Longer Leaves for Troops Blocked
Senate Bill Short of 60 Votes Needed
Washington Post Staff Writers Thursday, September 20, 2007; Page A01
Senate Republicans yesterday rejected a bipartisan proposal to lengthen the home leaves of U.S. troops fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, derailing a measure that war opponents viewed as one of the best chances to force President Bush to accelerate a redeployment of forces.
The proposal, sponsored by Sens. James Webb (D-Va.) and Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.), failed on a 56 to 44 vote, with 60 votes needed for passage -- a tally that was virtually identical to a previous vote in July. A last-minute campaign by the Defense Department and the White House to kill the measure won over Sen. John W. Warner (R-Va.), an influential voice on defense policy who had voted with Webb and Hagel in July.
Interesting to me that we drove out the Republican control of Congress over (among other things) the Iraq war and are disinterested in holding the remaining Republican feet to the fire for their obstructionist policy.
Not a damned thing is able to get through the Senate (and that essentially means government) because that august body can't get nine Republican Senators on board to vote for cloture and allow bills to proceed--nor will they allow the override of a veto.
So, we essentially have the Bush pseudo-mandate we had before the 2006 mid terms.
Bush approval is at 29%, congressional approval at 11% and the Democrats are frozen in the headlights. Harry Reid is so ineffective and thunderstruck by a case of leadership failure that I'm not at all sure the Democrats are going to prevail in 2008---
---or deserve to.