Monday, March 26, 2007

Congress to Surrender in Iraq

The House of Representatives passed a bill on Friday by a margin of 218-212 for funding of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but which also includes the provision for the withdrawal of all combat troops by September 1, 2008 at the latest. It now appears the Senate will pass a similar bill with the goal of removing troops by March 31, 2008, but without making it a requirement. A compromise bill between the House and Senate could result in a set "surrender" date for the President to veto, as he has promised to do. Unfortunately, the Pentagon has estimated it will run out of funding for the wars by next month without the $100 billion in emergency funds.

The House bill may have been a political victory for Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Democratic majority, but certainly it will amount to nothing in the long term because a two-thirds majority vote to override a Presidential veto is highly unlikely in the closely divided Congress. A new funding bill will ultimately be passed minus any set dates for troop withdrawal, and the war in Iraq will continue to its inevitable Vietnam-like conclusion.

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