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Liveblog: Vote to End the War on Afghanistan Today
Call your House representative and tell him or her to vote YES on H. Con. Res. 248! Congressional Switchboard: 202-224-3121.
Help live blog with your comments below.
8:28 a.m. Congressman Kucinich still does not know what time the debate and vote will be. I just saw Rep Raul Grijalva plodding down the sidewalk looking rather glum. No doubt he'll vote for ending the war and plan to vote for funding it next month if he's needed. Obviously his soul, if he has one left, is not needed in this town.
8:31 a.m. Reminder of the basics: a vote to end the war in Afghanistan is good (although easy because it won't pass and would never pass the senate or president anyway). So if there is a vote on the resolution, YES votes are good, but if there is a vote to table the resolution or refer it to committee, that will be a vote to kill it, and a NO vote on such a motion is good. Conversely, a NO vote on ending the war or a YES vote on killing the resolution is an act of murder. Those who vote the wrong way must be voted out. Those who vote the right way must be compelled to vote NO on funding the wars, when the $33 B supplemental comes up in April or May, or be voted out.
8:35 a.m. Rep Jim McGovern just wandered up Pennsylvania Avenue not looking as sad as Grijalva but with only an ounce or so of additional commitment in his heart. The Democratic senators are holding a shindig for progressive media folks that I was going to attend from around noon to 5 (wars are not on the agenda of topics in any way except via all the things that are on the agenda that can't be paid for with all the money going to wars). Now I'm going to attend whichever portions of it don't overlap with the war debate and vote.
8:45 More basics. Remember, this is a vote to end the war in Afghanistan, but there is also a war in Iraq that shows no sign of ending.
8:58 Rep. David Wu sitting with me and telling me about his new internet freedom caucus and debating whether to let more Dems join before getting more Rpubs to join. Same routine activist coalitions go through, I tell him. I don't point out that the Dems have a big majority and that Republicans in the same position would never go through the same fearful contortions. I ask him if he'll vote against a war today and he says "Nope. I'm with the president on this one." And I say "I'm with peace and justice and if the president comes to there I'll be with him too." Wu says "Good for you. Good for you." He changes the subject: "We're going to get healthcare done. You heard it here first." I ask about Kucinich's amendment to let states do better, which Wu voted for in July. "They took it out," I say. "They took my healthcare I.T. stuff out too," he says, and shakes his head. "It's irritating," he says. "It's deadly," I say. He talks about history and the 50-year view. He's reading the Politico the whole time. He leaves me with an article on Stupak and abortions, and says "That's one important point. The other is we;ve been working on this since 1912 - It's time to get it done." Big grin. He leaves, in his gym clothes, presumably not headed for the locker room Rahm frequents. Needless to say, I don't believe he's getting anything done.
9:23 BTW, top story in the Politico and The Hill, both of which Wu left as litter on the table here: Eric Massa "tickling" staff and interns. Is that what they call it? Plus, from CBS, an actual good reason to back the healthcare bill, although not good enough: Rush Limbaugh promises to leave country if it passes.*
*Unless it covers Viagra.
9:47 Grayson pulls a Woolsey: Rep Alan Grayson will vote for the insurance corporation bailout, ending all discussion of healthcare, AND has just introduced the kind of bill that should be passed instead: Medicare for All. [Update: Howard Dean and DFA raising money today on wanting the public option but not opposing the bill that lacks the public option.]
9:55 Congress is scheduled to start up at 10 a.m., but I'm not scheduled to start paying attention until they get to the war debate.
10:01 David Corn just offered to bet some rightwinger $1000 that the inspectors were in Iraq prior to invasion, which doesn't beat Jonathan Schwartz who bet another one $1000 before the invasion that no weapons would be found, and collected.
11:30 a.m. Here is what we know so far. The debate on the “rule” governing the debate on the resolution on the war in Afghanistan should begin at about 12:30 pm. This is not the actual debate on the resolution. The debate on the resolution should follow the debate on the “rule” but at this point we don’t know how long the debate on the “rule” will last – the maximum time allowed for debate on the “rule” is 1 hour. The time could be shorter. Vote on actual resolution could be in evening, not necessarily following the debate, which is 3 hours with 90 mins for each of the two branches of govt, the Dems and the Repubs. The rule debate is run by McGovern. KEEP CALLING CONGRESS UNTIL THE VOTE!!
12:15 I'm at the Senate Democrats "progressive" media summit, where they have faster internet than I do and I can watch C-Span with headphones. It hasn't started yet.
12:25 p.m. Call these offices: (or find your rep)
Nadler, Jerrold NY-8 202-225-5635
McDermott, Jim WA-7 202-225-3106
Watson, Diane E. CA-33 202-225-7084
Waters, Maxine CA-35 202-225-2201
Lewis, John GA-5 202-225-3801
McGovern, James P. MA-3 202-225-6101
Edwards, Donna F. MD-4 202-225-8699
Velazquez, Nydia M. NY-12 202-225-2361
Hinchey, Maurice D. NY-22 202-225-6335
Cohen, Steve TN-9 202-225-3265
Welch, Peter VT 202-225-4115
Pastor, Ed AZ-4 202-225-4065
Honda, Michael M. CA-15 202-225-2631
Richardson, Laura CA-37 202-225-7924
Hirono, Mazie K. HI-2 202-225-4906
Costello, Jerry F. IL-12 202-225-5661
Hare, Phil IL-17 202-225-5905
Quigley, Mike IL-5 202-225-4061
Schakowsky, Janice D. IL-9 202-225-2111
Olver, John W. MA-1 202-225-5335
Payne, Donald M. NJ-10 202-225-3436
Lujan, Ben Ray NM-3 202-225-6190
DeFazio, Peter A. OR-4 202-225-6416
Duncan, John J. TN-2 202-225-5435
Jackson-Lee, Sheila TX-18 202-225-3816
Kagen, Steve WI-8 202-225-5665
Waxman, Henry A. CA-30 202-225-3976
Harman, Jane CA-36 202-225-8220
Rohrabacher, Dana CA-46 202-225-2415
Brown, Corrine FL-3 202-225-0123
Braley, Bruce L. IA-1 202-225-2911
Loebsack, David IA-2 202-225-6576
Jackson, Jesse L. IL-2 202-225-0773
Gutierrez, Luis V. IL-4 202-225-8203
Carson, Andre IN-7 202-225-4011
Whitfield, Ed KY-1 202-225-3115
Frank, Barney MA-4 202-225-5931
Tierney, John F. MA-6 202-225-8020
Kilpatrick, Carolyn C. MI-13 202-225-2261
Clay, Wm. Lacy MO-1 202-225-2406
Cleaver, Emanuel MO-5 202-225-4535
Etheridge, Bob NC-2 202-225-4531
Holt, Rush D. NJ-12 202-225-5801
Bishop, Timothy H. NY-10 202-225-5936
Maloney, Carolyn NY-14 202-225-7944
Slaughter, Louise McIntosh NY-28 202-225-3615
Fudge, Marcia L. OH-11 202-225-7032
Kaptur, Marcy OH-9 202-225-4146
Blumenauer, Earl OR-3 202-225-4811
Schrader, Kurt OR-5 202-225-5711
Brady, Robert PA-1 202-225-4731
Fattah, Chaka PA-2 202-225-4001
Christensen, Donna M. VI 202-225-1790
Moore, Gwen WI-4 202-225-4572
Miller, George CA-7 202-225-3032
Thompson, Mike CA-1 202-225-3311
Speier, Jackie CA-12 202-225-3531
Eshoo, Anna CA-14 202-225-8104
Capps, Lois CA-23 202-225-3601
Napolitano, Grace F. CA-38 202-225-5256
Sánchez, Linda CA-39 202-225-6676
Matsui, Doris O. CA-5 202-225-7163
DeLauro, Rosa CT-3 202-225-3661
Himes, James A. CT-4 202-225-5541
Norton, Eleanor Holmes DC 202-225-8050
Hastings, Alcee L. FL-23 202-225-1313
Johnson, Hank GA-4 202-225-1605
Rush, Bobby L. IL-1 202-225-4372
Yarmuth, John A. KY-3 202-225-5401
Neal, Richard MA 202-225-5601
Delahunt, William D. MA-10 202-225-3111
Tsongas, Niki MA-5 202-225-3411
Markey, Ed MA-7 202-225-2836
Bartlett, Roscoe G. MD-6 202-225-2721
Peters, Gary C. MI-9 202-225-5802
Walz, Timothy J. MN-1 202-225-2472
Oberstar, James L. MN-8 202-225-6211
Watt, Mel NC-12 202-225-1510
Shea-Porter, Carol NH-1 202-225-5456
Hodes, Paul W. NH-2 202-225-5206
Pallone, Frank NJ-6 202-225-4671
Rothman, Steven R. NJ-9 202-225-5061
Berkley, Shelley NV-1 202-225-5965
Hall, John NY-19 202-225-5441
Maffei, Daniel NY-25 202-225-3701
Sutton, Betty OH-13 202-225-3401
Kilroy, Mary Jo OH-15 202-225-2015
Ryan, Tim OH-17
Doggett, Lloyd TX-25 202-225-4865
Chaffetz, Jason UT-3 202-225-7751
Perriello, Thomas S.P. VA-5 202-225-4711
Moran, Jim VA-8 202-225-4376
Berry, Marion AR-1 202-225-4076
Flake, Jeff AZ-6 202-225-2635
Lofgren, Zoe CA-16 202-225-3072
Becerra, Xavier CA-31 202-225-6235
Chu, Judy CA-32 202-225-5464
Roybal-Allard, Lucille CA-34 202-225-1766
Campbell, John CA-48 202-225-5611
DeGette, Diana CO-1 202-225-4431
Perlmutter, Ed CO-7 202-225-2645
Larson, John CT-1 202-225-2265
Courtney, Joe CT-2 202-225-2076
Murphy, Christopher S. CT-5 202-225-4476
Castor, Kathy FL-11 202-225-3376
Wasserman Schultz, Debbie FL-20 202-225-7931
Price, Tom GA-6 202-225-4501
Boswell, Leonard IA-3 202-225-3806
Shimkus, John IL-19 202-225-5271
Visclosky, Peter IN-1 202-225-2461
Hill, Baron IN-9 202-225-5315
Lynch, Stephen MA-9 202-225-8273
Sarbanes, John MD-3 202-225-4016
Cummings, Elijah E. MD-7 202-225-4741
Ehlers, Vernon J. MI-3 202-225-3831
McCollum, Betty MN-4 202-225-6631
Thompson, Bennie G. MS-2 202-225-5876
Taylor, Gene MS-4 202-225-5772
Price, David E. NC-4 202-225-1784
Coble, Howard NC-6 202-225-3065
Pascrell, Bill NJ-8 202-225-5751
Heinrich, Martin NM-1 202-225-6316
Bishop, Timothy H. NY-1 202-225-3826
McMahon, Michael E. NY-13 202-225-3371
Rangel, Charles B. NY-15 202-225-4365
Israel, Steve NY-2 202-225-3335
Tonko, Paul NY-21 202-225-5076
Driehaus, Steve OH-1 202-225-2216
Wilson, Charles OH-6 202-225-5705
Wu, David OR-1 202-225-0855
Kanjorski, Ron PA-11 202-225-6511
Dahlkemper, Kathy PA-3 202-225-5406
Sestak, Joe PA-7 202-225-2011
Gordon, Bart TN-6 202-225-4231
Gohmert, Louie TX-1 202-225-3035
Hinojosa, Ruben TX-15 202-225-2531
Gonzalez, Charlie TX-20 202-225-3236
Johnson, Eddie Bernice TX-30 202-225-8885
Bishop, Rob UT-1 202-225-0453
Scott, Bobby VA-3
Inslee, Jay WA-1 202-225-6311
Obey, David WI-7 202-225-3365
Mollohan, Alan WV-1 202-225-4172
Lummis, Cynthia M. WY 202-225-2311
12:38 No House debate yet, but over here in Senate Progressives wonderland, Senator Debbie Stabenow is telling us that the filibuster is warfare and that senators "suit up" for war every day, which is sick considering their continued funding of REAL war, and their refusal to end the filibuster rule or even oppose it -- Stabenow says it should be used, but used less. She also says they can't make Repubs actually stand up and talk for their filibusters without shutting the Senate down for a week. She also lies that it takes 2/3 to change the rules.
12:46 Stebenow says healthcare is a right, not a priviliege and she's focused on both (both!) making it affordable and (and!) bringing down costs. (Um, if it's a right, why do you have to buy it?)
12:49 Rep. McGovern (D, MA) is on the floor now talking about Afghanistan (and Senator Reid on the stage here at the summit).
12:51 Rep Lincoln Diaz-Balart (R, FL) giving the pro-war line (and Senator Reid saying that in the next Congress they'll have to "make some changes" in the filibuster rule). D-B also very pro-Obama and pro-heroic assault on the fictional city of Marjah. D-B claims leaving Afghanistan would actually endanger the United States - here in, you know, the United States! And in Afghanistan women would lose the rights they have gained (they have)? "It is not the time to turn our backs on the Afghan people." Turn our backs? Begin diplomacy and aid and support. Stop KILLING them. How can that count as turning our backs?
12:59 McGovern back up. And Rep Chellie Pingree (D. Maine). Good anti-war talk including on financial cost. She CANNOT vote for the funding after this! Jared Pollis too. (Rob Kall asking Reid about healthcare and is it a first step. Reid says "If this is a first step it's a hell of a first step." Hmm. And Bob Fertik asking about Schumer-Van Hollen bill on Citizens United. Reid makes no promises about getting anything passed this year.) Lloyd Doggett also speaking in House. (Maybe others I missed.)
1:09 I asked Reid about wars and whether the Senate will act if U.S. does not leave Iraq by 2011. He praised Dennis Kucinich and then said there would be legislative action in the Senate if that happens. Good. We'll hold him or his replacement to that. Reid also cited Johns Hopkins and the figure of over 1 million Iraqi deaths.
1:10 Kucinich on the floor in the House, speaking as well as always. Powerful.
1:13 Rep Earl Blumenauer (D, Oregon) speaking against the wars in House.
1:14 Mark Levine asked Reid why they don't shut down the Senate in a fight with Repubs. Stabenow now giving a longer answer than Reid gave, saying Dems believe in governing, while Repubs do not. Not much of an answer.
1:15 (Senator Bob Menendez up now in senate forum.) Blumenauer actually opposing the resolution, but praising the House for holding a debate, and talking however about the House power to reject funding bills -- even though he probably won't. (Menendez telling old joke about Republicans. Almost nobody bothers to laugh.)
1:17 Diaz-Balart going on again about the Taliban without distinguishing it from Al Qaeda or the Afghan govt or anything else.
1:19 McGovern concluding in support of the resolution, but -- like Blumenauer -- mostly praising the holding of the debate they're holding now and about to hold for 3 more hours (if, I guess, they can find people to talk that long). McGovern asks who will stand in this chamber and state how many American lives should be lost.
1:21 Vote now and for next 15 mins on the rule on whether to have the debate and vote. Vote results will be posted here.
1:23 C-Span is giving microphone to Sabrina Eaton, longtime Cleveland Plain Dealer attack dog assigned to smear Kucinich.
1:31 (Senator Byron Dorgan reciting poetry. Should keep his day job. Or rather ... Well, you know what I mean. Senators Markley and Schumer here too to talk jobs. Dorgan says senate is a bathtub and they need to work on the faucet and the drain. Lovely analogy even without Grover Norquist's hope of drowning the govt in a bathtub. The drain, it turns out, mean jobs outsourcing - that has to be stopped, says Dorgan, who does not want to repeal NAFTA or any other corporate agreements. Dorgan's solution would be fair tariffs with China.)
1:37 (Senator Chuck Schumer (D, NY) says next week 3 Dems and 3 Repubs (how sweet!) will introduce legislation re China's manipulation of its currency.)
1:40 Vote ticking along in the House, with 2 Repubs (no doubt, resolution cosponsors Walter Jones and Ron Paul) voting Yes, but 23 Democrats thus far voting No. Typical.
(1:45 Schumer says his Rules and Admin Cmtee will hold hearings on ending the filibuster rule.)
1:54 This has been a pretty longish 15 minute vote in House. Apparently they're voting on some other bills now. No results yet posted by House clerk.
(1:54 Chris Hayes asks about penalties for banks that get public money and don't lend it out. Senator Markley agrees but offers no specifics.)
(1:57 Question about inadequate size of job bill. Schumer suggests they'll do better. We'll see.)
(2:00 pm Schumer says filibuster hearings will look at history of filibuster and question of whether changing filibuster rule has to be done at start of a session. Says majority of Senate Dems want to undo or modify filibuster. Also says will look at proposals from Harkin and Udall. Harkin's at least is a bill, which can -- of course -- be filibustered. But changing the rule by majority vote to what Harkin wants is a serious idea -- although not as good or defensible as eliminating the filibuster rule entirely and eliminating minority rule. Schumer talks about messaging but misses this: You can't argue against minority rule if your plan is to switch to a different type of minority rule.)
(2:06 pm Ed Shultz asks about healthcare. Schumer says he's been in House and Senate and only one of them sucks. Well get rid of it! We don't need a Senate! Schumer says they need 50 senators and 218 [he means 216] house members have to agree on a bill for reconciliation -- possibly with a senate bill passed first. Dorgan says House always has difficulty with the Senate because the rules are so different. [No, I'm with Schumer: the Senate sucks.])
2:11 Kucinich begins the debate. He cites opposition in Netherlands, Britain, Germany, financial cost here in the US, and the couterproductive impact of building the Taliban through occupation.
2:16 Democrat Rep Howard Berman leads opposition to the resolution, claims that war power belongs to the president because given to a previous president in the Authorization to Use Force. Then he says the point of being in Afghanistan is to "expand the rule of law" of all things, as if the US Constitution is something other than a law and can therefore be brushed aside, and the War Powers Act along with it. Berman claims Obama has provided a timeline. Claims great success in the "city" of Marjah, which has been "retaken". Berman claims the war in Afghanistan is justified as revenge against "those who attacked us."
Here is the roll call on the vote on the rule. Five Republicans voted yes and 6 did not vote, while 28 Dems voted No and 4 did not vote. The Repubs voting Yes were Campbell, Duncan, Jones, Paul, and Johnson (IL).
2:22 Ileana Ros-Lehtinen is leading Republican propaganda in agreement with Berman, much to his pride no doubt. For IRL this is about saving face and not "retreating" before the eyes of the world. She puts Al-Qaeda-And-The-Taliban together into one word.
2:26 True Majority just came out in favor of the resolution. Trouble making up your minds, folks?
2:29 Paul Martin thinks these non-sponsors will be Yes votes: Rep. Polis (CO), Rep. Ellison (MN), Edwards (MD), McGovern (MA), Schakowsky (IL) and Kagen (WI).
Current 19 Cosponsors:
Rep Baldwin, Tammy [WI-2] - 3/4/2010
Rep Capuano, Michael E. [MA-8] - 3/4/2010
Rep Clarke, Yvette D. [NY-11] - 3/4/2010
Rep Conyers, John, Jr. [MI-14] - 3/4/2010
Rep Davis, Danny K. [IL-7] - 3/4/2010
Rep Farr [CA]
Rep Filner, Bob [CA-51] - 3/4/2010
Rep Grayson, Alan [FL-8] - 3/4/2010
Rep Grijalva, Raul M. [AZ-7] - 3/4/2010
Rep Johnson, Timothy V. [IL-15] - 3/4/2010
Rep Jones, Walter B., Jr. [NC-3] - 3/4/2010
Rep Lee, Barbara [CA-9] - 3/4/2010
Rep Massa, Eric J. J. [NY-29] - 3/4/2010
Rep Michaud, Michael H. [ME-2] - 3/4/2010
Rep Paul, Ron [TX-14] - 3/4/2010
Rep Pingree, Chellie [ME-1] - 3/4/2010
Rep Serrano, Jose E. [NY-16] - 3/4/2010
Rep Stark [CA]
Rep Woolsey, Lynn C. [CA-6] - 3/4/2010
That puts us at 26 Yes votes that we know about. Not terribly far from the 38 we need to block funding if the Republicans all vote No for some unrelated reason.
2:30 Nadler speaking strongly in support of the resolution. He will HAVE TO vote no on the funding!
2:40 I missed some due to intermission mingling in senate summit, and got back in time to hear Repub Rep Ted Poe say we have to keep war going because otherwise we'd be admitting that the last American killed there died for no good reason (even though, of course, he did). Poe ALSO says withdrawing the troops (and mercenaries) would be "pulling the rug out from under Our Troops" (How? They'd be home with their families and friends.) Victory is close!! Remember the Alamo! (not kidding).
2:46 Bob Filner says Yes, war is hard, but PEACE IS HARDER. Filner nails it. Filner stresses damage to troops, and the Pentagon's hiding of the facts on that. Victory is close? Show me what that victory is! Suicide rates for vets are now higher than for Vietnam.
(Senator Sanders talking healthcare in forum while Filner speaking in House. Sanders echoes something Wu told me today: the President wasn't pusing hcr hard until last week. Sanders said they had over 50 votes for a strong "public option" just not 60.)
2:51 Ike Skelton asks Have we forgotten 9-11? Have we forgotten who did it? (Answering his own question in the affirmative by asking it).
2:58 Republican Rep Buck McKeon cheers for wars, lies, and Obama!
3:01 McKeon: We're there [occupying their country] to bring them freedom and retake fictional cities like Marjah! Rah! Cut and run. Cut and run. Boo!
3:02 Kucinich on timeliness of the debate: You guys didn't debate it for 8 years!
3:03 Ron Paul speaking in support of the resolution and congressional war powers.
3:04 Ron Paul: the unconstitutional 90-day permission for war in war powers act has been extended to 10 years!
Paul: The Taliban did not launch 9-11, neither did the govt of Afghanistan. Of those 20 individuals, 2 of them might have passed through Afghanistan. Bin Laden cheered for 9-11 and also for the invasion and war. On and on -- great job by Paul.
(3:06 Ed Schultz complaining to the senators that they will not come on progressive talk shows. Stabenow says progressive media doesn't support the Dem senators enough. John Aravosis jumps up and calls BS, says he's tired of doing so. [ I say it's not our job.] Mike Stark jumps up and says the progressives in the Senate [such as they are] don't go after the other senators. Then when Sherrod Brown leaves everyone claps for him -- as for all the senators today. Why should media applaud them?)
3:15 Dem Rep Ackerman giving lengthy excuse for war.
(3:18 Sanders wants a progressive alternative to the right-wing echo chamber. But that would not fall in lockstep for non-progressive Democratic senators!)
3:28 Sheila Jackson Lee speaking now (for the resolution no doubt -- where will she be on the funding?) (I've been distracted by media discussion here in Senate forum. I asked Stabenow about her notion of not coming on shows if they'll be criticized from a progressive point of view. She denies that position. I asked Sanders about state single-payer. He claimed his solution is better than Kucinich's and that he's trying to get the date for it moved back from 2017 to 2014. I hope so!)
3:33 Dem Rep Jane Harman speaking up for war. We MUST elect Marcy Winograd!
3:34 Kucinich explaining the War Powers Act to Congress -- wonder if any of them have read it?
3:36 Lynn Woolsey speaking against the war right after Harman's speech for war, Harman whom Woolsey supports and raises funds for. Woolsey may vote against the funding of the wars next month, but will she WHIP anyone else to?
3:39 (Bingaman, Boxer, Cardin, Shaheen speaking here on clean energy -- and hopefully not clean coal.)
3:40 Repub Rep Ginny Brown-Waite doing the Remember 911 schtick.
3:42 Rep Tammy Baldwin speaking for resolution. She's going to have to vote against the funding!!
3:46 Dem Rep John Tanner wants to keep war going for our allies in the war. Now THAT's friendship.
3:39 Grayson declares victory in Afghanistan as of expulsion of Taliban and Al Qaeda in 2001. "Now we can go home." It's not a war. It's a foreign occupation. What have we heard from the war supporters today that they couldn't have said years ago and will want to say next year and the year after that?
3:53 Oh jeez: Hunter is up. Will tune out now. Wait: he now claims to speak IN CONGRESS "as a Marine." Claims Grayson denounced all veterans by complaining about the injuries suffered by many vets.
(Senators asked why they have not -- except for Cardin -- signed onto Appalachian Restoration Act to stop mountaintop removal. So, Cardin answers and defends his colleagues not doing anything. Boxer said she's moving bill fwd in committee.)
4:00 Kucinich honors Hunter's military service and brings up Rep Danny Davis. Now will he vote No on the funding? We need to ask him! Dem Rep Sestak supports the war.
(David Corn asks five senators if they think Obama has pushed hard enough for clean energy. They all try to not answer. Boxer says yes he's been doing it AND he should start doing it.)
4:05 We're about half done if they have the speakers. Each side has about 40 mins left, with the pro-war minutes split between Dems and Repubs.
So many Republican warmongers, so much love for Obama. Repub Rep Charles Dent quotes "our commander in chief".
Rep John Lewis urges everyone to vote for the resolution! Will HE vote against the funding??
(Rob Kall asks for talking points. Senator Boxer says You guys are the word smiths. Someone suggests, and the senators agre on this soundbyte: "Carbon pollution helps the terrorists." Sheesh. They want to help the wrong side of the war debate happening now in the House. Oh, and Boxer favors nuclear energy.)
4:20 Repub Rep Mike Pence speaks up for war and slaughter, and claims resolution is out of order because of the AUMF, as if the House can let a president start a war but can't end a war. "We are leaning into the fight."
5:42 I left the Senate's internet and have spent past hour in Verizon malfunctioning air card hell. Sorry. The debate is now nearing its end. Dan Lungren opposes ending war on an arbitrary date, even though resolution does not say that, and nobody has ever suggested what a nonarbitrary date would look like.
5:45 DK says troops in Afghanistan boosts the Taliban.
DK has 4 mins left, Repubs 30 secs, Pro-War Dems a few mins.
DK gives 2 mins to Barbara Lee.
Berman runs out of speakers.
5:52 DK closes the debate with his final remarks.
5:54 Recorded Vote for 15 mins begins now. Will be followed by other votes.
C-Span is replaying portions of the debate, including Rep Patrick Kennedy opposing the war and the media's refusal to cover the war debate -- he rightly calls the national press corpd "despicable". Will HE vote No on the funding now?
6:15 Dems voting yes has topped 38, meaning that if they were voting in good faith with the real intention to end the war, no more war funding could pass in a situation in which Republicans are all voting No for some unrelated reason.
6:18 We now see 48 Dems and 5 Repubs voting Yes thus far.
6:22 Now 57 Dems and 5 Repubs.
6:24 It's over. I think we got 65, with 60 Dems and 5 Repubs. Clerk has not posted roll call yet.
6:43 Here's the roll call.
Here are the Yes Votes:
Republicans are italicized.
|Jackson Lee (TX)
Johnson, E. B.
Sánchez, Linda T.
11:28 pm Here's Nadler:
Nadler Speaks Out Against Afghanistan War on House Floor
WEDNESDAY, 10 MARCH 2010
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) declared
his ongoing opposition to the U.S. military operation in Afghanistan
and announced he will vote in support of H.Con.Res.248. Nadler drew a
distinction between efforts to fight terrorism globally and the
current operations underway in Afghanistan.
“It is simply not justifiable to sacrifice more lives and more money
on this war,” said Nadler. “Today, our presence in Afghanistan has
become counterproductive, fueling the rising insurgency and
emboldening those who oppose foreign intervention or occupation of any
kind. We are bogged down amidst a longstanding civil war between
feuding Afghans of differing tribes, classes and regions, whose goals
have little to do with our own.” Nadler continues to advocate for
efforts to disrupt, dismantle, and destroy terrorist networks, but he
argued that using our armed forces to attack terrorist targets
wherever they may be is “quite distinct from using the military to
secure a nation so that it can be rebuilt.”
Nadler continued, “Rebuilding Afghanistan is beyond both our
capability, and our mandate to prevent terrorists from attacking the
United States. I believe that a short and definitive timetable for
withdrawing our troops is the only way to minimize further loss of
life and to refocus our efforts more directly at the terrorists
Nadler issued the following statement on the House floor:
“Mr. Chairman, I rise in support of this resolution.
“I am not convinced that the United States and its allies can end the
35-year civil war in Afghanistan -- nor is that our responsibility. We
should not use our troops to prop up a corrupt government. It is
simply not justifiable to sacrifice more lives and more money on this
war. We must rethink our policy. If we do not, we are doomed to
failure and to further loss of American lives.
“In late 2001, we undertook a justified military action in Afghanistan
in response to the attacks of 9/11, and, with moral clarity and
singular focus, we destroyed the al-Qaeda camps, drove the Taliban
from power, and pursued the perpetrators of mass-terrorism. I
supported that action. Today, however, our presence in Afghanistan has
become counterproductive. We are bogged down amidst a longstanding
civil war between feuding Afghans of differing tribes, classes and
regions, whose goals have little to do with our own.
“Moreover, our very presence in Afghanistan has fueled the rising
insurgency and emboldened those who oppose foreign intervention or
occupation of any kind. In seeking security and stability in
Afghanistan, we have supported corrupt leaders with interests out of
sync with the interests of ordinary Afghans. By backing the Afghan
government, we have further distanced ourselves from the Afghan people
and empowered the insurgency.
“If our mission in Afghanistan is indeed to prevent the safe harbor of
terrorists within a weak or hospitable nation, that mission is largely
accomplished, since we are told there are now fewer than 100 al-Qaeda
in Afghanistan. In reality, terrorist plots can be hatched anywhere,
in any nation, including our own. In fact, much of the planning for
the 9/11 attacks took place in Western Europe.
“This does not mean that we should stop pursuing terrorists. On the
contrary, we must continue the multi-pronged effort to disrupt,
dismantle and destroy their ability to harm the United States. We must
continue to track and block terrorist financing across the globe,
increase intelligence activities focused on terrorists, increase
diplomacy to rally our allies to our cause against terrorism, and, if
necessary, use our armed forces to attack terrorist targets wherever
they may be -- a function quite distinct from using the military to
secure a nation so that it can be rebuilt. Rebuilding Afghanistan is
beyond both our capability, and our mandate to prevent terrorists from
attacking the United States.
“I believe that a short and definitive timetable for withdrawing our
troops is the only way to minimize further loss of life and to refocus
our efforts more directly at the terrorists themselves.
I have some reservations that the resolution before us seems to leave
no room for a military role in Afghanistan under any circumstances.
“I believe we must reserve the right to use our armed forces to attack
terrorist targets wherever they may be, and that would include
terrorist training camps in Afghanistan, if they were re-established
there. But those camps are not there now, and our troops should not be
“Mr. Kucinich’s resolution points us in the right direction – a
direction far better than the direction in which we are now headed.
Accordingly, I urge approval of the Kucinich resolution.