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Friday, February 02, 2007

The War........ of Resolutions

For all of us that signed The Pledge and have been keeping an eye on how the issue is playing itself out....the new McCain resolution which, thanks to Hugh Hewitt I will be posting the text of below, seems to be the lesser of two evils.

Keep in mind, these resolutions are non binding, therefore a waste of time, but the Mccain resolution guarantees that any attempt to cut funding for our troops is out.

Text of the Mccain Resolution:


1st Session

S. RES. __________________________

Expressing the sense of the Senate that the Commander of Multinational Forces-Iraq and all United States personnel under his command should receive from Congress the full support necessary to carry out the United States mission in Iraq


Mc. McCain (for himself, Mr. Lieberman, Mr. Graham, Mr. Cornyn, Mrs. Hutchison, Mr. Domenici, Mr. Thune, Mr. Hatch, and Mr. Roberts) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on __________________.


Expressing the sense of the Senate that the Commander of Multinational Forces-Iraq and all United States personnel under his command should receive from Congress the full support necessary to carry out the United States mission in Iraq.

Whereas more than 137,000 members of the Armed Forces of the United States are currently serving in Iraq, like thousands of others since March 2003, with the bravery and professionalism consistent with the finest traditions of the Armed Forces of the United States, and deserve the support of all Americans.

Whereas past mistakes in United States strategy, aggression by various groups that reject peace, and other difficulties have contributed to a dire security situation in Iraq characterized by insurgent activity and sectarian violence;

Whereas a failed state in Iraq would present a threat to regional and world peace, and the long-term security interests of the United States are best served by an Iraq that can sustain, govern, and defend itself;

Whereas no amount of additional United States forces in Iraq can effect this outcome in Iraq unless the people and Government of Iraq take difficult political steps toward reconciliation;

Whereas the establishment of a basic level of security in Baghdad and throughout Iraq is an essential pre-condition for reconciliation and political and economic progress in Iraq;

Whereas these steps must include the fulfillment of military, political, and economic commitments that the Government of Iraq has made to the United States and to the people of Iraq;

Whereas Iraqi political leaders must show visible progress toward meeting specific benchmarks, including –

(1) deploying a significant number of new Iraqi security forces to partner with United States units in securing Baghdad;

(2) assuming responsibility for security in all provinces in Iraq in a timely manner;

(3) disarming individual militias as circumstances warrant and ensuring that security forces are accountable to the central government and loyal to the constitution of Iraq;

(4) ensuring equitable distribution of the resources of the Government of Iraq without regard to the sect or ethnicity of recipients;

(5) enacting and implementing legislation to ensure that the oil resources of Iraq benefit Sunni Arabs, Shia Arabs, Kurds, and other Iraqi citizens in an equitable manner;

(6) building an effective, independent judiciary that will uphold the rule of law and ensure equal protection under the law for all citizens of Iraq;

(7) pursuing all those who engage in violence or threaten the security of the Iraqi population regardless of sect or political affiliation;

(8) enacting and implementing legislation that reforms the de-Ba’athification process in Iraq;

(9) conducting provincial elections in Iraq;

(10) ensuring a fair process for amending the constitution of Iraq; and

(11) expending promised funds to provide basic services and employment opportunities for all Iraqis, including a $10,000,000,000 fund for reconstruction, and ensuring that these funds reach both Sunni and Shia areas, including Sunni neighborhoods in Baghdad and largely Sunni Anbar Province;

Whereas the United States Ambassador to Iraq and the Commander of Multinational Forces-Iraq should report each month to the Senate on the progress being made by Iraqis toward achieving the benchmarks specified in the preceding clause and on their own progress in achieving their missions in Iraq;

Whereas leaders in the Administration of President George W. Bush and Congress have made it clear to the Iraqi leadership that the commitment of the United States in Iraq is not open-ended and that, if the Government of Iraq does not follow through on its promises, it will lose the support of its own people and the people of the United States;

Whereas the moderate countries of the Middle East, and other countries around the world, have an interest in a successful conclusion to the war in Iraq and should increase their constructive assistance toward the achievement of this end;

Whereas over the past year, leaders in the Administration of President George W. Bush and Congress, as well as recognized experts outside government, acknowledged that the situation in Iraq was deteriorating and required a change in strategy; and

Whereas Lieutenant General David Petraeus has been unanimously confirmed by the Senate as the new Coalition commander in Iraq and given the mission of implementing a new strategy for Iraq designed to bring security to Iraq and pave the way for political and economic progress in Iraq: Now, therefore be it

1 Resolved, That it is the sense of the Senate that –

2 (1) Congress should ensure that General David

3 Petraeus, the Commander of Multinational Forces-

4 Iraq, and all United States personnel under his com-

5 mand, have the resources they consider necessary to

6 carry out their mission on behalf of the United

7 States in Iraq, and

8 (2) the Government of Iraq must make visible,

9 concrete progress toward meeting the political, eco-

10 nomic, and military benchmarks enumerated in the

11 preamble to this Resolution.

Then we have Warners resolution which is also causing a stir in the latest "war of resolutions."

The alternate resolution proposed by Warner, which has been toned down, has some Democrats up in arms, which in and of itself, means it must be better than the other resolutions that have been tossed around over the last few days.

Senate Democratic leaders who decided to back a Republican resolution against President Bush's Iraq war plan in hopes of winning broad bipartisan support ran into stiff resistance yesterday from an unexpected quarter -- fellow Democrats.


The compromise resolution states that the Senate disagrees with the president's plan and urges Bush to instead consider all other options for achieving his strategic goals.

Democratic defections would probably not prevent the legislation from passing the Senate, provided that the measure gets to a final vote over a threatened filibuster by Republicans. But defections would deprive Democratic leaders of a strong united vote against Bush's decision to boost troop levels in Iraq by 21,500.

Two Democratic senators, Christopher J. Dodd (Conn.) and Russell Feingold (Wis.), came out forcefully against the compromise, saying the newly worded resolution goes too far toward GOP positions. Dodd called it "essentially an endorsement of the status quo" in Iraq, while Feingold denounced it as "a deal with the devil."

"This is the United States Senate. This is not some city council somewhere," Dodd said. "It seems to me sending something down that engages the president, that forces the administration to pay attention is something we ought to be considering."

Several other Democrats said they remain undecided; many of them are pushing binding legislation to cap troop levels, force a new vote to authorize the war or begin bringing troops home.

For days, two groups of senators had backed competing resolutions of opposition: a sharply worded version by Sens. Joseph R. Biden Jr. (D-Del.) and Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.), and a more conciliatory resolution by Sen. John W. Warner (R-Va.). The stalemate was broken Wednesday night when Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) backed a revised version of Warner's resolution.

Democratic leaders noted that the compromise puts them in a far stronger position to defeat a Republican-led filibuster against the resolution when it is brought to a vote next week. The first showdown will come Monday afternoon, when the Senate will vote on whether to proceed to the debate. At least seven Republicans, and possibly more than 10, could back the compromise, worked out by Warner and Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl M. Levin (D-Mich.). If, as expected, Democratic opponents of the resolution side with their leaders to break a filibuster, the measure would have close to the necessary 60 votes, but it is not there yet.

If the Senate does break the filibuster, only to see half a dozen Democrats oppose the resolution, Democratic leaders could still pass the measure but would be deprived of the broad, bipartisan vote they want to send a clear signal to the White House.

Gen. George W. Casey Jr., who led the war effort in Iraq before being nominated as Army chief of staff, confirmed that the 21,500 troops in Bush's plan is not the total, as indicated in yesterday's CBO report. In written answers to the Senate Armed Services Committee, he said that "certain additional combat support and combat service support capabilities" would be required. They include "logistical enablers, intelligence assets, military police, and a command/control node," although the numbers would be "minimal."

Towards the bottom of the article it states:

But some Democrats took offense at equating a cutoff of funds with the endangerment of troops and said it would bind their hands in the coming months.

They are more worried about having their "hands tied" than they are about endangering the troops.

Once again proving they don't like facts when they do not match their own political agenda.

Hugh Hewitt's comments on the new McCain resolution:

I have read the text of th e new draft resolution (text as of this afternoon below) from a group of senators including McCain / Lieberman / Graham / Cornyn/ Hutchinson/ Domenici/ Thune/ Hatch/ Roberts, and while it retains the absurd "benchmarks" language, it is generally sound and not defeatist in the least. It does not threaten explicitly or by implication to cut and run on the Iraqis if the battle for the country's future remains difficult. It deserves the support of all Republicans and those Democrats serious about victory the war and clear-eyed about the enemy. Senators Warner and Collins should immediately abandon their support for, as Howard Dean put it earlier today, the Levin-Warner resolution repudiating the president's policy and sign on to the GOP resolution.

In a perfect world there would be NO resolutions, but since many are so worried about their "political" careers rather than our soldiers lives or encouraging our enemies, this is a compromise that might have to be made.

I understand the Democrats made campaign promises that they simply could not keep and their base is angry. I do not have much sympathy for the base though because during the whole campaign before the November elections, the base never asked the one question that would have told all . "How?" Never once did I hear the Democratic base ask those that were to be elected, "how do you propose to do it?".

They sat back, smiled and said, "The Democrats will get us out of there"....but never asked them how they would accomplish this. They also never considered the ramifications of defeat.

Fact is, any resolution that is passed must be able to bypass a filibuster and any resolution that is defeatists in nature cannot do so... because even the Democrats realize what their supporters cannot seem to grasp.... we cannot afford to lose.

The ramifications of giving up and the damage it can do and the potential of causing a regional war have been stated by every leading expert and although there are skeptics about whether this new strategy will work, no one has offered an alternate solution for "success".

That is the bottomline. All the retreat and defeat measures are not a plan for success, they are geared for surrender and surrender is unacceptable with the stakes so high.

The Washington Times on the Warner resolution:

A bipartisan majority in the Senate yesterday united behind a firm "stay the course" resolution on the war in Iraq, despite searing public criticism from both sides in Congress over President Bush's handling of the war.

The resolution is critical of the war's execution and condemns any effort by Mr. Bush to send reinforcements to the region. In the measure, the Senate also promises not to cut off funding for the increasingly unpopular war.

"Congress should not take any action that will endanger United States military forces in the field, including the elimination or reduction of funds for troops in the field, as such an action with respect to funding would undermine their safety or harm their effectiveness in pursuing their assigned missions," says the resolution, authored mainly by Sen. John W. Warner, Virginia Republican.

Although backers say they are deeply dissatisfied with the execution of the war, the resolution says that the United States "should continue vigorous operations" in parts of Iraq and that early withdrawal "would present a threat to regional and world peace."


But the nonbinding resolution was embraced yesterday by several key members of both parties, including Sens. Joseph R. Biden Jr., Delaware Democrat, and Chuck Hagel, Nebraska Republican. Both men, like Mr. Warner, voted in 2002 to go to war with Iraq. Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin, a Michigan Democrat who opposed the war, also signed on to the Warner resolution.

Although both sides agree that there is a majority of support to approve the resolution, there is far less certainty about whether it has the 60 votes needed to overcome any filibuster.

Approval of the resolution will have no real effect on war policy because it's nonbinding, said Sen. Jon Kyl, Arizona Republican, adding that its criticism of the administration's policy serves only to undermine the war effort.

We are not simply speaking to the president," Mr. Kyl said. "Everyone else in the world will get that message. ... Those are the words that will resonate around the world."

One again I am going to list the contact information for the GOP senators and congressman..... keep the pressure up, if it is between the lesser of two evils, then we must encourage them to filibuster ANY resolution that resounds with defeat.

The GOP leadership n the House:

Congressman John Boehner: (202) 225-6205 Fax (202) 225-0704. E-mail here

Congressman Roy Blunt: (202)-225-6536 Fax (202)-225-5604 E-mail here.

Congressman Eric Cantor: (202)-225-2815 Fax (202)-225-0011. (No e-mail available.)

The leadership and key GOP members n the Senate:

Senator Mitch McConnell: 202-224-2541 Fax: 202-224-2499. E-mail here.

Senator Trent Lott: Phone: 202-224-6253 Fax: (202)-224-2262 E-mail here.

Senator Jon Kyl: Phone: (202) 224-4521 Fax: (202) 224-2207 E-mail here.

Senator John Ensign: (202)-224-6244 Fax: 202-228-2193. E-mail here.

Senator John McCain: Phone: (202)-224-2235 Fax (202)-228-2862. E-mail here.

Senator John Warner: Phone: (202) 224-2023 Fax: (202) 224-6295. E-mail here.

Senator John Cornyn: Phone:202-224-2934 Fax: 202-228-2856. E-mail here.

Senator Pat Roberts: Phone (202) 224-4774 E-mail here.

Senator Gordon Smith: Phone: 202-224-3753 Fax: 202-228-3997. E-mail here.

Senator Norm Coleman: Phone: 202-224-5641 Fax: 202-224-1152.E-mail here

Email, call and fax these people. We are being heard and we cannot let up for a second.

Have you signed the pledge yet? Have you emailed the senators and congressman?

Let me remind you what the NRSC said in their subscription only "Roll Call":

The Web site — — boasted around 30,000 signers as of Monday, and that’s a cause of concern for Senate Republicans.

NRSC spokeswoman Rebecca Fisher said Monday the committee is taking Hewitt’s effort seriously, indicating the NRSC is concerned about the practical implications it might have on fundraising and grass-roots support for GOP Senate candidates.

“Of course we worry about the effect something like this has on online fundraising,” Fisher said. “As we explore different methods of fundraising, we have to be sure that we can effectively take advantage of every available avenue. And with a response like this blog has received, we take notice.”

They understand the GOP base is serious and that any defeatists resolutions that any GOP senator or congressman vote for will cost them supporters, votes and contributions.