Harry Reid (Surrendacrat-Nevada) reacted to the Senate’s failure to pass legislation mandating a US troops withdrawal from Iraq by shelving the Defense Authorization Bill for the time being:
“I have temporarily laid aside the Defense Authorization bill and have entered a motion to reconsider. But let me be clear to my Republican colleagues — I emphasize the word “temporarily.” We will do everything in our power to change course in Iraq. We will do everything in our power to complete consideration of a Defense Authorization bill. We must do both. And just to remind my Republican colleagues — even if this bill had passed yesterday, its provisions would not take effect until October. So we will come back to this bill as soon as it is clear we can make real progress,” Reid said.
After the Congressional recess next month, the discussion can be taken up again in September, which is when General Petreaus’ report on the progress of the new strategies in Iraq is due.
Reid seems to be trying to deflect claims that the Democrats are turning their backs on the troops by saying it makes sense to wait until the report is made. This, of course, makes sense. But let’s remember a few things before rejecting criticism of Reid’s so-called leadership:
- Reid obviously didn’t think the September report mattered when he was trying to legislate a surrender. Last month, for the umpteenth time, he publicly said the effort was already a failure. Now that his own efforts have failed, he suddenly wants to hear what the report says before discussing funding for the military.
- Reid has said that if legislation to required withdrawal from Iraq fails, his next step will be to de-fund the war effort.
- Reid has said that he won’t believe any positive news that Petraeus reports.
Harry Reid says lots of things.
UPDATE: The AP news story about Reid’s plan to defund the war if he couldn’t get his withdrawal timetable was acting a bit funny earlier and is now gone. I’ve changed the link to an ABC news story from the same time.