A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

The Bush Administration will request the Congress exercise its Spending Power and increase the funding for the Iraq Debacle:

President Bush plans to ask Congress next month for up to $50 billion in additional funding for the war in Iraq, a White House official said yesterday, a move that appears to reflect increasing administration confidence that it can fend off congressional calls for a rapid drawdown of U.S. forces.

The request -- which would come on top of about $460 billion in the fiscal 2008 defense budget and $147 billion in a pending supplemental bill to fund the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq -- is expected to be announced after congressional hearings scheduled for mid-September featuring the two top U.S. officials in Iraq. Army Gen. David H. Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker will assess the state of the war and the effect of the new strategy the U.S. military has pursued this year.

. . . Most of the additional funding in a revised supplemental bill would pay for the current counteroffensive in Iraq. . . . The decision to seek about $50 billion more appears to reflect the view in the administration that the counteroffensive will last into the spring of 2008 and will not be shortened by Congress.

I believe this request provides Congress another chance to set an end date to the Iraq Debacle. The Congress must set a date certain for ending funding for Iraq Debacle operations. If they lack the political courage to say no to this funding request, the Congress must insist that this is the LAST request and that there will be no more funding for Iraq Debacle operations after a date certain. I suggest March 31, 2008. The Reid-Feingold framework:

Let me explain again - I ask for three things: First, announce NOW that the Democratic Congress will NOT fund the Iraq Debacle after a date certain. You pick the date. Whatever works politically. If October 2007 is the date Dems can agree to, then let it be then. If March 2008, then let that be the date; Second, spend the year reminding the President and the American People every day that Democrats will not fund the war past the date certain; Third, do NOT fund the Iraq Debacle PAST the date certain.

Some argue we will never have the votes for this. That McConnell will filibuster, that Bush will veto. To them I say I KNOW. But filbustering and vetoing does not fund the Iraq Debacle. Let me repeat, to end the war in Iraq, the Democratic Congress does not have to pass a single bill; they need only NOT pass bills that fund the Iraq Debacle.

But but but, defund the whole government? Defund the whole military? What if Bush does not pull out the troops? First, no, not defund the government, defund the Iraq Debacle. If the Republicans choose to shut down government in order to force the continuation of the Iraq Debacle, do not give in. Fight the political fight. We'll win. Second, defund the military? See answer to number one. Third, well, if you tell the American People what is coming for a year, and that Bush is on notice, that it will be Bush abandoning the troops in Iraq, we can win that politcal battle too.

Understand this, if you want to end the Iraq Debacle, this is the only way until Bush is not President. If you are not for this for ending the war, tell me what you do support. I think this is the only way. And if you shy away from the only way to end the Debacle, then you really are not for ending the war are you?

Tags: Reid-Feingold, WAR IN IRAQ (all tags)

Comments

45 Comments

Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

Congress should deny Bush's request for funding. Period. End of war.

by Russian Spy 2007-08-29 05:01AM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

They should. They won't. I propose an approach they MIGHT follow.

by Big Tent Democrat 2007-08-29 05:12AM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

It seems like denying this particular funding request is the worst of both worlds, because it doesn't necessarily end the war and it lets Bush point the finger at Congress for bad stuff that happens.  I prefer your approach.

by Steve M 2007-08-29 06:15AM | 0 recs
Reid-Feingold-Armando is an approach

the blogging community should unite around.

Bush is the gambler asking for 10 more dollars because the queen is coming to daddy to fill that inside straight, with no chance of losing... this time

by molly bloom 2007-08-29 06:21AM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

But your approach won't work.

Why don't you explain to the readers here where the money will come from to bring the troops home if you don't fund.

Explain how if you tell Bush you will fund, to say March 2008, and then not a dime more, how you will get him to sign that 'last' funding bill?

Can't explain that can you?

So your idea is null and void. It stands no chance. You support an idea that will never bring the troops home. Why don't you support one that has an actual chance?

by talex26 2007-08-29 07:37AM | 0 recs
As I said at Kos

This is a piss poor distortion of the proposal.

It is not Don't fund- it is No funds past X date.

Does the significance escape you? Can you explain the significance?

If fails to sign the last funding bill, he is the one defunding the troops. Yes it does require a certain amount of intestinal fortitude, that you apparantly do not have.

Tell me what's your plan?

by molly bloom 2007-08-29 08:17AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

My reply is at dkos to your post there.

by talex26 2007-08-29 08:23AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

He believes in the Obama plan of waiting for the Godot Republicans and a veto proof majority.

Which means hoping that the next President will withdraw from Iraq.

by Big Tent Democrat 2007-08-29 08:25AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

Which is more realistic than what you posit.

Your plan is a certain filibuster or veto. In other words DOA. But if you can explain how you can avoid a filibuster or veto and still fund the withdrawal of the troops please do.

by talex26 2007-08-29 08:35AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

A veto proof majority is realistic?

You still believe this?

by Big Tent Democrat 2007-08-29 08:48AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

It is more realistic than what you propose.

Let's put it this way. If a veto proof majority is unrealistic then that means that your plan will probably not have the votes needed to overcome a filibuster to fund a withdrawal. And for sure it will not have the votes to overcome a veto. How about that?

So if you think about it by your dismissing Repubs coming to our side and dismissing a veto proof majority you are dismissing your own plan. Think about that for a while. Without Repub votes neither your plan or a veto proof override as I support are possible.

So keep dismissing the Repubs because by doing so you dismiss yourself.

Unless of course you can explain how you will fund a withdrawal without facing a filibuster or veto. I've been waiting for months for that answer and it has never come and never will.

by talex26 2007-08-29 09:03AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

Either I'm way behind or there's a fundamental misunderstanding here.

Congress can set a date certain without ever getting Bush to sign off on the date certain.

All they have to do is approve his funding request and publicly proclaim, "We've given Bush his funding, but we're not giving him another dime, unless it's for a fully funded withdrawal."  Bush can't veto an announcement.

The only way to avoid the game of kicking the can down the road six months at a time is to get ahead of it.

by Steve M 2007-08-29 09:27AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

You fully understand the plan.

by Big Tent Democrat 2007-08-29 10:09AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

No he doesn't and neither do you. See my reply to him and see if you can rebut it. You still have not responded to my other point to you on this thread and I doubt that you respond to this one.

by talex26 2007-08-29 10:14AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

Um, since it is the plan I am advocating, I feel confident in saying he clearly does understand it.

the plan may be flawed but he just explained it.

by Big Tent Democrat 2007-08-29 10:16AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

Well what good is it to be able to explain a "flawed" plan? If it is "flawed" and won't/can't work then it is flawed to even discuss it little on believe in it.

This is a real world problem we have here that calls for real world solutions. This isn't like playing fantasy baseball.

by talex26 2007-08-29 10:22AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

Well, I do not think it is flawed. You do.

I am just stating that he is properly stating what the plan is.

You are the one claiming it is flawed.

I won't go around the mulberry bush again with you on this but I did want Steve to know that he properly understood the plan.

by Big Tent Democrat 2007-08-29 10:25AM | 0 recs
Of course you won't

"I won't go around the mulberry bush again" - Armando

Of course you won't because you can't intelligently respond to the points I bring up. And by not doing so you are by default admitting the plan is flawed and can't work.

You have explained any details to anyone. You haven't answered the what ifs. You haven't addressed realistically why congress would do this on the sneak. Even Feingold wouldn't do what you propose because he has integrity and more respect for the Constitution. He will do what it takes within the parameters of how the congress operates but he would never do what you want. Never.

The fact is that if this fantasy ever came to be Bush would spend the money for what it was appropriated for - ongoing operations - and come back for more latter. That is the bottomline here. Either way you cut it when you look at all the contingencies you must be prepared for and have an answer for there is a road block at every turn that will render your plan DOA. Certainly you can't be so blind as to not see that.

If you don't think that is the case then explain why not. And no - sticking you fingers in your ears and refusing to discuss substance won't cut it. Only ostriches stick their head in the sand.

The only one going around mulberry bush is you in your refusal to abandon a solution that is clearly flawed on more than one level.

Round and round you go - when you will stop no one knows.

by talex26 2007-08-29 10:50AM | 0 recs
Ha!

"the plan may be flawed but he just explained it." - Armando

Repeat: "the plan may be flawed"

Gosh! Freudian slip?

by talex26 2007-08-29 10:53AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

Yeah right!

What you advocate is for congress to do this on the sneak. First of all they wouldn't do that because it is not ethical.

Secondly , even if they did (and they won't) they would have to tell Bush right away so he could theoretically use the money to withdraw the troops. He wouldn't use the money for that and you know it. He will say the money was appropriated for ongoing operations and would use it as such and come time for the next funding he will have his hand out again and you are back to square on.

Understand?

Quit listening to Armando who avoids the details like I have been explaining in this thread. Any plan without details can sound good but as they say...

The devil is in the details.

by talex26 2007-08-29 10:11AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

There is nothing "on the sneak" about it at all.  Ideally, it would be on the front page of every newspaper in America.

Similarly, there is nothing unethical whatsoever about announcing that you will or won't pass an appropriation in the future.  Is it unethical when Bush makes a veto threat?  Frankly, I don't understand this accusation at all.

Bush would not be told that he has to use the $50 million for withdrawal.  Instead, he would be told that he can do whatever he wants with the money, but this is the last money he's getting for operations, and that no future funding requests will be considered unless the money is being requested for withdrawal.

by Steve M 2007-08-29 10:37AM | 0 recs
Say what?

I hope that was supposed to be funny and not just unintentionally so

by molly bloom 2007-08-29 10:40AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

Congress can easily authorize the money necessary to fund a withdrawal. That isn't even in question. We need to stop this war once and for all. If we stop the funding we stop the war.

by DoIT 2007-08-29 09:01AM | 0 recs
Re: As I said at Kos

Try thinking.

How do you fund a withdrawal? With a bill.

How do you get a bill passed? With enough votes to overcome a filibuster. Got the votes to do that? Not now.

But let's say you do get the votes to overcome a filibuster and pass a bill to fund a withdrawal. Do you have a 2/3 majority to overcome a Bush veto? Not now.

So given the above how can: "Congress can easily authorize the money necessary to fund a withdrawal".

If you want to stop this war you should think things through. If you have an "easy" way to defund the war and still have the money to bring the troops home and that can avoid a filibuster or a veto then let's hear it. Saying it is easy doesn't make it so. You must deal with the realities of the Constitution.

by talex26 2007-08-29 09:11AM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

How's that veto-proof majority coming?

by Big Tent Democrat 2007-08-29 08:17AM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

At least a veto proof majority has a glimmer of reality as being possible.

Your idea on the other hand has none as you can't even explain how it would work. I don't understand how as an otherwise intelligent person you can try selling something that you know won't work and can't even explain how it will work.

Can you imagine if you were to be able to present your idea to a congressional committee and not be able to answer the questions I have asked? What are you going to tell them? "I'm not going to discuss substance with you"? :)

by talex26 2007-08-29 08:31AM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

Explain that glimmer of reality please.

by Big Tent Democrat 2007-08-29 08:49AM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

http://www.mydd.com/comments/2007/8/29/8 5554/1500/23#23

by talex26 2007-08-29 09:18AM | 0 recs
I think this is the last stop

on the not funding express. The Democrats need to either act now or forever own this war.

by andgarden 2007-08-29 06:34AM | 0 recs
Re: I think this is the last stop

Lets hope for the best and prepare for the worst. Keep in mind the Mcgovern Amendment and the Church -Cooper Amendment were offered in 1970 and the war dragged on to....

by molly bloom 2007-08-29 06:40AM | 0 recs
Re: I think this is the last stop

Hey andgarden! Rather than be a sneaky little troll rater why don't you answer the questions and points I have made in this diary? What's the matter you can't answer them but yet you are still going to cling to a fantasy?

I ask you this. If you are going to cling to a fantasy how can you really say you are supporting the withdrawal of the troops?

by talex26 2007-08-29 08:51AM | 0 recs
You read but don't understand

Through months of infuriating experience, I've come to believe that the not understanding is intentional.

You are like a mosquito that just won't go away.

by andgarden 2007-08-29 08:54AM | 0 recs
Re: You read but don't understand

Bull.

Neither you or anyone else can explain how your plan provides the money to bring the troops home and overcomes a filibuster or veto that would stop it.

The reality is that if you tell Bush that you are going to fund until March 2008 and then not a penny more - he will veto the bill - just as he voted the last timeline bill.

That makes your plan DOA.

Keep playing your games - it's only our troops lives that are at stake.

by talex26 2007-08-29 09:17AM | 0 recs
Claiming that I'm somehow endangering

the troops gets you a zero.

by andgarden 2007-08-29 09:30AM | 0 recs
Re: You read but don't understand

You are the one who doesn't understand.

Try reading my posts here and answer each point I made. I won't hold my breath.

by talex26 2007-08-29 10:23AM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

I appreciate your suggestion but it just doesn't set well with me. It's not that I am opposed to what you suggest. And you may very well be right about what is possible. But I have decided that I will take a stand and reject any compromise with Shrub and the war. Democrats need to have backbones and it is time that we stood up to Shrub even if our leadership won't.

No more funding for this heinous war. Nada, zilch, not another frickin dime!

by DoIT 2007-08-29 06:35AM | 0 recs
This is not a compromise at all

Its also has the virtue of being possible.

by molly bloom 2007-08-29 06:42AM | 0 recs
Re: Progressive think tank article

Most U.S. troops can be withdrawn safely from Iraq in roughly one year and the Bush administration should begin planning the pullout immediately, according to a study released Wednesday.

With the exception mostly of two brigades of about 8,000 troops who would remain in the touchy Kurdish region in the north for a year to guard against conflict with Turkey, the U.S. troops would be moved to Kuwait initially, says the study by the Center for American Progress, a self-described "progressive think tank" headed by John D. Podesta, a former chief of staff to former President Clinton.

A brigade and an air wing of some 70 to 80 planes would remain in the Persian Gulf country indefinitely. Meanwhile, the withdrawal would give the United States leeway to add 20,000 troops to the 25,000 in Afghanistan trying to counter Taliban and Al Qaeda forces.

How fast the troops depart from Iraq and go home depends largely on how much essential equipment goes along with the withdrawal, according to the study.

in Light of Iraqi Political Stalemate The troops could be out of Iraq in no more than three months if the equipment is left behind, a course not proposed in the study.

On the other hand, "if the United States does not set a specific timetable, our military forces and our overall national security will remain hostage to events on the ground in Iraq," the report said.

Even worse, an all-out civil war could compel a withdrawal of the U.S. troops, now numbering about 160,000, in three months' time, which would force leaving valuable equipment behind and preventing control of an orderly exodus, the report said.

The Bush administration is expected to disclose next month how large a withdrawal it contemplates and over what period of time. No consensus on when to begin and how deeply to cut has developed.

Lawrence Korb, a former Pentagon official who specialized in manpower and logistics there from 1981 to 1985, said in an interview: "It is essential that the military begin planning for a phased withdrawal from Iraq now so it can be safely completed within 10 to 12 months."

Korb, one of the authors of the report, said withdrawal proposals have varied from three months to four years.

The center's recommendation for withdrawal over a period of 10 to 12 months is based on consultation with military planners and logistics experts, the report said.

It proposed removing two combat brigades from Iraq a month while simultaneously reducing a proportional number of non-combat support personnel.

If the plan is adopted and U.S. combat units deployed in Iraq were not replaced as they went home the Bush administration could conclude the withdrawal by the end of next July "and with much more care than they did the invasion and occupation," the report said.

"The time for half-measures and experiments is over; it is now time for a logistically sound strategic redeployment," the report concluded.

by BDM 2007-08-29 08:18AM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

Fine by me.

This is a position for those who will not vote that way.

by Big Tent Democrat 2007-08-29 08:16AM | 0 recs
If Feingold or someone in the senate

and Kucinich in the house, move for a "No more funding, Nada. Out by December 2007." position, then the "Date Certain, $25bn funding. Out by March 2008" could later be pitched as a "compromise" approach.

$20bn for the  final operations. $5bn for pulling out (enough?).

I know what I'd do if I were a US senator.

by NeuvoLiberal 2007-08-29 09:23AM | 0 recs
I am with you 100% on this fight, BTW

I was in fact thinking of suggesting you to take the lead on this a few months ago when the supplemental passed.

by NeuvoLiberal 2007-08-29 09:31AM | 0 recs
Re: I am with you 100% on this fight, BTW

There is a letter signed by close to 80 House members that says exactly that.

by Big Tent Democrat 2007-08-29 10:14AM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

I'm not buying it.  This is what happens in your scenario.

A) we say no more funding after Mar 31 so we have 600+ more dead and 5000 more injured soldiers

B) The pentagon puts off buying a few fighter-bombers and puts the money toward Iraq, and Bush finds his dollars to fight through the end of his term

C) Hillary or Obama or Edwards hems and haws and announces a full pullout by the end of 2009

not another dollar more for the war.  And yes, it is worth shutting down the government, especially the bloated military budget, to end this debacle.

Democrats should announce a bill to take $10 Billion from the current Iraq spending bill and trnasfer it into Civil engineers and national guard support for the areas of Louisiana and Missisippi hit by Katrina.

by brooklyngreenie 2007-08-29 10:47AM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

If you can get them to agree to that, I am with you 100%.

by Big Tent Democrat 2007-08-29 12:01PM | 0 recs
Re: A Date Certain For Ending The Iraq Debacle

Does anyone know if all the major candidates and congressional leadership will be pushing for this?

by bruh21 2007-08-29 01:38PM | 0 recs

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