Earlier today you may have seen the post by Rep. Adam Smith, in which he explains his reasoning for opposing escalation in Iraq:
After the meeting I considered the President’s argument and reviewed the available information, including the Iraq Study Group report. In the end, even though I gave the President’s argument due consideration, I don’t find it persuasive. A troop surge is not the answer in Iraq.
But the big question is whether or not Rep. Smith is willing to use Congress’ constitutional power of the purse to limit the President’s ability to send additional troops to Iraq. [See the update below]
I don’t want to put the troops in a political fight between Congress and the President, and Congress should carefully consider the consequences of any attempts to block funds for a surge. We cannot put our forces in Iraq at greater risk. But a troop surge is not the answer in Iraq.
But Congressman, it is the President who has put the troops in this fight between himself and Congress! Let’s be clear: Democrats should fund the troops who are currently engaged, but not a single soldier more. Let’s draw a line in the sand. I think the working class folks of the 9th District would appreciate a congressman who sticks up (and always has, I might add) for the grunts who could be shipped out in a “surge.” Let’s make sure Rep. Adam Smith knows we’ve got his back on this!
Speaking of ‘speaking out,’ I’m seeing a trend starting to work its way around the blogosphere. Lefties are flying off the handle at perceived slights and sins of omission. Like this:
Our Senators have been remarkably quiet about Iraq for a long time. Until lately, Iraq wasn’t even on Patty Murray’s website. They’re doing better lately, but I was disappointed that they had no thoughts about the most important issue facing the country.
Did I miss something? I thought the Republicans were supposed to come up with right wing ideas, and Democrats were supposed to come up with left wing ideas. Instead, Murray and Cantwell are letting Bush and Cheney do all the thinking (no, I can’t read that with a straight face either). They are content to respond.
I’m getting worn out with folks runnin’ off half-cocked, with goofy ideas about exactly what senators and congressfolk ought to say and when they ought to say it. Senators Murray and Cantwell have some power to wield. Attention Democrats!! We’ve got power now!! This means it doesn’t matter what they say so much as what they do. As Kos says, just because Murray and Cantwell aren’t angrily denoucing Bush’s plan before he releases it doesn’t mean they’re not ready for a fight.
And in this fight, even the soldiers are with us.
Rep. Adam Smith was on KUOW today and said it was “appropriate to place limits” on the President regarding the increase of troop levels. He’s open to the idea, but is concerned that it might not be possible. He wants to make sure such a move doesn’t hurt the troops, which is his first concern (as it should be).