The Peace Team & The Congressional Record – 2007-01-09 22:47:36
PEACE TRAIN to DC
TIME: Tuesday, January 23, 9:00am
LOCATION: Amtrak Sacramento Station
401 I St., Sacramento, CA (916) 225-5176.
At least 20 confirmed travelers plan to qualify for a 20% Amtrak group discount rate of $246.40 pp round trip coach from Sacramento to Washington DC to attend the Jan 27-29 events and to visit with Representatives in congress.
Full details at PEACE TRAIN to DC Website:
The All New And Improved Staying The Course,
Now With More LIES
• ACTION PAGE: http://www.peaceteam.net/no_escalation.php
Here are three toll-free numbers you can use to call your own members of Congress right now, 800-828-0498, 800-459-1887 or 800-614-2803, and tell them NO ESCALATION.
You will never go broke betting that George Bush is not telling the truth. He may drive the entire rest of the economy into a ditch with his fiscal policy, but if you are banking on the fact that every word out of his mouth is a pathological falsehood, and if there were a bookie to take such wagers, you would always come out ahead.
So when he tells us that he has not yet made up his mind about what to do about Iraq, after a month long public song and dance about getting all available input, put all your chips on yet another great, big honking lie.
George Bush decided to send more troops to Iraq months ago and not a thing has changed his mind since. For all his babble about conditions on the ground, and listening to the generals on the GROUND, he has just canned or reassigned all who opposed his proposed new military escalation in Iraq, and is instead importing a guy from on the WATER from the other side of the globe.
He literally had to look that far to find an ambitious sycophant craven enough to sign onto his increasingly desperate folly. What a swell choice for desert guerilla warfare, a naval commander.
Brace yourselves folks. There is as much chance of Bush having a change of heart as there is of a rattlesnake starting to feel remorse for biting you. This is the White House version of some thuggish “whatcha gonna do?”
They have ALREADY deployed extra troops to Kuwait (Gates’ first act as defense secretary) with the transparent intent of shifting them into Iraq. Congress is going to have to put their foot down and put it down hard. They question is exactly how.
We start from the premise that to put a runaway freight train, such as our current sociopath in chief, into reverse, first we must bring it to a halt. There are resolutions possibly pending to demand redeployment of the troops or to cut off funding for the war. We would support any of them.
But of course Bush will ignore Congress.
The problem is that if Congress attempts to restrict the way funds are spent, Bush will dash off another diametrically perverse signing statement and assert authority to do the opposite anyway. And as for troop deployments, he will laugh off any attempt by Congress to tell him how to run HIS war.
Therefore we propose strategically that there FIRST be a resolution opposing an increase in troops in Iraq, to draw a line in the sand, hopefully to preempt, but at least to respond directly to the announcement we all know is coming. While other resolutions may garner large support, this is a resolution that could potentially result in an enormously lopsided vote.
Even Oliver North and George Will are speaking out against Bush’s surge insanity. Then WHEN Bush defies the unanimous will of Congress, which he WILL, we will have set the stage for immediate consideration of impeachment, which is the only ultimate cure. Once the battle lines are clearly drawn, George Bush AGAINST us all, everything else will follow from there.
How foolish the Democrats have been in publicly giving away their remedies up front. Impeachment is off the table they say. They won’t cut of the funds they say for fear of being seen as not supporting the troops.
Pelosi must have said it a dozen times on Meet The Press this weekend, “but we support the troops, but we support the troops.” So Bush ships the troops anyway, and then accuses the Democrats of not supporting them after they are already there. What a loser’s game.
It all comes down to fear. The Democrats are AFRAID that the American people will not back them. They have a tenuous edge in the Senate, and even in the house they have potted plants like the newly elected Nancy Boyda who actually said about increasing troops, “[the American People] should have thought about that before they voted for President Bush not once, but twice.”
What’s the matter with her? Boy, does she need to hear from us (if you live in Kansas)!! They ALL need to hear from us, in numbers like never before. That is the only antidote against their own political cowardice. Our voices.
• ACTION PAGE:: http://www.peaceteam.net/no_escalation.php
If you have ever submitted an action page in your life, submit this one. If you have ever sent out an alert to a friend, the people need you this week. If you have ever put up an action page on your own web site, now is the time. We need the ENTIRE Congress to stand up to Bush just one time on SOMETHING.
After that, AFTER Congress finally reasserts its constitutional and rightful power, then all the other resolutions will come naturally. And then we can get down to the real and most urgent business of this country, impeaching the president and vice-president before they self-destruct and take us all with them.
Please take action NOW, so we can win all victories that are supposed to be ours.
To be added to the list go to http://www.peaceteam.net/in.htm
Congress Should Vote on Troop Surge in Iraq, Kennedy Says
Jonathan Allen / Congressional Record
WASHINGTON (January 9, 2007) — Declaring that “American values and America’s role in the world are all at stake,” Sen. Edward M. Kennedy on Tuesday said he will lead an effort to block funding for a troop surge in Iraq “unless and until Congress approves” President Bush’s plan for such a deployment.
In a speech at the National Press Club, Kennedy, D-Mass., the No. 2 Democrat on the Armed Services Committee, said he and Rep. Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., would introduce legislation later in the day aimed at forcing Bush to gain congressional consent for his new Iraq strategy, which the president plans to unveil in a televised address to the nation Wednesday night.
Bush is expected to announce that roughly 20,000 more soldiers and Marines will be sent to augment the 140,000 troops now serving in Iraq. He also is expected to seek at least $100 billion in supplemental fiscal 2007 war spending next month.
“The president’s speech must be the beginning – not the end – of a new national discussion of our policy in Iraq,” Kennedy said. “Congress must have a genuine debate over the wisdom of the president’s plan. Let us hear the arguments for it and against it. Then let us vote on it in the light of day.”
Asked whether the supplemental spending request would provide a vehicle for his legislative proposal, Kennedy replied, “The horse will be out of the barn by the time we get there.” Although the request is expected to reach Capitol Hill next month, Congress typically spends months working on such spending proposals. Kennedy said immediate action is needed to forestall the troop surge.
Bush has been meeting with small groups of senators and House members to hear their views on Iraq. He has received a decidedly mixed response, even from members of his own party.
On Tuesday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said he would support the president’s “new effort to quiet Baghdad and to give us a chance to succeed. I think that’s what the American people would like to have.”
He dismissed Kennedy’s effort to gain a new congressional vote on Iraq. “I think it is inappropriate for the Congress to try to micromanage, in effect, the tactics in a military conflict,” McConnell said. “I don’t think Congress has the authority to do it.”
White House Press Secretary Tony Snow insisted Tuesday that Bush’s speech will not mark the end of his discussions with lawmakers. “What you have is a framework for moving forward,” Snow said. “And within that framework, there are going to be plenty of opportunities for people to talk and to share their opinions. And the president has made it clear from the very first consultations with Democrats and Republicans that he intends to have more talks.”
Kennedy described parallels between the potential surge of troops in Iraq and repeated troop escalation in Vietnam, which failed to forestall defeat in that war more than three decades ago.
“In Vietnam, the White House grew increasingly obsessed with victory, and increasingly divorced from the will of the people and any rational policy,” Kennedy said. “There was no military solution to that war. But we kept trying to find one anyway. In the end, 58,000 Americans died in the search for it. Echoes of that disaster are all around us today. Iraq is George Bush’s Vietnam.”
Troop escalation “would be a policy of desperation built on denial and fantasy,” Kennedy said. “It would compound the original misguided decision to invade Iraq.”
Kennedy said the 2002 resolution (PL 107-243) that Congress enacted authorizing Bush to take military action in Iraq was premised on a series of facts that either no longer exist, such as Saddam Hussein’s repressive regime , or else proved untrue, such as the presence of weapons of mass destruction.
Whether Congress can prevent troop escalation in Iraq is a subject of substantial debate on Capitol Hill, both between the political parties and within the Democratic majority.
For instance, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Joseph R. Biden Jr. of Delaware, has said that an effort to limit the number of troops that Bush could commit to Iraq would violate the Constitution, which makes the president commander in chief.
But Kennedy noted that the Constitution also reserves certain powers to Congress. “We have the war-making power and the power of the purse,” he said. “Is the coequal branch of Congress supposed to hide itself?”
No matter where they stand on the war or its conduct, congressional Democrats take care to distinguish between policy decisions and support of the troops themselves. Kennedy was no exception, saying early in his speech, “ We will always support our troops in harm’s way.”
>© 2006 Congressional Quarterly
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