Momentum

When three House Democrats stood up and said they would do everything in their power to keep the purse strings closed on the Iraq War, it looked like we might finally start getting what we need.

It has become clear that the Democratic leadership will do nothing to force anyone’s hand but their own when it comes to Iraq (anything, really), but the leadership isn’t the entire caucus, and rebellion is not impossible.

Adding to the growing momentum that very well may upend the stagnant Dem leadership, we come to find out that the caucus in the House to stop funding for the war is only growing:

Back in July, 70 House members signed a similar letter vowing to only fund withdrawal. At the time, The Politico deemed this a “big development,” adding: “This may be the beginning of the end for the Iraq War.”

Now more than 15 new members have added their names to the letter, bringing the total to 87, another significant step forward.

I obtained a copy of letter and the list of signers — which will officially be released and sent next week — from a House aide. Here’s the key quote from the letter, which is still being circulated among Dems for more signatures:

Dear Mr. President: Seventy House Members wrote in July to inform you that they will only support appropriating additional funds for U.S. military operations in Iraq during Fiscal Year 2008 and beyond for the protection and safe redeployment of our troops out of Iraq before you leave office.

Now you are requesting an additional $45 billion to sustain your escalation of U.S. military operations in Iraq through next April, on top of the $145 billion you requested for military operations during FY08 in Iraq and Afghanistan. Accordingly, even more of us are writing anew to underscore our opposition to appropriating any additional funds for U.S. military operations in Iraq other than a time-bound, safe redeployment as stipulated above.

That nearly 90 members are now saying they won’t vote for any funding save for redeployment is significant because it means that more than a third of the House Dem caucus is effectively saying they will no longer vote to fund the war, no matter what. Though this doesn’t necessarily mean the House Dem leadership won’t be able to get some sort of war funding passed, the leadership will have to reckon with this big block of No votes when figuring out its response to Bush’s request for war funding.

There are folks in DC trying to get it done.

One Response to “Momentum”

  1. Wrong- 89 House Dems and 1 Republican (I’ll let you figure out which one).

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