Q&A Friday #58: Democratic Thinking On Cutting Off The Funding For The War

Question: “The Democrat Presidential candidates this week have made a lot of noise demanding Bush be the one to withdraw the troops, and there have been some suggestions the Democrats may use their Congress and Senate majority to put pressure on him to do so (e.g. limit funding).

Do you think this is a strategic manoeuvre by the Democrats, given their prospects in 2008, to avoid having to be the party which withdraws the troops from Iraq, potentially resulting in even worse carnage, and possibly creating the perception among the world’s tyrants that the Democrat administration lacks the will to stand up to them?” — tdw77

Answer: Here’s the Democratic thinking behind the non-binding resolution against the surge:

#1) The liberal base is demanding that they cut the funding for the war.

#2) They don’t have the votes to cut off the funding right now.

Since that’s the case, politically, the smart thing to do would be for the Democrats to say, “We hope the surge succeeds, but if it doesn’t, well, it was our last best shot and we’d like Bush to give up the ghost if it doesn’t show results.” Bush has as much as said that anyway and given the political climate in the United States, that is what would happen because unfortunately, there will be enough Republican support in Congress to cut off funds to the troops by 2008, if there isn’t significant progress in Iraq.

However, the Democrats can’t go this route because their base has to be appeased. So, they feel compelled to push this non-binding resolution which makes them look like they’re trying to undercut the war for political reasons (which, by the way, is exactly what they’re doing). When the time comes, if they think they have the votes, they will attempt to surrender to Al-Qaeda by cutting off the funds for the troops in Iraq.

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