Yesterday, 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?