The U.S. Senate on Tuesday endorsed a March 31, 2008, target date for withdrawing American combat troops from Iraq, moving Congress a step closer to a showdown with President George W. Bush over the war.By a vote of 50-48, the Senate defeated an amendment that would have stricken the withdrawal language from a $121.6 billion bill that mostly would fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. A final vote on the bill is expected later this week.
I believe the amendment would’ve also stricken the pork from the bill – I’ll have to double check that, though.
Senator Lieberman and Senator Pryor voted for the amendment. While I disagree with him on other subjects, both deserve our thanks (click the links) for giving our soldiers priority over politics. Republican Senators Gordon Smith and Chuck Hagel could learn a lesson from them (both voted for defeat). Since Senator Ben Nelson survived his reelection bid, he also voted for defeat (hey, he got his 6 years). Please note: Senator Enzi (WY) was unable to vote because he was attending to a sick family member.
Click here for the list of votes (see how your Senators did).
Now, don’t get too angry. Even if the Victory Senators had succeeded, while sending a much better message, the bill would’ve gone to the Conference Committee (where the select House and Senate members hash out a compromise on changed bills), the Democrat-dominated committee (they’re in the majority) would have, assuredly, stuck the language back in. The only result would have been a longer delay prior to President Bush’s veto, which would also further delay getting necessary funding to our military in the combat zone. Note: funding runs out on April 15th!