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Ten Heroes in Congress Make a Stand for Peace
Here are the results of the March 23, 2007, vote in the U.S. House of Representatives to give Bush and Cheney over $100 billion more for war. The bill passed with exactly the 218 votes required. Almost all of the Republicans and six Democrats voted No for the wrong reasons. One Democrat voted "Present". But eight Democrats voted No because they oppose further funding of this war. These eight are the beginning of a movement for peace, and the first indication that some Democrats, even under the most intense pressure not to, will be willing to oppose Speaker Pelosi when she takes the wrong stance. This will be required if a movement for impeachment is ever to take hold in Congress. Here are the eight with links to contact and thank them:
About the heroes:
Dennis Kucinich of Ohio has been a leader against funding the war. He made this statement on the floor prior to the vote, and this statement the day before, as well as this one. He urged everyone to lobby their congress members for No votes. On March 21, he made this statement, and this one on March 19. Kucinich is the sponsor of this bill to defund the war. Here is his website, and his presidential campaign website.
John Lewis of Georgia has been a leading advocate for civil rights and peace for many years. He gave a remarkable speech on the floor in the lead up to the vote, for which the Backbone Campaign presented him with a Backbone Award. Here is his website.
Barbara Lee of California is the Co-Chair of the Progressive Caucus and the author of an amendment that would have limited all funding in the bill to a withdrawal. She is the sponsor of this bill to prevent an attack on Iran. Here is her website.
Mike McNulty of New York is less well known to the national peace movement. He quietly made the right vote and released this statement explaining that his brother had been killed in Vietnam and that he did not want to fund a similar war. Here is his website.
Mike Michaud of Maine is also little known to the national peace movement. But he has cosponsored a number of good bills aimed at ending the war, including Jack Murtha's bill for redeployment, Abercrobie and Jones' bill for withdrawal, Lee's and Allen's bills for no permanent bases, Woolsey's bill for a withdrawal plan, Price and Miller's bill for a withdrawal plan, and Evans' bill to fund VA health care. Michaud also voted against a war funding bill in 2004. On the Iraq section of his website, Michaud states his support for bills to end the war, oppose the recent escalation, ban permanent bases, and demand accountability for war spending. Here is his website.
Maxine Waters of California is the chair of the Out of Iraq Caucus and a leader of the peace movement. In recent weeks and on the day before the vote, she has participated in conference calls with the peace movement organized by United for Peace and Justice. In February, she made this statement against the escalation of the war. Here is her website.
Lynn Woolsey of California is, along with Barbara Lee, a Co-Chair of the Progressive Caucus. She has appeared frequently in the print and broadcast media in the days leading up to the vote as a clear voice for opposing the funding of the war. Here is a video of her speaking at a peace rally the weekend before the vote. Here is video, audio, and transcript of a debate she took one side of on Democracy Now! Woolsey is the sponsor of this bill to defund the war. Here is her website, which includes videos of her floor speeches. She made this statement on the day of the vote.
And number nine...
Libertarian Ron Paul, of Texas, while no progressive on most issues, voted No for many of the right reasons.