Support Murtha, Vote Present
November 18, 2005 - 6:42pm ET
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As I write this, the House is scrambling to figure out what to do about a cynical GOP maneuver to stem the flood of discontent over Bush's war in Iraq. Rep. Duncan Hunter has sponsored a resolution designed to misrepresent yesterday's brave call by Rep. John Murtha. Murtha called for the termination of the deployment at the earliest practicable time, the redeployment of our forces in the Gulf, and the use of diplomatic efforts to stabilize Iraq.
Here's what Murtha offered:
- The deployment of United States forces in Iraq, by direction of Congress, is hereby terminated and the forces involved are to be redeployed at the earliest practicable date.
- A quick-reaction U.S. force and an over-the-horizon presence of U.S Marines shall be deployed in the region.
- The United States of America shall pursue security and stability in Iraq through diplomacy.
Rep. Hunter's bill, however, calls merely for the immediate termination of the U.S. deployment to Iraq. Here's the exact language:
- That it is the sense of the House of Representatives that the deployment of United States forces in Iraq be terminated immediately.
By proposing this legislation, Duncan Hunter is calling for America to cut and run. Whether that's his policy or a tactic, it must be stopped. Voting "No," however, plays into their cynical hands.
Murtha's simple and straightforward plan allows the United States to do exactly what is necessary: support a diplomatic peace process; redeploy in a manner that allows the U.S. to support the results of that peace process and restore stability to the oil-rich Persian Gulf, and bring our troops home.
And it just so happens that the peace process started today.
To support Rep. Murtha, our troops and the people of Iraq, Democrats and thinking Republicans need to vote "Present." Only a "present" vote can send the message to the Republican leadership and the White House that it is time to change course in Iraq and that changing course does not me "out now" or "cut-and-run."
The only person to call for "cut-and-run" is Rep. Duncan Hunter himself.
Vote "Present." Send the right message.
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