Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Kerry Is First Aboard Feingold-Reid Bill

John Kerry (D-MA) on Monday became the first Senator to join Russ Feingold (D-WI) and Harry Reid (D-NV) in cosponsoring the legislation just announced by Feingold that calls for a halt to all funding for George W. Bush's Iraq war if Bush vetoes the recently-passed supplemental funding bill, mandating a withdrawal of all troops from the Iraq quagmire.

“President Bush has once again decided to ignore reality and ignore the will of Congress by pledging to veto a new policy for Iraq,” said Kerry. “In the face of the Administration’s stubborn unwillingness to change course, the Senate has no choice but to force a change of course. Our brave American troops deserve nothing less than a policy that is equal to their sacrifice."

And Kerry reinforced the message he has been delivering since he ran for president in 2004.

“I am pleased to be an original co-sponsor of legislation that Senator Feingold plans to introduce which will change the military mission and enforce the Senate’s one year deadline for redeploying most U.S. troops from Iraq," said the Massachusetts Senator. "The message it sends is simple: no more open ended commitment, no more putting American troops in the middle of an Iraqi civil war. The American mission in Iraq will be to train Iraqis and chase Al Qaeda, not do for Iraqis what they must do for themselves. With this legislation, the Senate makes it clear we mean business."

This kind of tough stance is nothing new for Kerry, who joined with Feingold in July of 2006 to set a one-year deadline for the redeployment of most American combat troops. While the original Kerry-Feingold legislation garnered only 13 votes, last week's majority vote on a strikingly similar bill shows that most Senators can now see that Kerry and Feingold were right nine months ago.

Said Kerry: “There is no military solution to the violence in Iraq, and a meaningful deadline is necessary to get Iraqis to stand up for Iraq and start making tough political compromises. I look forward to continuing the fight for a policy that can work in Iraq.”