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Political Pressure mounts on both sides of the war
Posted by: McQ on Friday, January 26, 2007

Those who are against the war in Iraq and the President's new plan are staging a protest in Washington DC this weekend in which, the New York Times believes, tens of thousands will participate. The obvious intent of the timing is to influence the resolutions being considered in Congress especially those in the Senate. And as the NYT points out, few if any Senators are making plans to participate in the demonstrations.

That, however, isn't going to stop various factions within this effort from taking other action to pressure politicians as concerns the war:
So the groups that are organizing the demonstrations against the president’s strategy are also carrying out a sophisticated, well-financed lobbying campaign on Capitol Hill. Their behind-the-scenes efforts are intensifying, relying on tactics deployed in a cutthroat political race.

Americans Against Escalation in Iraq, a coalition of labor unions, MoveOn.org and other groups that have traditionally rallied against wars, has raised $1.5 million since it was formed two weeks ago. The group is singling out Republicans and Democrats who have spoken out against the war, but who have so far declined to pledge support for a resolution denouncing Mr. Bush’s plan to increase the number of troops.

Next week, the group intends to fly Iraq veterans to the home states of Republican senators who serve on the Foreign Relations Committee and voted Wednesday against the resolution condemning the administration plan, including Senators Norm Coleman of Minnesota and John E. Sununu of New Hampshire. Television advertisements are scheduled to be shown in some of the same states in an effort to apply pressure before the Senate vote on the resolution in early February.
However, pressure is also being applied on the other side of the ball. An effort begun by a host of conservative blogs, entails a website called "The NRSC Pledge" in which those signing the on-line petition pledge:
If the United States Senate passes a resolution, non-binding or otherwise, that criticizes the commitment of additional troops to Iraq that General Petraeus has asked for and that the president has pledged, and if the Senate does so after the testimony of General Petraeus on January 23 that such a resolution will be an encouragement to the enemy, I will not contribute to any Republican senator who voted for the resolution. Further, if any Republican senator who votes for such a resolution is a candidate for re-election in 2008, I will not contribute to the National Republican Senatorial Committee unless the Chairman of that Committee, Senator Ensign, commits in writing that none of the funds of the NRSC will go to support the re-election of any senator supporting the non-binding resolution.
The site has been up approximately 36 hours and has collected over 16,000 signature.

More fun to come next week when discussions on how to block the funding for the war begin in the Senate:
While Democrats have shown little reticence speaking against the president’s plan, there is little agreement on the next step. Next week, Senator Russell D. Feingold, Democrat of Wisconsin, is convening a hearing to discuss the ways in which Congress can begin blocking the financing for the war, an idea that remains deeply controversial inside the party.

“It’s a walk in the park right now to oppose the idea of this war. It’s also very easy to oppose the escalation,” Mr. Feingold said. “They are once again being too timid and too cautious.”
He's right, of course. Anyone can blow and go about opposing the war but are very nervous about the potential political costs of really doing anything concrete to defund it. Because, you see, doing something like that means taking ownership of the problem, and the one thing the Democrats have made obvious over the years is they don't mind being screamingly critical about the problem, but they aren't about to take ownership by offering to do what is necessary to back up their rhetoric.

That will be painfully obvious this weekend as they skip participating in these demonstrations.
 
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The site has been up approximately 36 hours and has collected over 16,000 signatures
How many are from Democrats, such as "Mickey Mouse" I wonder?

I mean, given tactics we’ve seen used by Democrats often enough, it seems a reasonable question to ask.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://
There is an active purging and verification process ongoing. Some names have already been removed because they were such as you mention or didn’t check out.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
He’s right, of course. Anyone can blow and go about opposing the war but are very nervous about the potential political costs of really doing anything concrete to defund it. Because, you see, doing something like that means taking ownership of the problem, and the one thing the Democrats have made obvious over the years is they don’t mind being screamingly critical about the problem, but they aren’t about to take ownership by offering to do what is necessary to back up their rhetoric
They don’t have the grapefruits to do it. Easier to whine like b*tches. But that’s an option no available to them for much longer.
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
There is an active purging and verification process ongoing. Some names have already been removed because they were such as you mention or didn’t check out.
Plus your name doesn’t show up until you confirm through email. Not gonna keep everyone out, but it does at least mean you have to put forth more effort to be a jackass.
 
Written By: ChrisB
URL: http://
Although I don’t normally contribute to Republicans, I proudly signed this pledge. Don’t think my Senator (Gordon Smith of Oregon) will not have an aide check out the signatories in Oregon for any big contributors. That is why the pledge includes giving your ZIP code. This is a good demonstration of petitioning your Congress as the Constitution guarantees we may. Of course, one must speak in the language they understand ($$).

Note to liberals: The numbers on this pledge may be much smaller than even the number of deomonstrators. Don’t be fooled. If the right names end up on this pledge, it will speak much louder than the demonstrations. Everyone, especially anyone who has attended a demonstration, knows that a good portion of the demonstrators are there for an outing, to get closer to a hot chick who is kinda political, to get an ego stroke from being part of something that you hope validates your credentials as a liberal, for later bragging rights (as in attending a Greatful Dead concert) or simply that it offers the possibility of more action than the mall.

I know one acqaintance who is a BIG contributor (signed pic of George and Laura, etc.) who ("Hell, Yes!") raced to sign. Wait until Senator Smith sees that name! Maybe he will see that going over to the other side on this issue is not the best way to hold his Republican seat in a Blue state.

It is time for the Democrats to stand up and be counted. Hold any political views you want just put your butt where your mouth is. Bush did.
 
Written By: notherbob2/robert fulton
URL: http://
How, exactly, did Bush put his "butt where his mouth is"? I’m afraid I don’t understand that one.

Anyway, it seems like it’s usually Bush’s foot that is in his mouth, not his butt.

Oh, and thanks for the note to liberals. And thanks for explaining why people go to demonstrations. Very enlightening.
 
Written By: Pug
URL: http://
Pug you didn’t realize that, Dude, take off the Black-Bloc mask and hang with the Free Love hippie Chicks...Remember Make Love, Not Trash Starbucks.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
"I’m afraid I don’t understand that one."
Exactly. You’re welcome.
 
Written By: notherbob2/robert fulton
URL: http://
How, exactly, did Bush put his "butt where his mouth is"? I’m afraid I don’t understand that one
LOL it does sound like a mixed metaphor.

But the fact is Bush has put his butt on the line for his policies. At least he’s man enough to see it through, and to try something different if necessary. If the GOP just wants to start crossing the aisle, they’re gonna find it won’t help them with their base, who will despise them, nor with the Dems (who consider the Republicans to be the enemy regardless)

Frankly, I’d see the GOP caucus in the senate whittled down small enough to meet in the broom closet if it meant we’d prune the RINOS out for good. At least when they lost the Senate it meant that buffoon Chafee got tossed out, especially before he could pull his Jeffords act and jump party lines just to get a plum assignment.

Losing Hagel would bring a similar smile to my face.
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
I’d see the GOP caucus in the senate whittled down small enough to meet in the broom closet

You weren’t by any chance the Commandant of the Marines were you, "I’d take a Corps that could fit in a Phone box, if they were good Marines."-If one believes that there CAN be such a thing as Good Marines.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Shark,
Easier to whine like b*tches.
I’m sure in your world the woman do a lot of that.
 
Written By: cindyb
URL: http://
I guess the grapefruits reference was okay though?
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
I’m sure in your world the woman do a lot of that.
Ooooooh, was I vaguely politically incorrect, or did you not have any real rebuttal?

Crawl back under your rock darlin’
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
Ooooooh, was I vaguely politically incorrect ...
Well that depends on what part of the anatomy you were locating the grapefruits, I suppose.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
I think this is right on.
“There should be a million people on the mall today. Instead, there might be 50,000. Today’s antiwar left talks big but . ... how unserious the left is about what they believe. ... If they really thought that the United States was on the verge of becoming a dictatorship are you seriously trying to tell me that any patriotic American wouldn’t do everything in their power to prevent it rather than mouth idiotic platitudes and self serving bromides? ...They are a small... minority of paranoid, self aggrandizing mountebanks who are courageous when it comes to calling people names but abject cowards when it comes to actually standing up for their beliefs ...”
 
Written By: notherbob2/robert fulton
URL: http://

 
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