“We don’t have a veto-proof Congress,” said Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader.
Representative Steny H. Hoyer of Maryland, the House Democratic majority leader, said the new bill was still being assembled, but he acknowledged the political reality facing Democrats. “The president has made it very clear that he is not going to sign timelines,” said Mr. Hoyer. “We can’t pass timelines over his veto.”
The concession to the president was proving so difficult for the Democratic leadership that by this afternoon, the lawmakers had not yet publicly acknowledged that the timelines would disappear. House Democrats were preparing to advance two separate measures, to enable antiwar lawmakers to support popular domestic spending but not the money for the war. House Democrats were to review the proposal later this evening, but lawmakers were already predicting that many would not support the war spending.
Under the new plan approved by Democratic leaders, Congress would send Mr. Bush the money for the war and include a series of benchmarks that attracted 52 votes in the Senate last week. The Iraqi government could lose some foreign aid if it fails to show sufficient progress but the president would be given the authority to suspend any penalties.
...The Democratic leaders’ concession infuriated one of their own, Senator Russell D. Feingold of Wisconsin, who failed last week in his attempt to win passage of a measure that would have cut off money for the war next spring.
“I cannot support a bill that contains nothing more than toothless benchmarks and that allows the president to continue what may be the greatest foreign policy blunder in our nation’s history,” he said. “There has been a lot of tough talk from members of Congress about wanting to end this war, but it looks like the desire for political comfort won out over real action. Congress should have stood strong, acknowledged the will of the American people, and insisted on a bill requiring a real change of course in Iraq.”
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Color me shocked
"Democrats Drop Troop Pullout Dates From Iraq Bill"