Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Webb Amendment Fails
I wrote recently of Sen. Jim Webb's amendment to a Senate defense bill aimed at reforming the practice of redeploying national guardsmen on overseas tours after exceedingly short stays stateside. Well, the Democrats failed today for the second time to muster the 60 votes necessary to cut off debate and take a vote on the measure. I'm pleased to see that Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS) showed up this time, fitting a vote against "supporting the troops" into his busy campaign schedule (which includes photo-ops with the Schiavos). The Republican filibuster is a sign of the hardening of positions on the war in Iraq as we head into a presidential election year. Yesterday, I heard a Berkeley undergraduate, one of the many handing out fliers on Berkeley's Sproul Plaza, asking passers-by, "What do you think it will take to stop the war." I'm glad I wasn't asked, because my answer might have been misinterpreted: nothing will stop the war short of a presidential election. This isn't a Congress that is about to force the White House's hand in Iraq, not when it can't get right the treatment of reservists.