Skip to comments.Republican opposition to Iraq plan grows (Warner, Collins, Coleman join w/Ben Nelson)
Posted on 01/22/2007 1:37:42 PM PST by NormsRevenge
WASHINGTON - Congressional Republicans pushed back Monday against President Bush's decision to deploy additional troops in Iraq, some voicing opposition while others called for the administration and Iraqi government to be held accountable.
In the Senate, three GOP lawmakers joined one Democrat in unveiling nonbinding legislation expressing disagreement with Bush's plan and urging him to "consider all options and alternatives" to the planned increase of 21,500 troops.
In the House, members of the leadership drafted a series of what they called "strategic benchmarks," and said the White House should submit monthly reports to Congress measuring progress toward meeting them.
The developments occurred on the eve of Bush's State of the Union address, and as Democrats pointed toward votes in the House and Senate in the next few weeks declaring that the troop increase was "not in the national interest of the United States."
Republicans have struggled to respond in the two weeks since Bush outlined his new strategy in a speech. Though aware that the war played a role in the GOP defeat in last fall's elections, most have been unwilling to abandon a president of their own party.
Both the Senate legislation and the action taken by the House Republican leaders were softer than the legislation that majority Democrats intend to place for a vote. But they also represented a more forceful response to the long and deadly war than the GOP offered while it held the majority in Congress.
Sen. John Warner (news, bio, voting record) of Virginia, former chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, joined GOP Sens. Susan Collins (news, bio, voting record) of Maine and Norm Coleman (news, bio, voting record) of Minnesota in producing the legislation expressing disagreement with Bush's plan.
"I personally, speaking for myself, have great concern about the American G.I. being thrust into that situation, the origins of which sometimes go back over a thousand years," Warner said.
Sen. Ben Nelson (news, bio, voting record) of Nebraska, the Senate's most conservative Democrat, joined the Republicans.
In the House, Rep. John Boehner (news, bio, voting record) of Ohio, the party's leader, said that he supports Bush's plan and that his backing is not conditional on the president agreeing to meet the standards that lawmakers laid out.
He said he had told the president "that the support is still strong among Republicans but there are a lot of our members who are skeptical that the plan will work" because of doubts that the Iraqi government will follow through on its commitments.
Boehner also released a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (news, bio, voting record), D-Calif., urging her to appoint a special committee of equal numbers of Republicans and Democrats to oversee the "implementation and progress of the president's new strategy for success in Iraq."
As the majority party, Democrats generally are entitled to more seats on House committees than Republicans, and it is unlikely Pelosi would agree to a different arrangement to monitor the war.
The House Republicans' suggested "strategic benchmarks" apply largely to the Iraqi government, which has pledged additional troops to quell sectarian fighting and to restrain Shiite militia.
Republicans want the government to be measured on its cooperation with U.S. forces, its ability to purge its security forces of insurgents and their sympathizers and also on its ability to assure that Shiite, Sunni, Kurd and other groups are treated equally.
Associated Press Writer Anne Flaherty contributed to this article
U.S. senators from both parties speak about their resolution which criticizes the Bush administration's escalation of troops in Iraq during a news conference in the Capitol in Washington January 22, 2007. From left are Senators John Warner (R-VA), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Norm Coleman (R-MN) and Susan Collins (R-ME). REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (UNITED STATES)
Coleman is the only name that surprises me in this article. Sad. He's tough on the border and a weenie on the war.
Coleman is up in '08 and just saw how the war weared on the Republican Senatorial candidate in his homestate in '06.
I said back in November the 110th congess doesnt support our troops, we are indicting soldiers for doing there job in a war zone and the 60-70pct of the Iraqis think its alright to kill US soldiers.What are we doing?
vote whores all
Gutless bastards that care about their own asses more than their country. Our 'leaders'.
There, title fixed.
The downside of voting GOP no matter what.
I'd say John McCain stands pretty tall right now in comparison to this bed-wetting wing of the GOP.
The Vichy Republicans
Warner's phone number (202) 224-2023, give him a call. It may not do any good, but it feels sooooo goooood.
With Republicans like these fools, who needs Democrats?
Norm isn't as conservative as we were led to believe when he was first elected...but, he represents Minnesota..which is about as lefty as any state in the nation.
I'm in Nebraska and it pains me to see Ben Nelson...a democrat elected twice to the Senate...the only way for Bush to overcome the tidal wave of discontent is to grab this bull by the horns and charge! President Bush, become the leader we all expect you to be! We know you can do it, make it happen! Quit with the mealey mouth "can't we all get along crap" and start LEADING! If you were to speak your mind forcefully and often, you could earn back the respect you need and rally the American people behind you to instill the fear of God into our enemies overseas...DO IT! Time is running out!
HOORAY for John Boehner....
I would like to post a positive post for a change re: our elected officials....so this is it.
I am glad that he not only backs Pres. Bush's plan..but even wants an equal group to oversee that it gets done.
LOL...of course her witchness of the House won't ever let it happen...but at least Boehner asked.
Someday, maybe I will forgive him for his slavish fawning over Pelosi the day that SHE took over as Speaker.
None of the wimpy Pubbies better call me for contributions! I'll tell em to grow a pair!I listened to Michael Reagan and he wants to pass a bill requiring all men libs to wear dresses and lipstick!! So we can recognize them right away! Ha!
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