Monday, February 19, 2007

Senate on Iraq: Does a Shadow Cast a Shadow?

Harry Reid claims a 'symbolic victory' in a vote on a measure without substance. So this Senate is scoring its achievements on some sort of 'gossamer scale'. Perhaps we can expect an artist's conception of a balanced budget next. Or maybe Reid will compose a song about entitlement reform. Or maybe there'll be a free-verse poetry session on the war on terror. Just think of the possibilities:

Reid Claims Symbolic Victory Even as GOP Blocks Iraq Resolution
Saturday, Feb. 17; 3:28 pm
By John Stanton,
Roll Call Staff

Despite falling four votes short of breaking a GOP filibuster, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) claimed a symbolic victory in the fight over the Iraq War today as Democrats mustered a bipartisan majority of 56 lawmakers to support taking up a resolution opposing President Bush’s plan to increase U.S. troop levels in the war-torn country.

Following the failed cloture vote, Reid withdrew the resolution, essentially ending the chances that it will again come before the Senate this year. In a brief statement following the vote, Reid said that “a majority of the United States Senate just voted on Iraq and a majority of the United States Senate is against the escalation in Iraq.”

Republicans, however, argued that the vote was a victory for their efforts both to back Bush’s plan and to protect the procedural rights of the minority. While Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) argued that “Senate Republicans have indicated once again that they are going to insist on a debate on Iraq that includes funding for the troops,” Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) characterized the vote as protecting “what the United States Senate has stood for for 200 years ... [that] if an idea has 60 votes, it gets out of the Senate...”

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