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November 18, 2005
What Could Be More American Than A Vote?

Man, I take a vacation and the place falls apart.

I'm watching C-SPAN right now, looking at a procedural vote to allow a motion on withdrawing American troops from Iraq, as demanded by Rep. John Murtha yesterday. With two minutes left, it looks like the Democrats will successfully block the motion, keeping Congress from taking a vote and making the Democrats go on record about troop disposition. Instead of stupid suggestions about amendments to bills constituting no-confidence motions, the Democrats have been given a chance to vote on a real no-confidence motion. Unsurprisingly, they are running away like cowards.

In fact, time just ran out on the vote and the procedural motion may have just passed, but only just. It looks like they're holding the vote open a few more minutes ...

8:44 CT - It's been 203-203 for the last couple of minutes -- which would, I believe, equate to a motion failure.

8:52 - The House finally voted to continue to the actual point, despite the vote from every single Democrat to run away from it. If nothing else does it, this shows the Democrats as political cowards as well as military incompetents. Why should we trust the leadership of the military to a group of people who run away from merely taking a vote?

9:00 - Rep Lantos wants "serious debate", and he wants an interminable filibuster. That's ridiculous. Murtha has been screaming for withdrawal for eighteen months, and we held a national election on the issue.

9:05 - Hyde and Weldon speak at length about the honor of Jack Murtha. That might make for great comity in the House, but let's get a grip, OK? Jack Murtha has a great record of service, without a doubt. That doesn't make his demands honorable.

9:07 - Murtha gets up to speak and tells a great, self-deprecating story about Jimmy Carter and Tip O'Neill.

9:12 - "I didn't say anything about the President." Excuse me, but he did make the chickenhawk argument yesterday about the Vice President. Calling him a "good friend" doesn't cut it today, nor does his sudden discovery of the merits of civilian control of military policy.

9:16 - Intelligence was "wrong". Possibly and maybe probably. I'd say that until we see a regime change in Syria we won't know for sure. But if it was "wrong", it was wrong, not a Bush lie, especiallt since it preceded his administration.

9:24 - The First Mate comments that both sides sound like blowhards. She's right. She says that whether one agrees with going into Iraq or not and whether or not WMD was found isn't the point any longer. We need to complete the mission now that we started it; we cannot afford to leave it unfinished. Al-Qaeda is in Iraq now, unarguably. Withdrawing in the face of their fire is retreat. We will not be safer by leaving them there.

9:25 - Rep Bill Young agrees with the FM. "Who do we negotiate with? Saddam Hussein? al-Zarqawi?"

10:12 - Sam Johnson wrapped up the debate well, and the best part came when he asked for an additional three minutes to complete his remarks. The Speaker asked for any objections, and several Democrats hooted out "Objection!" However, when the Speaker asked for whomever objected to stand up for his objection -- not one of them would stand up to Sam Johnson.

If that doesn't paint the Democrats and their lack of moral courage accurately, I'd like to see a better example.

10:16 - When the initial vote got called, not one "Aye" voice could be heard. Now I notice, after a demand for a recorded vote, that three people found their missing voice, two of them Democrats. It's going out on a lopsided No vote.

10:22 - CQ reader Jim O'Toole would like to know the identity of the Congressmen who objected to Johnson's request for an additional three minutes. Anyone have any idea? Also checking my e-mail, I see that John at Drumwaster is also liveblogging the debate.

10:31 - I would be remiss if I failed to mention the great coverage from Michael and Joe at The Moderate Voice on this issue. Think centrism is easy? Ha! But these two make it look like it is.

10:35 - 403-3, the idea of immediate withdrawal gets hooted down. In another Profile in Courage, six Democrats voted "present".

What a joke. The Republicans made the right move -- instead of debating the issue through the media, they took the Democratic demands and introduced it as a resolution for debate where rhetoric actually counts, and where both sides get equal time. In the Democratic world, that equates to something vaguely unfair. They tried to hide behind a procedural block, and when that didn't work, they screamed and hollered in support of the idea of withdrawal -- and then promptly voted against it when it counted.

No honor and no shame have the Democrats in these times, to their everlasting discredit. So much for no-confidence votes. None will stand for one even when handed the opportunity on a silver platter.

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at November 18, 2005 8:25 PM

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» GOP: Iraq Showdown from The Right Nation
I nostri soldati sono sotto attacco. Non possiamo permetterci di mandare segnali ambigui. Con queste parole, il congressman dell'Arizona, J.D. Hayworth, ha lanciato il guanto di sfida repubblicano agli avversari democratici, obbligandoli a prendere... [Read More]

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» Much Ado About Nothing from Weapons of Mass Destruction
The drama unfolding in the House tonight represents political theater at its best and worst. As usual, the media is gleefully going along for the ride. Liz Sidoti from the AP reports:House Republicans, seeing an opportunity, maneuvered for a quick [Read More]

Tracked on November 18, 2005 10:21 PM


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