.

    All four Democratic Reps should be voting no on this bill.

  • Miles (unverified)
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    TJ: I was responding to Bill R.'s assertion that we don't even have to have a vote, Congress can just not pass a bill and force the President's hand. I think that would be disastrous for the party and the anti-war cause.

    As for whether there is enough money for FY 2008 already, if that's the case then why are Pelosi and Reid passing a supplemental bill in the first place? The article I read says funding from the new bill expires in September '07, which leads me to believe that there isn't enough funding for the whole fiscal year.

    My larger point is that we have to live with the government that we have (slim D majorities in Congress, crazy GOP president), not the one that we want. If the President keeps vetoing the funding bills, and we can't override that veto, then at some point we have to blink. If we follow Bill R.'s advice, I think the party, the troops, and the country loses.

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    Posted by: JohnH | May 23, 2007 1:43:25 PM Smith, who led a congressional delegation to Iraq and Jordan, said U.S. troops are making a "heroic effort" in Iraq. "What we are doing now what we have not been doing over the previous four years -- clearing, holding and building."

    What is truly out-of-step is, that is not the new "plan" that is now being pursued by our forces in Iraq. As the Washington Post reported today about the leaked Corkcer-Petraeus plan:

    The plan has three pillars to be carried out simultaneously -- in contrast to the prior sequential strategy of "clear, hold and build." One shifts the immediate emphasis of military operations away from transitioning to Iraqi security forces -- the primary focus under the former top U.S. commander, Gen. George W. Casey Jr. -- toward protecting Iraq's population in trouble areas... (emphasis mine)

    So Smith isn't even being accurate even about what the military is attempting to do and how it is going about doing it, to say nothing about his talking out of both sides of his mouth for political/electoral purposes on the issue. His stunt about calling the occupation "almost criminal" was actually a statement which can be read as doing a 180 on the war AND be read as also calling for a "get tougher" message as well. Of course The Oregonian laps that posturing Kabuki up. He uses this, and his schizophrenic voting on the emergency supplemental (then voting against Feingold-Reid), as a way to play to both political camps he needs. He polishes his fake "moderation" creds with centrist Democrats and independents, while putting distance between himself and Bush in a way that doesn't lose him his GOP support.

    The question is, how can this be explained to low-information voters in a way that will move them to vote for someone else next fall?

  • Harry (unverified)
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    <h2>"Did Senator Gordon Smith withdraw his support for a bill that would actually end the war?"</h2>

    Good plan...let's introduce a bill that ends the war, maybe even where we end it in our victory, and where the terrorists lose, eh? Let me help write the first two lines:

    "Whereas, we win." "Whereas, they lose." blah blah blah

    I bet that bill would get 100% support...

    Jerome, you are brilliant!!

    Why didn't anybody else think of that before Jerome?

    Harry

  • (Show?)
    Posted by: Miles | May 23, 2007 2:39:54 PM My larger point is that we have to live with the government that we have (slim D majorities in Congress, crazy GOP president), not the one that we want. If the President keeps vetoing the funding bills, and we can't override that veto, then at some point we have to blink.

    Why?

    Why does Congress "have to blink" when the overwhelming majority supports the position on having a timetable on getting out of Iraq?

    Bush had the check in his hand and tore it up, so why do you think it is incumbent on Congress to "blink" and hand Bush his blank-check?

  • Miles (unverified)
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    Why does Congress "have to blink" when the overwhelming majority supports the position on having a timetable on getting out of Iraq?

    I'm not sure that I would agree that the majority is "overwhelming," but let's hypothetically say that it is. The president is still the president, still commander-in-chief. As a result, Congress is always going to be in the weaker bargaining position. That's the way it was with the Gingrich shut down in 1995(?), and the way I think it is with Iraq war funding in 2007.

    Plus, Democrats do not have a strong majority in Congress. Things could be different with a 6 or 7 vote majority in the Senate and 50 votes in the House, but that's not what we have. With Republicans sticking together, Sen. Johnson not voting, and Lieberman voting with Bush, I'm not even sure we could pass the original bill again. None of this is to say that we shouldn't still hammer the president on this, but politically I think that sending a bill to Bush every week that he vetoes is a losing strategy. And refusing to send a bill at all is suicidal.

    Politics aside, I also think Democrats needs to be damn sure that a timeline for withdrawal doesn't create an even worse situation both for us and the Iraqis. Reagan abandoned Afghanistan, and that didn't work out so well for us. This is a horrible, ill-conceived war, but one that a Democratic president needs to deal with starting in January 2009. I'd like to see some Democratic statesmen come up with a plan that gets our troops out and stabilizes the region. I'm not sure that I've seen that yet.

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    Sorry Miles, but your points are, to put it rather bluntly, strawmen arguments.

    First, 61% + support timetables for getting out of Iraq. That is an overwhelming majority in my book.

    Second, Gingrich never had more than 41 support in the public (at his high-point). Furthermore, not approving an emergency supplemental would not stop Social Security check from going out, nor closing down the Smithsonian, or halting processing of Medicare claims, etc. So to even bring up Gingrich's hissy-fit at not being given a seat on Air Force 1 and shutting down all of the Federal Government is a fraudulent comparison (at best)

    Beyond that, staying in Iraq and escalating it, which is what is occurring and what this funds, will make it worse, far worse than now, and withdrawal will not make it worse and stands a chance of making it better and more stable.

    As Ali Allawi, who was minister of trade under the Iraq Governing Council and has since served as Iraq's first post-invasion civilian minister of defense, as an elected member of Iraq's Transitional National Assembly, and as minister of finance under Ibrahim al-Jaafari's transitional National Government talekd about in an interview with Juan Cole the other day:

    I do not believe that the withdrawal of U.S. troops will have a material effect on the level of violence. What it will do is finalize the sectarian character of the Iraqi security forces. At present, the U.S. is, ineffectively, trying to bolster the formation of a professional military that owes its loyalty to the central Iraqi state, and weaving ties between the senior officer corps of the Iraqi army and the U.S. military establishment. That is being constantly undermined and thwarted by a countereffort to ensure that the senior military cadres are loyal to those who control the government apparatus. A U.S. pullout will simply lead to the abandonment of the formal policy of a nonsectarian military. The government, we must remember, disposes of very large financial resources that will be used to strengthen armed forces that are loyal to it rather than to a nebulous concept of a united Iraqi state. The battle lines will be drawn more sharply, but not necessarily in ways that would inevitably lead to the proverbial bloodbath. The majority Sunni areas will resist more forcefully the imposition of the writ of the central government, possibly by institutionalizing sectarian security forces such as the Anbar tribal levies, and authorizing the formation of similar units in Mosul and elsewhere. How those new Sunni security structures will relate to the insurgents and to Al Qaeda is an important issue. It is highly likely that they will be infiltrated by the insurgents. The south will not necessarily "fall" to the Badr Corps or to the Mahdi Army. There would be no need for that if the military in Baghdad is dominated by them in any case. The fiction will be maintained that the Iraqi armed forces are neutral between the contending groups, but in reality they will be dominated by the Shia political factions working through the government. In many ways, such an outcome would be relatively stable, if the central government does not try to extend its authority to the Sunni Arab areas. The conflict would escalate only if the government tries to dominate those areas, or, alternatively, the Sunni Arab insurgents continue in a (losing) campaign to extend their control into Baghdad. In disputed areas, such as Diyala province, there is the chance that the fighting would escalate as both sides tried to assert their control.

    In short, the oft alluded to or implied Sunni bloodbath scenario is simply not that credible or likely. The Kurds and the Shiite majority controlled Gov. and Regional areas have the oil and have no real compelling interest in wanting to go after what is in essence worthless desert without resources. As Allawi discusses in that interview:

    The withdrawal of U.S. troops outside the framework of a comprehensive political settlement will not lead to civil war Iraq is already mired in civil conflict but it will accelerate the consolidation of a sectarian central state. It will lead to a redoubling of the efforts by the present governing alliance to extend its control over the central state and its security institutions.

    In essence, the US is trying to hold up an artificial an unstable power-balance in the form of the current "unity" government.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    My larger point is that we have to live with the government that we have...

    When unions were fighting against deplorable conditions and talking about strikes there were workers basically saying the same thing and willing to accept the miserable status quo. Same for some African-Americans when MLK, Jr and civil rights workers were trying to end segregation.

    And, of course, there was a time back around 1776 when people didn't buy into Thomas Paine's arguments or others who wanted to throw off another George's yoke.

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    We need to find people who might be willing to show up at both of Smith's offices (in Portland and DC) and record first hand how his staff handles constituents. Maybe someone can put something together for the Stop Gordon Smith website.

  • Mike Schryver (unverified)
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    This isn't going to be a popular post, but I think we might be tilting at windmills with the de-funding attempt. We're certainly not going to de-fund the entire military (nor should we), so what's to stop Bush from continuing to keep the troops in Iraq even if the war is de-funded? What, because he's legally required to withdraw the troops, he's going to do so? I don't believe for a minute that he'd let the law get in his way. Bush has stated time and again that he's not going to withdraw the troops, and about this, I believe him. I think the only way to get the troops out is if he's not the Commander Guy. We must impeach him.

    (If someone can explain to me in practical terms how de-funding the war will prevent Bush from in a concrete way from keeping the troops there, I'll be glad to hear it.)

  • LT (unverified)
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    With regard to behavior of Smith's DC staff, last time I called they sounded about ready to send me to voice mail until I said "...and if you send me to voice mail I will call the Portland office and say I got lousy customer service from the DC office" and then I was able to say what I wanted to say to a real live human.

    Would be interesting to see Steve Novick chime in on this topic.

  • Pavel Goberman (unverified)
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    Republicans, Democrats and etc. What is the difference? Same garbage! In the Constitution of the USA is written: "We the People....". The blood of our soldiers in Iraq is on Republican, Democratic Parties and on the media. They did everything to block my election. They are enemies of us, the People. They are creating bribery, corruption and political prostitution. I have a plan to bring our troopers from Iraq not in a few years, but in 2-4 months. Not withdraw, but bring them home with the victory and with minimum loss of our soldiers, but President Bush and Secreatry of Defense Gates do not listem to me. And people are dying. Fuel price is gouging, USPS increased postage rate. Why? It has a huge profit: $1 billion in each last 5 years. Heavy traffic is contributing to our dependency on foreign and idiots in local and US governments don't know what to do. Borders are open. How many potential terrorist are living here and are ready to kill Americans. Who we are blaming for it? Blame yourself: you elected this garbage, but not me.

    Pavel Goberman - Candidate for US Senator. www.getenergized.com/vote.html

  • Garrett (unverified)
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    I've said it before and I'll say it again...cutting off funding under any circumstance is political suicide. Yes people want the war to end but no they do not want Congress to cut off the funds. Any reasonable person would deduce that we don't have the votes to override the President and he's a big enough a-hole to leave our troops in Iraq with no bullets. That being said if Dems do cut funding Bush leaves them there and then the Repubs win real big in the next election and we get to watch more and more of our social progressions fly away (abortion, civil liberties) and we get to watch Republicans erase everything we've been working for over the last 14 years of their draconian reign. Grow up. Face realitiy please.

    Mike Schreyver is dead on. You're not going to get Bush to do anything. We barely have the majority. Nothing is veto proof. It isn't going to happen until Bush is gone. The next President whether it be Democrat or (please god no) another Republican is going to have to have the responsibility of deciding how our troops come out. Personally I'd rather continue making Republican reps look like arrogant war mongering jerks than make a bunch of good Democrats whose constituents will never stand for cutting off funds look like a bunch 1 time elected people who will be losing elections come 2008. You have to realize that the Republicans did a real good job rezoning everything on the last census and we won a lot of districts by NARROW margins. If you think crucifying Heath Schuler for not cutting off funding for the war in Iraq is going to help you're an idiot. He's a friend whose constituents wouldn't stand for that. Hell, I wouldn't stand for Earl cutting off funding for the troops in Iraq. Bush isn't going to bring them back...he's stated so countless times. I believe him. Quit trying to target good Dems who help us over this Iraq vote. I want the war over more than anyone but I've faced reality and know it isn't going to happen until 2008. I'm doing the prudent thing by saving my money, making Republicans look like a bunch of war mongering jerks and you bet your ass the nominee for the Dems for the Oregon Senate and President is going to get a nice contribution from me. I'm sick of wasting my time on trying to bully a bunch of house members from constituencys that are in areas so unlike Oregon. I visit a district in Texas with a Democratic Rep quite a bit. Believe me those people wouldn't stand for withdrawing funds from our troops and they hate the war more than anyone in Oregon. They're in a military district with a military base and have far, far, far more invested than any of us in Multnomah County. I am unwilling to sacrifice my civil liberties, abortion rights, labor rights and anything else Democrats stand for because I want us out of Iraq. Iraq sucks and it is a stupid war but we're not leaving anytime soon so I'm ok with Congressional reps caving because the President (yeah he's still got enough power) isn't going to cave. Who honestly thinks we can pull 180,000 troops out in 2 months and everything ends up hunky dory? Can you spell bloodbath? Both a bloodbath in Iraq and a bloodbath for Democrats come November when they get to run a bunch of Republicans who know how to talk the talk. I doubt you could find a staffer in DC (I know 13) who wouldn't tell you this whole idea of crucifying anyone who doesn't stick with the anti-war movement over this Iraq funding bill should pay for it in the end should lose their seat. Ok Iraq sucks but I know our President isn't changing until 2008. It isn't going to happen. Grow up and build on our gains rather than donating a bunch of money to groups who are going to bleed good Dems dry of their campaign funds in primary elections running against a psycho who only sees the Iraq war and not the rest of the mess that is our country. Nobody has ever answered that question. Last I checked Ralph Nader was against the war. Could he win a general election against Mitt Romney...NOPE. Hillary Clinton could. Maybe she made a bad vote but you bet your ass I'm not throwing away my vote at a Ralph Nader if its Clinton Vs. McCain. I prefer my civil liberties and womens rights over Iraq.

  • Rob Bole (unverified)
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    Amen to Garrett

  • RinoWatch (unverified)
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    Looks like ya'all are learning 'bout El Gordo....

  • pat malach (unverified)
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    Smith still gets credit with most Oregon media for being against drilling in ANWR when I'm pretty darn sure he actually managed to vote for it last time out. He's slick.

    Not to change the subject, but is there actually a hair or two OUT OF PLACE in that photo.

    I'm sure Gordo'a already had them cut off and sent to Guantanamo.

    Whoever is making his hair mold these days is in BIIIIIGGGGG trouble.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    Hell, I wouldn't stand for Earl cutting off funding for the troops in Iraq.

    But you and others sharing this attitude are prepared to leave the troops stuck in the middle of a civil war where the majority of Sunnis and Shias want all American forces out of Iraq. We're running close to an average of 90 a month in US dead alone with Iraqi casualties close to 1500 a month. How many more lives are you willing to sacrifice for what is obviously a lost cause with the potential of making the entire Middle East a monstrous disaster?

    You're prepared to leave the ball in the Bush/Cheney court despite the fact that practically every pronouncement they have made about Iraq has been proved wrong.

    The only funding we should authorize is enough to buy one-way airline tickets for the troops from Iraq to the U.S. - first class - and enough for independent diplomats with experience in Middle East affairs (excluding the Bush administration) to negotiate a deal with all involved parties. The history of most insurgencies has shown that national crises subside after foreign troops leave. The result may not always be the best possible in the short term but it is usually best in the long run.

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    Posted by: Garrett | May 23, 2007 11:47:37 PM I've said it before and I'll say it again...cutting off funding under any circumstance is political suicide. Yes people want the war to end but no they do not want Congress to cut off the funds. Any reasonable person would deduce that we don't have the votes to override the President and he's a big enough a-hole to leave our troops in Iraq with no bullets.

    Total crock on all levels.

    Anyone who buys the argument that not approving funding for continued military operations in Iraq will leave anyone without bullets, is a full-tilt moron. A de-funding bill would include funding for orderly withdrawal and force protection while withdrawing. Bush would literally have to order troops to be put into such a situation contrary to law, which would be, killing troops to make a political point, literally.

  • (Show?)

    Just called Sen. Smith's DC office, (202) 224-3753, and talked to a very polite and helpful staffer who did not send me to voice mail. My only complaint is that I got right through - which tells me that NOT ENOUGH OF US ARE CALLING.

    One down, two to go - and if they don't vote today, I'm calling again first thing tomorrow.

    Get your Senators on speed dial, people - now is the time! Wyden in DC: (202) 224-5244

  • (Show?)

    In response to Miles about funding:

    As I said, the House has already passed a bill for funding the Department of Defense beginning 10/1/07. The current bill is, as named, a supplemental bill for F07, to cover the surge underway. Even if the Democrats don't fund a single additional dime at this point, the basic appropriation of funds for our military has been cleared through September of 2008--not 2007. There is plenty of money to get them home; what Democrats should be doing is cutting off the money to keep them dying.

    It's a simple construct: "I will not allocate any more taxpayer money for American soldiers to die."

  • JTML (unverified)
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    I think that some people here still don't know what to expect from Smith...talking about demonstrating at his offices.

    The only thing to be done with Smith is to defeat him, to get rid of him, to extract him from the Senate.

    Part of defeating him is to organize quietly, away from the media spotlight. We don't want him or the other Republicks to see us coming.

    Sure, the Republicks know that Smith's a target in 2008. But we still can steal a march on them. It's easier for us to paint an unflattering picture of him if we're the only ones working on the canvas, by talking with our friends, neighbors, and co-workers one-on-one, door-by-door.

    We're never going to get an even break from corporate media when we confront an incumbent Senator at his offices or at his home. So forget that approach. Leave it to the fantasists.

  • Tracy Waters (unverified)
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    <h2>He's the ultimate flip-flopper, Gordon Smith! This week I sent two large envelopes to his Portland office filled with little girls sized PINK flip flops, upon which we'd written, "Blind faith in BAD Leaders is NOT patriotic!" & "Enough flip flopping, STOP the WAR NOW!" I'm launching the idea here in hopes others will do the same! Imagine a huge pile of flip flops allover his & other Democrats offices too?!</h2>
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