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Democrats never did vote "for the Iraq War" - Talking Points

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jrd200x Donating Member (297 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 11:47 AM
Original message
Democrats never did vote "for the Iraq War" - Talking Points
Here's the FACTS.

The vote in Congress was not authorizing the President for war. It was not a resolution taken under the "War Powers Act" and it was not Congress excercising their Constitutional duty to declare war. This is evidenced by the fact that we never did officially declare war on Iraq. Only then could it be said that anyone voted "for the war."

What the Congress voted for was a non-binding resolution authorizing the President to use force in Iraq IF ALL OTHER AVENUES FAILED including weapons inspectors, United Nations, NATO, and diplomatic negotiations.

Since no diplomatic relations were attempted and Bush yanked the weapons inspectors (since they found nothing), and the UN was snookered by Powell's speech and the waving of a fake vial of "anthrax" around (he has since admitted his speech was full of lies), then Bush reneged on his promise to exhaust all avenues before commencing with "Shock and Awe."

In fact, the troops were on their way to Kuwait before the Congress even voted.

So, the Democrats, after hearing cooked up evidence (they did not see the same as Bush did, they saw the doctored version), and after agreeing that force could be used after all avenues were exhausted, did vote for the resolution.

They should have never trusted Bush to begin with.
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Upfront Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 11:52 AM
Response to Original message
1. They Knew!
I think they knew what they were doing. The vote met war and they were afraid to be seen as weak on terror. Sorry, but I don't buy it. It was wrong and they knew it.
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Toots Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 11:56 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. I agree with you, they knew, hell everyone knew
We all heard the reports of the major troop build up in Kuwait and around the area. They also knew the information was false but did not want to buck the political tide....Politics before America.....
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jrd200x Donating Member (297 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 11:56 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. We'll never know what the knew
We'll never know that - you may be right.

I was talking about what they actually did. And what they actually did is NOT vote for war.

That said, I think they probably knew where it would end up, but they were forced into it by the GOP spin machine that was successfully painting them as unpatriotic. They were way too worried about what people would think of them.

Yes, Dean was right.
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sellitman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 11:57 AM
Response to Reply #1
5. I think some knew and some didn't.
Unfortunately some of the Dems are as stupid and lazy as the Repukes and the crowd mentality thing kicked in.
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MrTriumph Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 12:05 PM
Response to Reply #1
9. Agreed. I don't buy it either. Congress had no record of oversight.
To say they never should have trusted Bush leads one to think there would be some oversight of Bush. But everyone in Congress knew there was no history of Congressional oversight of Bush.

They should not only apologize for their foolish vote, but also apologize for advocating war.
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mike_c Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 11:55 AM
Response to Original message
2. with all due respect... should get your head out of the sand. What you're suggesting is just more of the same tired, continued refusal to accept responsibility for what the dem enablers in Congress did.

What about the majority of dems who voted against the IWR? Were they not voting AGAINST war with Iraq?
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jrd200x Donating Member (297 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 12:00 PM
Response to Reply #2
6. Head out of the sand?
Sorry, I thought I was just commenting on facts. My head is not "in the sand." If you're going to get personal, at least have the decency to stay with the thread and not try to change the subject.

The facts are never "tired" or "old." They're just what happened.
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MrTriumph Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 12:09 PM
Response to Reply #6
10. FACT: Congress knew the vote was to go to war
Edited on Sat Dec-10-05 12:11 PM by MrTriumph
Get real. At the time it was painfully obvious Bush was taking us to war. That he had troops on the way prior to the vote is no surprising revelation.

All the details in the resolution were thoroughly ignored by Bush as expected.
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IndianaGreen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 12:00 PM
Response to Original message
7. We beat this horse to death during the 2004 Campaign
and there are irreconcilable differences of opinion on this topic. For example, Kerry advocate blm has her strongly held opinions about IWR which are diametrically opposed to my own strongly held opinions .

We got nothing to gain by continuing to whip this dead horse.

Let's move on!
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jrd200x Donating Member (297 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 12:02 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. Correcting the record is important
I'm not sure what we "move on" to if we don't correct the record of the facts. Moving on will only get us deeper into the crapper if we don't fix the perception of the Democrats.

What does "move on" mean in this situation? Yes, Bush has gotten us into a mess - are you advocating just leaving it?
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IndianaGreen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 12:17 PM
Response to Reply #8
12. No, what you are talking about is not "correcting" the record
but continue to refight old battles. Another example of this is the always fractious debate over the 2000 election and the impact of the Nader candidacy.

An academic environment is the proper forum in which to present papers on these issues. Right now, as our attention and energies are required in opposing the ultra-rightwing, any reopening of old wounds is tantamount to divisionism and revisionism.

We are not going to agree on a whole myriad of issues, the I/P conflict being another, so I am agreeable to moving on to what we have to deal with right now instead of wasting bandwidth re-fighting the past.

You may not agree with me on this, but I am confident that even those DUers that have disagreed with me in the past on IWR, will agree that it is more important to move forward and agree to disagree.

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Pithy Cherub Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 12:12 PM
Response to Original message
11. They knew, which made it doubly immoral to vote for IWR.
Edited on Sat Dec-10-05 12:15 PM by Pithy Cherub
They abdicated their responsibility to protect and defend the constitution of the United States of Amercia by voting on a resolution that allowed US troops to be deployed without Congress formally declaring war! They overtly enabled and allowed Bush to declare a de facto war. Senator Byrd explained it to them carefully and clearly on the Senate floor and they STILL willingly hung on to the coattails of Bush with all they were worth.

Secondly, in light of the abrogation of Bush in his responsibility as Commander in Chief, they have not called for an impeachment. Especially in the face of such a great magnitude of evidence of malfeasance in the preosecution of this illegal war. That is why the deservedly ashamed *Aye* voters are coming forth to separate themselves from such an immoral vote.

You are making excuses for politicians that should have known better and voted based on morals of the highest magnitude, not immediate political expediency. When it is a matter of Life and Death and they won't stand up with courage, it is beyond craveness to suggest they were duped.
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gulliver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 12:20 PM
Response to Original message
13. Dems are blowing this line of defense, IMO.
Trying to beat the rap on the IWR won't work. It is producing the "He said, she said" muddle that the Republicans want. In the end, the public will be left thinking the "Maybe the Dems voted for the war too."

I think a much more effective line of attack puts the burden of proof on Republicans, especially Bush. Bush must be forced to prove that he kept his side of the IWR bargain with the Congress. Namely, Bush has to prove that he sought, in your words, "ALL OTHER AVENUES."

At the presidential level, records are kept, orders are issued officially, and plans are made in writing. There is no other way to coordinate a large group of people. Ergo, there should be testimonial or written evidence that Bush sought other means to achieve our goals without invasion. Also, there should be evidence that Bush planned for the post-war as he has said. Why isn't there any?

At the presidential level, absence of evidence is evidence of absence. If Bush can't prove that he kept the IWR bargain he made with Congress, a bargain he asserts he kept to this day, then Bush will become the skunk in the trunk. The Dems can then proudly say they voted for the IWR to support their president across party lines, but the Republican administration, clearly and beyond a reasonable doubt, acted in bad faith.
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mmonk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 12:35 PM
Response to Original message
14. Won't fly
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killbotfactory Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 12:51 PM
Response to Original message
15. Bush never made a peaceful resolution an option
That's the whole point. Bush made war inevitable. Most people knew this before the IWR. The IWR represents craven political cowardice which has weakened our party. Instead of standing up for what is right, and losing, the pro-war democrats chose political expedience. Their lack of protest legitamized this criminal war.
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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 02:08 PM
Response to Original message
16. 156 mostly Democratic Senators and House members voted against the
Iraq war resolution. I remember the "Gulf of Tonkin" resolution back in the Vietnam War. Only TWO Senators voted against it (and no House members). I think this is why our corporate rulers have gone to so much trouble to get control over our election system (with "TRADE SECRET," PROPRIETARY software and firmware in the new electronic voting systems, controlled by Bushite corporations, Diebold and ES&S), and why the war profiteering corporate news monopolies propagandize us so much, and why the Bushites had to lie us into war. We are a peace-loving, justice-loving population, on the whole, and learned hard lessons in Vietnam, Nicaragua, El Salvador and other places, and that is now (or was in 2002) to some extent reflected in our representatives. 156 vs. 2. That's progress.

Financial corruption of the military-corporate variety is why this view was not more reflected in our representatives. 58% of the American people opposed the Iraq war before the invasion. Feb. '03. Yet the majority of Congress voted to give war powers to Bush anyway.

Which brings me to my main point. What the pro-IWR voters did, on that day, was a serious violation of the US Constitution, and their oaths of office. They may not have, technically, voted for invasion; but they gave their power to declare war (or to wage war WITHOUT a declaration) away to Bush. Our Founders designed the "balance of powers" in the Constitution specifically to PREVENT just such an usurpation of power by the executive on war. For Congress to just HAND IT TO HIM was a crime of the first magnitude--

And think about it. IF Congress had not done so, then the UN debate, and the WMD evidence, and Powell's 100% pack of lies speech, and the work of the UN inspectors would all have been evaluated by Congress. Not by Bush. By Congress! --in its rightful role as the ONLY entity in our government permitted to declare war. Many members of Congress felt that whatever threat Iraq posed could be handled by the UN inspectors and diplomacy. What Bush did, by preemptively invading, was to throw the UN inspectors out of the country only a few weeks before their very thorough inspections were finished. Congress could have insisted that the UN inspectors finish their job. What was the rush? What would those few weeks have mattered?

A "declaration of war" was supposed to be a deliberative matter, not a forced, executive-driven rush to war. That was the whole purpose of that provision of the Constitution. And any reasonable person could see--especially after the UN experts' exposure of the Niger (yellowcake acquisition) docs as forgeries--that there was no reason whatsoever to rush and start slaughtering tens of thousands of innocent people, and torturing many others.

The very same crime (violation of their oath of office) was committed by Congress in 1964.

"On August 7, 1964, Congress passes the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution marking the active involvement of the U.S. in the Vietnam War. The resolution approves retaliatory air raids against North Vietnam and allows the President to take all necessary measures to repel any armed attack against U.S. forces and to prevent further aggression in Vietnam. The act serves as the constitutional basis for the escalation of military activity in the region for the next 11 years. Johnson assures Congress, "As I have repeatedly made clear, the United States intends no rashness, and seeks no wider war" (Library of Congress). Johnson would later remark that the resolution was, "like grandma's nightshirt -- it covered everything' (Karnow)."

The two Senators who voted against the "Gulf on Tonkin" resolution were Wayne Morse (D-Ore) and Ernst Gruening (D-Alaska)--two very great heroes of our Republic. The precedent for Congress abdicating its responsibility to declare war was set back then. In 2002, Sen. Robert Byrd warned against the unconstitutionality of the IWR, but those who voted for it didn't listen. But 156 courageously voted "no," for which we should be very glad. They are:

Senate: 23 "no" votes

Daniel Akaka (D-HI)
Barbara Boxer (D-CA)
Jeff Bingaman (D-NM)
Robert Byrd (D-WV)
Kent Conrad (D-ND)
Jon Corzine (D-NJ)
Mark Dayton (D-MN)
Richard Durbin (D-IL)
Russ Feingold (D-WI)
Bob Graham (D-FL)
Patrick Leahy (D-VT)
Daniel Inouye (D-HI)
Edward Kennedy (D-MA)
Carl Levin (D-MI)
Barbara Mikulski (D-MD)
Patty Murray (D-WA)
Jack Reed (D-RI)
Paul Sarbanes (D-MD)
Debbie Stabenow (D-MI)
**Paul David Wellstone (D-MN)** May he rest in peace!
Ron Wyden (D-OR)

Lincoln Chafee (R-RI)
James Jeffords (I-VT)


House "No" votes: 133

Abercrombie (HI-01) Hastings, A. (FL-23) Neal (MA-02)
Allen, T. (ME-01) Hilliard (AL-07) Oberstar (MN-08)
Baca (CA-42) Hinchey (NY-26) Obey (WI-07)
Baird (WA-03) Hinojosa (TX-15) Olver (MA-01)
Baldacci (ME-02) Holt (NJ-12) Owens (NY-11)
Baldwin (WI-02) Honda (CA-15) Pallone (NJ-06)
Barrett (WI-05) Hooley (OR-05) Pastor (AZ-02)
Becerra (CA-30) Inslee (WA-01) Payne (NJ-10)
Blumenauer (OR-03) Jackson, J. (IL-02) Pelosi (CA-08)
Bonior (MI-10) Jackson-Lee, S. (TX-18) Price, D. (NC-04)
Brady, R. (PA-01) Johnson, E.B. (TX-30) Rahall (WV-03)
Brown, C. (FL-03) Jones, S. (OH-11) Rangel (NY-15)
Brown, S. (OH-13) Kaptur (OH-09) Reyes (TX-16)
Capps (CA-22) Kildee (MI-09) Rivers (MI-13)
Capuano (MA-08) Kilpatrick (MI-15) Rodriguez (TX-28)
Cardin (MD-03) Kleczka (WI-04) Roybal-Allard (CA-33)
Carson, J. (IN-10) Kucinich (OH-10) Rush (IL-01)
Clay (MO-01) LaFalce (NY-29) Sabo (MN-05)
Clayton (NC-01) Langevin (RI-02) Sanchez (CA-46)
Clyburn (SC-06) Larsen, R. (WA-02) Sawyer (OH-14)
Condit (CA-18) Larson, J. (CT-01) Schakowsky (IL-09)
Conyers (MI-14) Lee (CA-09) Scott (VA-03)
Costello (IL-12) Levin, S. (MI-12) Serrano (NY-16)
Coyne (PA-14) Lewis, John (GA-05) Slaughter (NY-28)
Cummings (MD-07) Lipinski (IL-03) Snyder (AR-02)
Davis, D. (IL-07) Lofgren (CA-16) Solis (CA-31)
Davis, S. (CA-49) Maloney, J. (CT-05) Stark (CA-13)
DeFazio (OR-04) Matsui (CA-05) Strickland (OH-06)
DeGette (CO-01) McCarthy, K. (MO-05) Stupak (MI-01)
Delahunt (MA-10) McCollum (MN-04) Thompson, B. (MS-02)
DeLauro (CT-03) McDermott (WA-07) Thompson, M. (CA-01)
Dingell (MI-16) McGovern (MA-03) Tierney (MA-06)
Doggett (TX-10) McKinney (GA-04) Towns (NY-10)
Doyle (PA-18) Meek, C. (FL-17) Udall, M. (CO-02)
Eshoo (CA-14) Meeks, G. (NY-06) Udall, T. (NM-03)
Evans (IL-17) Menendez (NJ-13) Velazquez (NY-12)
Farr (CA-17) Millender-McDonald (CA-37) Visclosky (IN-01)
Fattah (PA-02) Miller, George (CA-07) *Waters (CA-35)
Filner (CA-50) Mollohan (WV-01) Watson (CA-32)
Frank, Barney (MA-04) Moran, James (VA-08) Watt, M. (NC-12)
Gonzalez (TX-20) Nadler (NY-08) Woolsey (CA-06)
Gutierrez (IL-04) Napolitano (CA-34) Wu (OR-01)

Sanders (VT-AL)

Duncan (TN-02) Houghton (NY-31) Morella (MD-08)
Hostettler (IN-08) Leach (IA-01) Paul (TX-14)

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