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 Post subject: E. J. DIONNE: Keep GOP Feet to the Fire
PostPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2007 6:28 pm 
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Keep GOP Feet to the Fire


By E.J. Dionne

WASHINGTON—Two things are now abundantly clear about the future of U.S. policy toward Iraq. First, majorities in both houses of Congress have lost faith in President Bush’s approach to the war. Second, the president will do all he can to resist changing his strategy by trying to split his critics into ineffectual factions.

Bush’s choice is certainly bad for opponents of the war, but it’s also bad for American foreign policy.

The president is inviting a full-scale confrontation over his war-making powers in the expectation that the Democrats’ narrow majorities will deprive them of the votes they need to win such a fight. He is ready to split the country rather than give any ground to those who question whether it’s wise to risk ensnaring American troops in a Sunni-Shiite civil war.

The challenge to critics of the war is to make the debate about Bush, not themselves, and to make clear that the president has rebuffed all efforts to pursue a bipartisan path out of Iraq, beginning with his rejection of the core recommendations of the Iraq Study Group, headed by James A. Baker III and Lee Hamilton.

Changing our policy will require a substantial Republican rebellion. The 17 House Republicans who voted for the resolution opposing the president’s surge and the seven Senate Republicans who tried to get a vote for the House-passed measure are a start.


Read more at the link.

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