Key lawmakers, backed by party leaders, are drafting legislation that would effectively revoke the broad authority granted to the president in the days
Saddam Hussein was in power, and leave U.S. troops with a limited mission as they prepare to withdraw.
Officials said Thursday the precise wording of the measure remains unsettled. One version would restrict American troops in Iraq to fighting al-Qaida, training Iraqi army and police forces, maintaining Iraq’s territorial integrity and otherwise proceeding with the withdrawal of combat forces.
Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., intends to present the proposal to fellow Democrats next week, and he is expected to try to add the measure to anti-terrorism legislation scheduled to be debated later this month. Officials who described the strategy spoke only on condition of anonymity, noting that rank-and-file senators had not yet been briefed on the details.
Democrats were talking about this from November on outward, and probably even before except nobody was paying attention because we had Macaca Allen and whichever pinhead Jon Tester ran against to talk about. (Man, that was fun. Remember that? Hee.)
It’s smart strategy. It forces people once and for all to put their votes where their speeches are, to live up to all their “wah, I was lied to” and “wah, I was misled” and “wah, it was a mistake and I was craven and awful and akseereded of Fux News and quite the puss was I.” And the fact that they did it after trying it the Republicans’ way, after trying to get Bush to pay attention to the ISG and trying to get a nonbinding resolution passed and trying to play nice, just shows how smart they actually are.
Because when hack Republicans come back with, “Wah, support our golden
calf preznit, wah, you’re OMG MEEN!11!” somebody, preferably Nancy because I like imagining this said in her voice, can say:
“Listen, we tried to work with you. We tried to have bipartisan meetings but you all blew us off, we tried to get the adults involved but that shaved chimp you worship wouldn’t listen, we tried to give you gentle advice. All the while more soldiers died, you waved your little flags, and your kids went to Harvard instead of Sadr City, and you talked about sacrifice while the wounded recover in squalor and you cover yourself in their reflected glory.
“We’re done with this now. We’re done pretending you deserve anything but the harshest condemnation, the most severe measures of accountability. We’re done pretending you’re people to respect, people to listen to, people whose viewpoints we should consider. We’re done pretending you deserve anything but orange jumpsuits and the scorn of history. Wer’e done pretending you’re anything but a cautionary tale, a campfire story to terrify children. America is done with your war, and it’s done with you. We did what you wanted us to do there. That you screwed up the aftermath and can’t unscrew it is not something for which other Americans deserve to die.
“They’re coming home. And when they do, I hope they come right to your offices, and I hope they demand the answers you couldn’t give us. I hope they demand the apologies you’ve never been men enough to make. Because from this day forward, as far as we’re concerned, if you’re not apologizing, you’re not talking, and we’re not listening. Not anymore.”