Out of Iraq Caucus: Troops home by 2008

Progressive Democratic Congressmembers Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Lynn Woolsey (D-CA) have introduced a new amendment to the legislation recently offered by the [relatively conservative, establishment friendley] Democratic party “leadership,” specifying that our military should completely withdraw from Iraq before the end of 2007. Rawstory is reporting:

[t]he Lee proposal varied from the budget legislation debuted by the House Democratic Leadership today. A release sent by the office of House Appropriations Chairman Rep. David Obey (D-WI) today outlined a timeline for the exit of US troops from Iraq. If President Bush is unable to certify that the Iraqi government is making progress toward political and military benchmark by July 1, US troops must be withdrawn by Dec. 2007, as the Progressive seek.

The language at the heart of the proposed amendment is section (a)(2), which specifically provides for:

the safe and complete withdrawal from Iraq of all members of the Armed Forces and contractor personnel described in paragraph (1) pursuant to a plan that provides for completion of the withdrawal not later than December 31, 2007.

…and CONTRACTOR PERSONNEL. (heh) I have a feeling this will not go over well with the Blackwater contingent.

I also appreciate the clever framing employed in this legislation, which states that this amendment seeks to “fully fund” the withdrawal…very clever.

Rep. Woolsey, co-chair of the Progressive and Out of Iraq Caucuses with Rep. Lee, added some fiery truth at the press conference:

It’s time Congress finally caught up to the people we represent, who recognized long ago that the Bush Iraq policy was a train wreck,” she said. “The White House has shown nothing but contempt for public sentiment when it comes to Iraq; if we won’t stand up for Americans on this issue, who will?

I would prefer the administration end the illegal occupations of both Afghanistan and Iraq immediately. However, I appreciate the simplicity of this amendment. Keep in coming Barbara and Lynn, I’m watching you and your colleagues.


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