Monday, July 9, 2007

Pete Domenici Supports Ken Salazar's Bill To Implement the Recommendations of The Iraq Study Group

Last week Senator Pete Domenici moved away from the President's stay put and die in Iraq strategy. He told the New York Times

“I am unwilling to continue our current strategy,” Domenici, R-N.M., told his constituents during a speech in Albuquerque. The United States needs a strategy “that will move our troops out of combat operations and on the path to coming home,” he said.

Domenici placed blame on the Iraqi government for “failing to make even modest progress to help Iraq itself or to merit the sacrifices being made by our men and women in uniform.”
Domenici told the Times that he would not support immediate withdrawal. Instead he would support S. 1545 -- A bill to implement the recommendations of the Iraq Study Group which, according to, is currently working its way through the Senate Foreign Relation's Committee. Referred to by some as the Salazar Distraction, S.1545 is said to set
unmeetable conditions for the withdrawal of US troops, thus guaranteeing we stay in Iraq forever while the “maverick Republicans” get to have it both ways: They can tell their constituents they voted for withdrawal when in fact they voted against it.
You can read the bill by following the links and figure out if it really is a distraction or a viable alternative. PhoenixWoman at FDL and McJoan at the DailyKos call it a distraction. Sen. Salazar(D-CO) says it has merit. I say read the bill and make up your own mind.

The bill is Sponsored by Sen. Ken Salazar (D-CO) and co sponsored by Sen. Lamar Alexander [R, TN]; Sen. Robert Bennett [R, UT]; Sen. Robert Casey [D, PA]; Sen. Susan Collins [R, ME]; Sen. Judd Gregg [R, NH]; Sen. Blanche Lincoln [D, AR]; Sen. Mark Pryor [D, AR] and Sen. John Sununu [R, NH].

While I agree that Salazar's bill doesn't do the job of pulling troops out of Iraq, it seems to me that Democrats should be courting the above named senators instead of pissing on them as PhoenixWoman and McJoan apparently want us to do, but then I can count to 60. Clean up the Salazar bill, give it some teeth, and then push it. It is the only bill that has the remotest chance of passage. None of the four amendments to the 2008 Defense Authorization Bill proposed by the Senate leadership has a ghost of a chance. I told you Blue Girl, I am tired of the kabuki dance -- both on the right and the left. I don't want any more of our troops to die needlessly. I will accept no substitutes for effective action.