Hagel and Gordon Smith Vote for Iraq Withdrawal Timeline

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Interesting. In a 50-48 vote, proponents of an Iraq withdrawal timeline prevailed against an attempt by Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS) to rip out that language in the Iraq supplemental spending bill being debated and voted on today.
Senators Chuck Hagel (R-NE) and Gordon Smith (R-OR) joined the Dems.
Senator Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) voted with the Republicans.
And shock of all shocks, Ben Nelson (D-NE) actually voted with the Dems on this one too — though Mark Pryor (D-AR) defected. I think Hagel’s aye vote forced Ben Nelson’s vote of support. Nelson knows how to triangulate.
I also forgot to salute Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) who has been shaky on this vote — and also stayed with her side of the aisle.
Senators Enzi (R-WY) and Johnson (D-SD) did not vote.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

25 comments on “Hagel and Gordon Smith Vote for Iraq Withdrawal Timeline

  1. Entertainment Articles says:

    I Think Democrats need some praise for this?

    Reply

  2. Pissed Off American says:

    What I find intriguing about the following item is that it so perfectly illustrates how inured the media, and the American public, has become to being bullshitted by these bastards in the Bush Administration, and by our government in general. Matter of factly, the article points out the complete absurdity of Bush’s comments.
    “Nothing earth shattering here folks, just your usual propaganda, lies, and bullshit issuing forth from the most powerful man on the planet.”
    Never mind that the deceptions are offered so transparently and brazenly by our President. Never mind that we are losing srevicemen everyday day as a result of these undeniable lies and charades. Never mind that close to three quarters of a million Iraqis have died as a result of this man’s dishonesty and corruption.
    Nope, no big deal. Just another day at the White House, with this corrupt piece of shit feeding us more crap.
    Ho hum.
    Blogging with Bush
    In trying to win support for his escalation in Iraq, President Bush was reduced to quoting two bloggers in Baghdad — who turned out to be brothers he once met at the White House — and their comments were more than three weeks old. Has it come to this?
    By Greg Mitchell
    (March 28, 2007) — This is how far he, and his argument for continuing the slaughter in Iraq, have fallen: President Bush today was reduced to quoting two anonymous bloggers from Baghdad.
    He cited them as evidence that his surge/escalation is working. One problem: their posts were written weeks ago, and re-published in the Wall Street Journal on March 7.
    So the bloggers weren’t even talking about current conditions in Baghdad. That left it to Rajiv Chandrasekaran, former Baghdad bureau chief of The Washington Post — and author of the heralded 2006 book “Imperial Life in the Emerald City” — who appeared on MSNBC’s “Countdown” tonight to debunk this idea of a newly-safe Baghdad. “I talk to Iraqis all the time,” he said.
    He revealed that there had been steady insurgent mortar shots falling in the supposedly safe “Green Zone” all week, at least two Americans had died there in recent days, and U.S. Embassy staff had been instructed, in a switch, to wear their protective armor and helmets outside at all times. He also disclosed that the embassy’s pool, scene of much partying in the recent past, has now been declared off-limits. All of this and more appears in a Post “Green Zone” article on Thursday.
    To back up his point that pulling out of Iraq would be a disaster, President Bush had said today, “They have bloggers in Baghdad, just like we’ve got here,” in a speech to the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.
    Then he quoted two of them: “Displaced families are returning home, marketplaces are seeing more activity, stores that were long shuttered are now reopening. We feel safer about moving in the city now. Our people want to see this effort succeed.”
    Only hours later did the White House reveal that the bloggers were brothers, Mohammed and Omar Fadhil, and these supposedly little-known average Joes had met Bush in the Oval Office in 2004. They are dentists and write an English-language blog from Baghdad called IraqTheModel.com, also available via Pajamas Media.
    The White House admitted that Bush had plundered the lines from an op-ed that the brothers wrote for The Wall Street Journal way back on March 5. The White House couldn’t even get the date right, as it turned out it actually appeared on March 7.
    continues at….
    http://tinyurl.com/22yc7c

    Reply

  3. Carroll says:

    Well, I can’t say much about votes because most bills are so full of crapola you never know what has been traded off for what to get votes on it.
    But I will say, and maybe this only seems so to me, that the public is seeing how there are fractions of dem and repubs that are alike and the splits in both parties.
    Whenever a dem departs from party line for good or bad and whenever a repub departs from party line for good or bad it highlights for voters who we need to keep or get rid off in both parties accordng to our personal positions.

    Reply

  4. Shawn says:

    That vote is a good start, but 50 is not enough. In six months when Iraq is in the same situation, they should have the vote again and it’ll be 60.

    Reply

  5. Pissed Off American says:

    “And remember as Ms Pelosi puts, “there’s a new Congress in town”.”
    Posted by Robert M
    Well, if we’re talkng Pelosi, “Congress” is spelled A-I-P-A-C.

    Reply

  6. Robert M. says:

    To all commenters:
    Ya gotta start somewhere
    or journey=single step,
    then ya gotta keep putting one foot in front of the other,
    after all its what the so-called Right did following Goldwater’s defeat in 1964,
    (and boy do I remember how wrong all the CW was about what would come after)
    so its a nonbinder that even if Dems had override votes, Bush/Cheney would just issue a presidential finding declaring it null & void, in effect supersizing the line item veto.
    But then…
    well, wouldn’t that obviously be “failure to ensure the proper execution of law”?
    And remember as Ms Pelosi puts, “there’s a new Congress in town”.
    (Somebody get me Woodrow Wilson on Congressional Government. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.)

    Reply

  7. rich says:

    Breaking News . . .
    Bush Announces Iraq Exit Strategy
    http://tinyurl.com/2pde59

    Reply

  8. gq says:

    Great. This now proves that Hagel voted against the Bolton nomination and has always voted according to his rhetoric.

    Reply

  9. Jack D says:

    We are never leaving Iraq. This vote is window-dressing by the Democrats. Iraq is the beginning. As the army attacks Iraq, the US gov’t erodes rights at home by suspending habeas corpus, stealing private lands, banning books like “America Deceived” from Amazon, rigging elections, conducting warrantless wiretaps and starting 2 illegal wars based on lies. Soon, another US false-flag operation will occur (sinking of an Aircraft Carrier) and the US will invade Iran.
    Final link (before Google Books bends to gov’t demands and censors the title):
    http://www.iuniverse.com/bookstore/book_detail.asp?&isbn=0-595-38523-0

    Reply

  10. Gadfly says:

    Only if Senator Hagel would advise Americans to ask themselves the following questions vis-a-vis Iraq, then the answers would point to the core of the problem: Greed & Power:–
    * Who benefits from the neo-con war in Iraq?
    [Answer:– The Bush Crime Family, Cheney, Rice, Rove & Gonzales have profitted in $$$. Halliburton, Bechtel, Carlyle Group, the Military Industrial Complex, Big OIL… NOT the American people who will have incurred a massive debt burden, which will spark inflation, totalling $1 TRILLION (approx. $450 BILLION to-date), unless the citizen is hyper-rich, and then he/she has been awarded massive tax-cuts for the wealthy– and, the poor who are largely the class which has been killed in Iraq– with over 3200 U.S. Soldiers slaughtered and tens of thousands maimed for life].
    * Who pays the costs in blood & treasure for the neo-con war in Iraq?
    [Answer:– Not the hyper-rich- not corporations- and not the neo-con Bushies. NONE of the neo-cons or their media-mouth-pieces ever served in war. But, the poor, dumb average & poor American slob is made to play-the-role of neo-serf-n-slave in the service of the Mad King George. Generally, it is the poor who are forced to sign-up “voluntarily” (to get a job)– because the kids of the rich go to college– and the neo-con arm-chair chicken-hawks don’t risk their sordid-and-squalid skins– and neither do their off-spring. Oh, and don’t forget the Iraqi people, the vast majority of whom want us out of their, because they admit now that life under Saddam Hussein was better than the nighmare of living in a war zone].
    Whenever a politico starts hocking his/her snake-oil, the basic questions to ask are first-and-foremost:– “Who Benefits?” and “Who Pays?”… And, if the American citizenry had asked these questions before the Iraq war, they would never have permitted us to be dragged into Bush’s Miserable Failure.
    But of course, Karl Rove and George W. Bush excel at inspiring fear, terror & loathing– that cause the American people to cower like lemmings in the corner at the irrational propaganda that is thrust our way.
    One of the most insightful assessments to-date is this must-read:–
    Zbigniew Brzezinski’s “Terrorized by ‘War on Terror’: How a Three-Word Mantra Has Undermined America” on http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/03/23/AR2007032301613_pf.html
    (cont.) …”… The culture of fear is like a genie that has been let out of its bottle. It acquires a life of its own — and can become demoralizing. America today is not the self-confident and determined nation that responded to Pearl Harbor; nor is it the America that heard from its leader, at another moment of crisis, the powerful words “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself”; nor is it the calm America that waged the Cold War with quiet persistence despite the knowledge that a real war could be initiated abruptly within minutes and prompt the death of 100 million Americans within just a few hours. We are now divided, uncertain and potentially very susceptible to panic in the event of another terrorist act in the United States itself.
    That is the result of five years of almost continuous national brainwashing on the subject of terror, quite unlike the more muted reactions of several other nations (Britain, Spain, Italy, Germany, Japan, to mention just a few) that also have suffered painful terrorist acts. In his latest justification for his war in Iraq, President Bush even claims absurdly that he has to continue waging it lest al-Qaeda cross the Atlantic to launch a war of terror here in the United States.
    Such fear-mongering, reinforced by security entrepreneurs, the mass media and the entertainment industry, generates its own momentum. The terror entrepreneurs, usually described as experts on terrorism, are necessarily engaged in competition to justify their existence. Hence their task is to convince the public that it faces new threats. That puts a premium on the presentation of credible scenarios of ever-more-horrifying acts of violence, sometimes even with blueprints for their implementation.
    That America has become insecure and more paranoid is hardly debatable. A recent study reported that in 2003, Congress identified 160 sites as potentially important national targets for would-be terrorists. With lobbyists weighing in, by the end of that year the list had grown to 1,849; by the end of 2004, to 28,360; by 2005, to 77,769. The national database of possible targets now has some 300,000 items in it, including the Sears Tower in Chicago and an Illinois Apple and Pork Festival…”… (cont.)
    …………
    And, for more outstanding insights, refer to:–
    Robert Fisk’s “The crushing fear that stalks America: The country is not at war. It is the US military that is engaged in an Iraqi conflict” on http://news.independent.co.uk/world/fisk/article2387832.ece
    (cont.)…”… But America is not at war. There are no electricity cuts on Valdosta’s warm green campus, with its Spanish style department blocks and its narrow, beautiful church. There is no food rationing. There are no air-raid shelters or bombs or “jihadists” stalking these God-fearing folk. It is the US military that is at war, engaged in an Iraqi conflict that is doing damage of a far more subtle kind to America’s social fabric…”… (cont.)
    Americans must overcome the fear by brain-washing committed by the neo-con Bushies over the last 5-6 years, and stand-up against the Tyranny of this insane Bush regime, before it is too late.

    Reply

  11. Brigitte N. says:

    Gadfly: Thanks for the above link. The number of Iraqi victims explains why the invaders and occupiers are not loved there as the Vice-President told us they would.

    Reply

  12. Gadfly says:

    What would Hagel say about this, if we were sufficiently lucky to have it published in the United States of America:–
    “Counting the cost
    The figures have now been vindicated by the government’s own advisers. It’s time we held our leaders to account for the 650,000 Iraqi dead…”…
    http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/richard_horton/2007/03/counting_the_cost.html

    The neo-con Bushies are responsible for the deaths of 650,000 Iraqis. Yeah, Bush will “save ’em” by killing ’em enmasse.
    When, oh when, Senator Hagel will you demand that Bush & Co. be impeached & put on trial for War Crimes & Crimes Against Humanity?
    The carnage in Iraq, that Bush is responsible for, is sickening!

    Reply

  13. carsick says:

    I know I’ve said it before but Hagel could make a great Sec. of State in a democratic administration.
    I’m a big fan of Wesley Clark’s but given our partisan times Hagel in an admin. might help restore some much needed credibility to the exec. office. Currently too many, rightfully, feel it is just a partisan machine when it is actually duty bound to represent all of Americans.
    Plus Clark could well serve any number of positions in a new admin. or even UN ambassador.
    I will also say again, I could not support Hagel for president.

    Reply

  14. NCProsecutor says:

    Dear Steve,
    I am totally confused. You go on for months about how Senator Hagel is a hero for saying one thing and doing another. Now, he finally puts his vote where his mouth has been and supports the Iraq withdrawal timetable, and you give us this puny post?!?
    I can only hope that you’re busy on something else right now and that we can look for a more detailed post in the near future. But I’m left wondering why the lack of effusive praise when Senator Hagel actually *does* something for a change.
    As for me, while I’m by no means ready to join the Chuck Hagel Fan Club (of which you appear to be a charter member), I applaud his vote in support of ending the madness in Iraq. And I suspect that you are correct about Senator Nelson’s vote.
    Anyway, I look forward to seeing more concrete action from Senator Hagel in the future — and more from you about what he’s doing, as opposed to what he’s saying.
    Sincerely,
    NCProsecutor

    Reply

  15. Pissed Off American says:

    Wow. Here we have a thread that lauds our politicians for supporting a bill that stands no chance of surviving its passage across the desk in the Oval Office. Cheney has gone so far as to state that…
    “A sudden withdrawal of our coalition would dissipate much of the effort that has gone into fighting the global war on terror, and result in chaos and mounting danger. And for the sake of our own security, we will not stand by and let it happen.”
    So here you have the Vice President declaring this Administration accountable to NO ONE. Not accountable to Congress. Not accountable to the American people.
    And we are to laud our politicians for assuming a posture that HAS ALREADY been rejected by the White House? And, I might add, a White House that has accumulated its unprecedented power and disdain for accountability because of the FAILURE of these politicians to employ the checks and balances they are sworn to employ?
    The cowardly and self serving politically motivated actions of people like Reid and Hagel has allowed these bastards to take this country to an unprecedented low.
    And now we are supposed to be excited by the wording in a bill that has no hopes of passing?
    Whoopee. Gee, hooray, hooray.
    And the lying, and the dying, continues.
    Why don’t we all just take a walk with John McCain in his own private Twilight Zone? I’ll see you at this Sunday’s picnic in Bagdad. Be sure to bring the kiddies.

    Reply

  16. liz says:

    It is refreshing to see elected representatives representing the people of their districts and not their personal interests on this vote. Historic isn’t it?

    Reply

  17. Pacific Coast Ron says:

    Good defense against the libertarian blindness, RJ Crews,
    and we still ain’t gonna vote for Gordon Smith in Oregon no matter how desperate he gets for centrist a**-coverage in his run for re-erection of his facade …

    Reply

  18. Richard W. Crews says:

    Well Robert, I WANT government in my life. I want a National single-payer health care, a well managed Social Security program, an open internet, environmental protection for me and the environment, and a planned retreat from our current (and assumed) energy usage. The government is really the only entity to do these things.
    Take mass transit; it has to be built before it will show promise. No one will plan their life, even show hints of same, until the transit exists. The “market” can’t do that.

    Reply

  19. Robert Morrow says:

    Here is a super article on why Ron Paul would make a great president:
    http://partialobserver.com/article.cfm?id=2140
    Ron Paul is not an internationalist like Hagel, but Ron Paul is definitely not a neocon, either. In fact, while folks like Hagel were voting for the war in Iraq [which I support], Ron Paul was one of the FEW principled people of either party to vote against it. Hillary Clinton, a total political opportunist, voted it for it because she was trying to burnish her voting record.
    So if anyone out there is looking for a libertarian, principled, consistent conservative to vote for, then RON PAUL is definitely someone to consider.
    I support Ron Paul for president. He will definitely get the government out of your life.

    Reply

  20. wesawthat says:

    being from louisiana we can say that todays vote by katrina mary landrieu in no way makes up for her past continuous bush crime machine butt smooching.

    Reply

  21. urbino says:

    Yes, I’ll give Harry Reid a huzzah! for holding his caucus together so well. (It’s striking that Pryor voted the other way, even though Nelson didn’t. Pryor is usually welded to Nelson’s hip on these things.)
    And, as one who has been calling for Sen. Hagel to DO something rather than just talk, here’s a huzzah! for him, too. As Gadfly says, Hagel has finally started voting consistent with his rhetoric. Let’s see if this start is also an end, or if this thing lasts.
    Also, note that if Hagel had left the Senate for the presidential campaign trail, this vote would have gone the other way. So I repeat my call for him — regardless of his ’08 decision — to keep his senate seat, where he can do some good NOW to hold off the Bush/Cheney agenda.

    Reply

  22. Matt Stoller says:

    Perhaps Democrats deserve some praise for this?

    Reply

  23. Gadfly says:

    P.S. Forgot to add, that these neo-con arm-chair chicken-hawks like Bush, Cheney, Rice, Rove, Gonzales & their Poodle-Blair, only serve their own private interests. They do not know sacrifice, danger or loyalty to those whom they are supposed to serve:– in short, they are traitors.
    Perhaps, Hagel has gleaned onto that truth! If so, he will ultimately demand that Bush & Co. be impeached.

    Reply

  24. Gadfly says:

    Well, Hagel is starting to vote consistently with his pronouncements– and, is to be applauded for showing that a Republican can state publically that there are limits to the irrational behaviour of a Republican president!
    There are limits which a true patriot should set– and, tragically, the vast majority of Republican lemmings have let Bush, Cheney, Rice, Rove & Gonzales get away with murder (and torture too).
    Moreover, isn’t it amusing that Bush-cum-Blair warn that what the U.K. soldiers captured by Iranians say cannot be trusted, because of the circumstances. Have these neo-con traitors no sense of “irony”?
    Do they not realize that they undermine their own case (known to be false, as well as illegal & immoral) that the torture of so-called “terrorists” and “jihadists” to get “information” is no more trust-worthy than that of U.K. soldiers captured by Iran?
    Probably not, for we’re talking about deaf-dumb-and-blind neo-con ideologues when it comes to Bush, Cheney, Rice, Rove, Gonzales & their Poodle-Blair– none of whom have ever served their nation.

    Reply

  25. beth says:

    Wow. Okay, Hagel does take risks. I’m glad this passed.
    But I’d really love to know the rationale for Hagel’s vote (one of only two) to keep in the unconstitutional authority for the executive branch to slip in US Attorneys without Senate confirmation. Any ideas, Steve?

    Reply

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