Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said ?For heaven's sake, look where we've come? when he was asked to comment about Congress?s decision to send a bill to the President to fund the war through the end of the fiscal year without any restrictions, mandatory benchmarks, or timeline for withdrawal. Look where they have come, indeed. It is as if the Democrats marched all the way down to the President?s goal line and fumbled the ball. That?s right, they turned over all the gains they have made to the President. And many say the Democrats probably only made it just barely past the fifty yard line, since even the bill the President vetoed provided funding for the war into 2009 and offered little means to enforce the benchmarks and withdrawal timeline.
Seems the Democrats don?t know when to hold ?em or when to fold ?em. They explain that they are sending this clean supplemental war funding bill to the President because they do not have the votes to overturn a veto of a bill that has any restrictions in it. So they have folded. But as Congressman Dennis Kucinich argues, Congress need not pass any bill to force the President to bring the troops home. There is enough money already in the pipeline to fund the withdrawal and the Democrats control the Congressional agenda. If they don?t want to vote on a war funding bill, they don?t have to. They could simply ?hold ?em.?
Meanwhile, Kucinich is also opposing the inclusion of one benchmark requiring the Iraqi?s to pass a law that would turn over much of the control of and profits from its oil industry to private, multi-national companies. This little talked about provision would turn Iraq into a cash cow, but not for the Iraqis. Some might consider this requirement akin to demanding that Iraq consent to rape. Yet, over here in the US, supporters of this benchmark call it a pre-requisite for peace. Can you say ?blood for oil??