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A New Strategy to Force a Debate on Iraq on the House Floor


Because every bill to investigate war lies or end the war is killed in committee, leaders of the Out of Iraq Caucus are seeking to collect the signatures of a majority of Congress Members on a discharge petition, which would force a real and open debate of the war onto the floor of the House. The discharge petition is using H.J.Res. 55 as a vehicle, but once the debate begins, the content of any other bill can be offered as an amendment.

Current list of signatures.

Ask Congress to End the War

Statement from Congresswoman Maxine Waters
Contact: Mikael Moore (202)225-2201

Washington, DC - Today, twenty members of the 'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus held a press conference to announce the beginning of a drive to secure 218 signatures for a discharge petition on H J Res 55, a bill authored by Congressman Neil Abercrombie (HI) and Congressman Walter Jones (NC). If passed by Congress, H J Res 55 would require the President to begin bringing US soldiers home from Iraq.

Attending the press conference were Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Congressman William Delahunt, Congresswoman Barbara Lee, Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey, Congressman Neil Abercrombie, Congressman Xavier Becerra, Congressman William Lacy Clay, Congressman Sam Farr, Congressman Barney Frank, Congresswoman Sheila Jackson-Lee, Congresswoman Stephanie Tubbs Jones, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, Congresswoman Carolyn Kilpatrick, Congressman Dennis Kucinich, Congressman Jim McDermott, Congressman Jim McGovern, Congressman Major Owens, Congressman Jose Serrano, Congresswoman Hilda Solis, and Congresswoman Diane Watson.

The discharge petition was filed on November 9, 2005. It ripens after seven legislative days, after which Members of Congress may sign it. If 218 Members sign, H J Res 55 would be discharged from the committees of jurisdiction and scheduled for debate by the entire House of Representatives. Under the terms of the discharge petition, up to seventeen hours of debate would be permitted and all germane amendments would be considered, including amendments that would move up the date in which US soldiers begin to return.

"Today, we saw a bold move by members of the 'Out of Iraq' Caucus to defy the House leadership. We filed a discharge petition on H J Res 55 to force a debate on the Iraq war, a debate that Congress has refused to have so far," said Congresswoman Waters, the Chairwoman of the 'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus. "Twenty members of the 'Out of Iraq' Caucus stood shoulder to shoulder saying, 'Enough is enough. We must end this war.' The American people deserve answers to the many questions surrounding this war, the most important of which is when will our soldiers return home? By discharging the Abercrombie/Jones bill from Committee and having a full debate on the war, we can begin to answer those questions."

Congressman Abercrombie, the author of H J Res 55, said, "The Republican leadership will find it hard to dismiss our discharge effort, because H J Res 55 spans the partisan divide. It has both Democrat and Republican cosponsors, and it reflects a growing body of opinion that Congress owes the public a full and open debate on Iraq."

Congressman Jim McGovern said, "I believe this war was a mistake from the very beginning. And there are two things you can do with a mistake - you can correct it or you can compound it. H J Res 55 is an attempt to correct this mistake by requiring the President to develop and implement a meaningful plan to end our military involvement in Iraq. Additionally, I have introduced legislation, HR 4232, to immediately end funding for the war. Both of these are better than 'staying the course,' as the Bush Administration would have us do which would only compound the mistakes we have made in Iraq. That is unacceptable."

Several Members in attendance said that they believed that Members of both parties could support this discharge petition because it simply asks that the US Congress debate the Iraq war.

Congresswoman Woolsey said, "We're again calling on the President to lead us out of this quagmire - to stop the continued loss of American and Iraqi lives by bringing U.S. troops home. The devastating truth is that Americans are not safer because of this war. That's not the fault of the men and women wearing the uniform. It's the result of incompetent leadership from the White House whose first casualty was the truth."

Congresswoman Lee said, "The President's rhetoric of staying the course and the idea of proceeding without a plan or any measurable objectives are unacceptable. That's why the discharge petition to bring H J Res 55 to the House floor to force Congress to have a real debate-about this war and how we end it-is imperative."

The 'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus was formed in June 2005 to pressure the Administration into concluding the war in Iraq. It has 70 members.

____________________

Media Advisory from the 'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus

Contact: Mikael Moore(202) 225-2201

What: Announce a discharge petition strategy on H J Res 55, Congressman Abercrombie's and Congressman Walter Jones' resolution to begin bringing US troops home from Iraq.

When: Wednesday, November 16, 2005 at 9:30 AM

Where: 1539 Longworth House Office Building

Who: 'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus Co-Founders:
Rep. Maxine Waters, Chair,
Rep. Lynn Woolsey, Co-Founder,
Rep. John Conyers, Co-Founder,
Rep. Charles Rangel, Co-Founder,
Rep. Barbara Lee, Co-Founder,
Rep. Jan Schakowsky, Co-Founder,
Rep. William Delahunt, Co-Founder,
Rep. John Lewis, Co-Founder, and

'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus Strategy Committee Members:

Rep. Neil Abercrombie,
Rep. Barney Frank,
Rep. Martin Meehan,
Rep. James McGovern,
Rep. William Lacy Clay,
Rep. Diane Watson,
Rep. John Larson, and

Other members of the 'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus

The 'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus was founded in June 2005 to pressure the Administration to end the war in Iraq. It has 69 members.

A discharge petition is a House rule that permits members to bring to the floor for consideration a measure not reported from committee if 218 members sign the petition.

H J Res 55 calls on the President to begin bringing US troops home from Iraq no later than October 1, 2006.

A complete list of the 'Out of Iraq' Caucus members is below.

Rep. Maxine Waters, Chair, Founder
Rep. Lynn Woolsey, Co-Founder
Rep. John Conyers, Co-Founder
Rep. Charlie Rangel, Co-Founder
Rep. Barbara Lee, Co-Founder
Rep. Jan Schakowsky, Co-Founder
Rep. William Delahunt, Co-Founder
Rep. John Lewis, Co-Founder
Rep. Neil Abercrombie
Rep. Tammy Baldwin
Rep. Xavier Becerra
Rep. Corrine Brown
Rep. Sherrod Brown
Rep. Lois Capps
Rep. Michael Capuano
Rep. Julia Carson
Rep. Donna Christensen
Rep. William Lacy Clay
Rep. Elijah Cummings
Rep. Danny Davis
Rep. Lloyd Doggett
Rep. Lane Evans
Rep. Sam Farr
Rep. Chaka Fattah
Rep. Bob Filner
Rep. Barney Frank
Rep. Raul Grijalva
Rep. Luis Gutierrez
Rep. Maurice Hinchey
Rep. Rush Holt
Rep. Michael Honda
Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee
Rep. Stephanie Tubbs-Jones
Rep. Marcy Kaptur
Rep. Carolyn Kilpatrick
Rep. Dennis Kucinich
Rep. John Larson
Rep. Jim McDermott
Rep. James McGovern
Rep. Cynthia McKinney
Rep. Michael McNulty
Rep. Carolyn Maloney
Rep. Edward Markey
Rep. Marty Meehan
Rep. George Miller
Rep. Gwen Moore
Rep. Jim Moran
Rep. Grace Napolitano
Rep. Richard Neal
Rep. Eleanor Holmes-Norton
Rep. James Oberstar
Rep. John Olver
Rep. Major Owens
Rep. Frank Pallone
Rep. Donald Payne
Rep. Nick Rahall
Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard
Rep. Bobby Rush
Rep. Linda Sanchez
Rep. Bobby Scott
Rep. Jose Serrano
Rep. Hilda Solis
Rep. Pete Stark
Rep. Bennie Thompson
Rep. John Tierney
Rep. Ed Towns
Rep. Nydia Velázquez
Rep. Diane Watson
Rep. Albert Wynn

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It's time to end this illegal war/occupation and bring our troops home. The next step is to impeach Bush and drive his administration out of Washington. Congratulations to the Democrats listed above, but they need to get more aggressive.

Or do I need to do anything to get Congressman Jim Moran to join in?

I am proud of the fact that my Congressional Representitive from New Jersey, Frank Pallone is a member of the "Out of Iraq Caucus". Now that Rep. John Murtha has made it clear that he feels our mission in Iraq has been accomplished and supports bringing our troops home now, it's about time for the rest of the Democrats get off their butts and join the desires of the majority of the American population.

The American people are finally waking up to the fact that the War in Iraq was a mistake. It's time for the rest of the Democrats in Washington to also wake up.

It is time. If not a sudden withdrawl, let's have a measured withdrawl, with completion being sooner rather than later. Bush made a mistake by invading the country in the first place. How many more families will have to pay for his silliness by giving up their loved ones?

It it time. Let's get out.

I am appalled that the GOP claim to be patriots asking us to support the troops. The Republicans have under-equipped our soldiers, sent them in insufficient numbers while they closed VA Hospitals, and slashed funding to the Veteran's Administration. Those jerks can claim patriotism when they truly support the troops!! I am also appalled by the fact that chemical weapons, depleted uranium shells & nephalm were used by our troops. Weren't the use of such weapons what made Saddam such an evil man? How could we expect the Iraqi people to be other than insurgents? They have scarce access to fresh water, little security and are still subjected to torture. This had been the most secular country in the mideast - if it isn't now we only have ourselves to blame.

make love, not war

To Whom It May Concern;

It was a violation of our Constitution to go into Iraq in the first place. Removing the troops from Iraq is nothing more than restoring constitutionality. The majority of Americans want to support the troops by bringing them home. Does Congress dare flout the will of the people?

My representative, Bill Reynolds, will NEVER agree, but I wish I could hear similar sentiments from my Senators, Schumer and Clinton!

IMPEACH THEM ALL

Where is the outrage over the malfeasance and dereliction of duty by this administrationof whores ?

Get out of Iraq NOW!!!

i support an end to the war in iraq.

It is time to stand up to the administration of liars. We need a plan to get out of Iraq we are hearing the same propaganda of Vietnam there is no honor in the death of our troops. We continue to kill innocent people, torture in the name of democracy and fight against a group that do not want our type of Democracy. The American people want integrity in our government it is so obviously missing with the Bush Whitehouse.

Let's not shout anymore....let's talk about the issue seriously.

As we are in Iraq through distorted information and neo-conservative ideology about oil and control, an agreement to begin deployment will save American lives. Those who twisted televised data for public support must be brought before an investigative body. Many have died and more have suffered, axcept for those corporations and privatizations that profit from war, as President Eisenhower warned us in 1960.

History will show the members of the 'Out of Irq' Caucus to be the true patriots.
More terrorists are being created the longer we stay in Iraq.

Endless torture is torturture for everyone. Give all involved a date for hope to begin. Otherwise it is only the President that gains from all of this; Not America, Americans, nor Iraq's! There are no weapons, and Sadam is gone, all reasons for being there are null and void, we are DONE!
What in the world ARE we there for anyway? If Americans do not know of any plan, I am sure the Iraq's don't either. How can they take over if they are left in the dark?

I think it outstanding that the number of people signed on to this out of war caucuss has grown so fast. I commend them all for their courage and dignity in a time when those words are rarely used when speaking of govt.

This administration thinks we should investigate who leaked the information about secret camps we run in foreign countries. But they don't want to talk about the camps or what we do there. Just who let it come out.

They don't think we need to investigate how we got into the war, information used (which was totally wrong), or how they spun that information. The republican's in the house and senate want to question the patriotism of anybody that questions what they do.

These same people thought it was pertinent to our national defense to investigate whether Clinton lied about having extra marital sex. To them lying about oral sex is an impeachment offense and getting over 2000 americans dead is not.

More and more our government is starting to resemble the dictators in Latin America. The term national defense is beginning to mean protecting them from the nation finding out what they are up to.

I believe most Americans will remember this come next November. Now do the right thing, and save your jobs.

If Iraq is to have real democracy with real elections, US troop withdrawal should be on their December ballot. Its the first and foremost thing affecting their lives every single day.

Massachusetts rocks! Thanks to Reps. Marty Meehan, Barney Frank, and James McGovern for leading the way.

It's time to leave Iraq as soon as possible.

Dear President Ford:

It is time to bring our troops home. The Crusades are over; none of us will live longer enough to refight them. So,let us bring home the troops because we cannot convert the world.

Impeach Bush for lying about the war in Iraq and for lying about the resons to go to war in Iraq

It's time to end this illegal war/occupation and bring our troops home. The next step is to impeach Bush and drive his administration out of Washington.

Finnally someone said what they believe and is NOT AFARID OF THE BUSH ADMIN. ITS ABOUT TIME TIRED OF ALL BLOW AND NO GO. WE HAVE MORE OF A BUSH/CHENEY DICTATOR SHIP THAN A AMERICA.

FIRST OFF,BY NOW MOST AMERICANS KNOW WHAT MOST OF THE WORLD KNEW 4 YEARS AGO. THAT IS, IRAQ DID NOT ATTACK AMERICA ON 9-11-01. NOW THAT MOST AMERICANS ARE FINALLY ON BOARD WITH THAT FACT, IT IS TIME TO START LOOKING INTO GETTING OUT WITHOUT ANY FURTHER DAMAGE. IF WE WAIT FOR THE BUSH ADMINSTRATION, WE WILL HAVE A LONG WAIT. CONSIDERING HOW THEY BLUNDERED THEIR WAY INTO IRAQ AND HOW THEY HANDLED HURRICANE KATRINA, WE CAN'T TRUST THIS ADMINISTRATION. SO, WE NEED TO DO IT OURSELVES AND CONGRESSMAN MURTHA HAS COME UP WITH A WORKABLE SOLUTION. THE TIME IS NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It's time to cut our losses and bring the troops home from Iraq. We never should have been there to begin with, enough bloodshed!

Please fight to get the troops out. I am so tired of this adminstration and there lies

Get out now while we can. I'm tired of American boys and girls dieing. We should never have gotten in this war. This was Mr. Bushes pay back time, never thinking of any one else. M

It is my sincere hope that we will not only get out of Iraq immediately, but that the WAR CRIMINALS Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld will be brought to TRIAL before the WORLD for their crimes against HUMANITY.

As the previous administration was the most receptive to this idea since Jimmy Carter, my first favorite president. I was hoping we would have stayed the course for peace during Clinton's administration and got the No War Amendment through while there was an administration that was willing to support this. Now it looks like it will be a bloody battle on the homefront, to get this passed. With nuclear devices already released for daily use (airbags), that no nuke amendment sounds even better too.

The facts have proven that the United States had no business invading Iraq.

This was an unnecessary war that has cost thousands of Americans their lives and billions of dollars in U.S. treasury.

I'm tired of hearing news sound bites of President Bush and Dick Cheney attempting to sell the same old rhetoric. Only a moron would now believe the proven falsehoods they've cleverly sold to the American public in the past.

Former US Secretary of State Colin Powell was alleged to have told President Bush before the Iraq invasion: "If you break it, you own it."

Well President Bush, it seems that indeed you did "break it," so now "you own it." However, the question remains...Why do the rest of us have to pay?

people say if we leave iraq it will be chaos. news flash iraq is already in chaos! 80% of iraqis want us out. it is their country. as far as cheney's assertion that it will send the wrong message to the terrorists, that is malarky. he was wrong or lied about wmd's, he was wrong or lied about the iraq-al-quaida connection, he was wrong or lied about how it would be a cakewalk, he was wrong or lied about us being greeted as liberators, in fact he has been wrong or lying about everything. we need to get out of iraq. and the sooner the better.

Since it is obvious that the cowards like Bush and Cheney and their storm troopers in the Congress have used this war for their own gains, they do not care what the American people think. The only way to stop the killing of our young troops, and end this war is to go after Bush's support at the grass roots. Get people to the polls in 2006 and replace the right-wing neo-cants in Congress. We can get an honest effort in Congress to address what the majority of Americans want: Our sons and daughters, fathers and mothers, home from Iraq. We need to get rid of the Delays, the mean jeans, and get on with impeachment of the crooks and liars who have soiled Americas White House since their 2000 coup.

I'ts time to hold the people responsible for this mess accountable! It is not enough to blame the intelligence community! People are dying, and our esteem in the world has diminished, and our economy will never be the same! It is congress who sets policy, do your job! do the right thing! Get out of Iraq Now!

To Democrats in Congress. Maintain your backbone and keep up the pressure against those Republicans (and Democrats!) who continue to support this illegal and unconsionable war in Iraq. Thank you to those who have had the courage to speak out against the war and demand that our troops leave immediately. The American people are sick of this disgusting war and the corrupt and lying administration that led us into it. The next step is to impeach Bush, Cheney and the rest of the corrupt crew in the White House.

This war is based on a pack of lies, from an adminstration that cannot tell the truth. There are members of Congress that either can't tell the truth or don't want to face the truth. Shame on them for not Pushing the Issue. Our soldiers are fighting for nothing. THEY NEED TO BE HOME NOW, NOT WHEN GEORGE W. BUSH AND HIS CRONIES SAY WHEN!! WE THE PEOPLE HAVE SPOKEN - PEACE, NO MORE WAR!! LET IRAQ STAND AND BE A COUNTRY. THEY HAVE HELD ELECTIONS, AND THEY HAVE A CONSTITUTION. STOP PICKING ON SEN. MURTHA, HE HAS GUTS TO STAND UP AND MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

YES, CONGRESS SHOULD DEBATE. CUT OUT THE NAME CALLING AND THE SHUTTING DOWN OF SOMEONE WHEN THEY ARE SPEAKING. I SUPPORT THESE MEMBERS OF CONGRESS THAT SUPPORT THIS DISCHARGE PETITION. AS FOR THE REST OF THEM, IMPEACH THEM ALL!!!!

We were told by the Bush Administration we needed to invade Iraq to make sure Saddam Hussein could not produce weapons to use against us or to sell to Al Qaeda so they could use them against us. We found no WMDs and Saddam is in custody awaiting trial for crimes against humanity. Now the Bush administration tells us we have to "stay the course" to help Iraq build a democracy, and/or to prove something to the insurgents. Does that mean we will soon be invading every country that isn't an American-style democracy? Maybe it means we want to seize Iraq's oilfields. Neither one of those is what our Congress voted on when they authorized the President to invade Iraq.

We accomplished what the President said we needed to when we invaded Iraq. Meanwhile our soldiers are serving as targets for every pissed-off islamic extremist in the middle east and not accomplishing anything. Redeploy them now.

Has any one considered, Saddam Hussein is one of many complaintants, almost a billion in this country. The Iraq mirror was opened to Utah for this very reason. I felt Utah had a lot to learn from Iraq. The current car bomb (airbag with solid rocket generate) was offered to that country to build so they could have a world economy. Iraq refused to build the product for Utah, a declared it a nuclear device, which it was. Since Utah couldn't get the product built external to itself anywhere in the world, Utah "built it better" themselves right at home. Every arguement has been made on this side of the ocean, trying to declare it illegal product to begin with, however, those were all Federal level laws Utah chooses not to support at this time. Transit explosive active was one arguement. Failed nuclear device with no fail safes was another. Bio-explosive due to the ingredients of the cyclinders is a gas that is regulated to stay contained during use. Similar to puron, halon, freon, the ingredient is Argon. Thus, the avian flu was an environmental arguement in a massive duck kill that occurs every fall during migration over the plant in Brigham City, UT, Temonton, UT and surrounding areas. It is a 6 county disaster, with toxic dumping creating a rather large fish kill also. Since no disposal was needed, bad lots of solid rocket generate were dumped. To prevent environmental contamination, there are not bad lots of rocket fuel any more. It all sales through with a deployment (destabilized detonation) rate that is very unpredictable. 1995 arguement "unpredictable deployment" is justification for recall and product termination. Saddam Hussein is just one of billions of complaintants on this issue.

We went to 'war' based on lies and misinformation. Our focus should be on bringing the members of the whitehouse, who fabricated these lies, to justice. Enough innocent people have died and continue to die in Iraq. Our debt is immeasurable, the pain and suffering caused by this war may be something many will never recover from. It's time to take a stand and GET OUT!!!

We need real answers and real actions.

Who could be so compelling as a man who has experienced war? Certainly neither Bush nor Cheney has a leg to stand on.

Yes, it's way past time to exit Iraq, especially since it was totally foolish to wage war there in the first place. Democrats need to replace the Republicans in the 2006 elections, and then impeachment should follow. Every soldier who has been killed in this senseless war has died in vain.

All I can say is, now that we are over there, thanks to Bush, we can see that his plans are not working! In fact things are getting much worse in Iraq and many other places. We need to finish up & get our men and women out of there, but not with Bush in control. We need a whole new set of people that can get the job done as Bush's administration sure has proved that their way is not working!!!
Impeach Bush & Cheney & replace his administration with decent honest, intelligent, caring people PLEASE!!!!! How can these criminals still be in control. I just don't get it.

I am a U.S. soldiers father. I support our troops and I believe the best way to support them is to begin to withdraw them from Iraq immediately.

As a permanently disabled Viet Nam Vet, I know first hand the consequences of going to war. If the truth be told of the what the long range outloook for Viet Nam had been told, I probably would have not have enlisted in the USMC, and would have spared myself 38+ yrs. of paraplegia.
Rep. Murtha, knows himself what a quagmire Viet Nam had become, and how strategically bad it was waged from the stanpoint of a soldier there. It has become apparent to me, and obviously to Rep. Murtha, that this war with Iraq was not well thought out, and may well be a dead end from a military point of view. Even the Iraqi's are now looking for the US to withdraw it's presence there soon.
Based on vague intelligence, and what may well have been bending the info to fit the situation that was favorable for a pre-emptive attack on Iraq, is not an excuse to continue to spend huge sums of taxpayer monies, and the loss of precious US military personnel. There is a time to "fish or cut bait", and I believe we need to "cut bait" at this point. Thank you!

I am so very greatful that a strong postive step has been taken to bring our troops home. I am so very happy that someone we gave the power of the pen to has finally decided to use it on our behalf.

This war was built on lies and we must do what we can to oust this President now before he destroys our country beyond repair.

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