Wednesday, June 28, 2006

McConnell Admits GOP Knew About Casey's Redeployment Proposal, Even As They Blasted Democrats' Similar Plan

See if you can follow along with the "conservative" version of logic.

Last week, Senate Republicans -- following the Bush Administration's wishes -- led an effort to kill a proposal by Sens. Carl Levin (D-MI) and Jack Reed (D-RI) that would have required a redeployment to begin by the end of the year but not set a timetable for a complete withdrawal.

Many conservatives labeled the Levin-Reed proposal a "cut-and-run" policy.

At the time, the conventional wisdom was that this was partisanship, but at the same time signified a policy difference between the parties. Democrats wanted a timetable to allow for the gradual withdrawal of U.S. troops -- in keeping with Bush's frequent statements that as the Iraqi troops "step up," the U.S.-led coalition will "step down," the wishes of Iraqi leaders (here, here and here, among others), and the wishes of a majority of Americans.

Republicans, it appeared, disagreed. And that was fine -- a clear policy difference that may have been a campaign issue come November.

But then Americans learned that at roughly the same time that Senate Republicans were denouncing the Levin-Reed proposal, the top American commander in Iraq, Gen. George Casey, had briefed the administration on a plan to reduce U.S. troops in Iraq, with the first cuts perhaps coming by September, and much deeper cuts coming in 2007.

Although the plan was conceptually similar to the one proposed by Levin and Reed, the same conservatives said it was not a "cut-and-run" policy.

Why label one but not the other?

The simple answer is that these conservatives are employing a double standard. The official reasons -- the ones being spouted by those Republican Congressman who last week thought name calling was good public policy -- seem murky. Read the quotes from most conservative Republicans, and you won't find much information on substantive differences between the plans. Instead, you'll hear partisan politics.

For example, Senate Majority Whip Mitch McConnell (R-KY) told ABC's This Week that "Congress ought not to be dictating to the generals what the tactics are."

That may be true. But it doesn't explain why one plan is "cut and run" and the other isn't.

Furthermore, McConnell said that Republican lawmakers were aware of Casey's plan before voting against the Levin-Reed proposal. In other words, even though Republicans knew a similar plan was being hatched by Gen. Casey, they nonetheless took the partisan and immature route -- substituting name-calling for reasonable debate.

(This also apparently confirms that JABBS' speculation from a few days ago was correct -- that Vice President Cheney also knew about Casey's gameplan when he told CNN's John King that the Democrats' plans for troop redeployment were "the worst possible thing we could do.")

***

If the Democrats are smart, they'll remind voters again and again that "we're in sync with General Casey," as Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) told CBS. And they'll remind voters that Republicans cared more about partisan politics than policy -- at a time when more than 2,500 U.S. troops have been killed.

11 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

OT, but doesn't Mitch McConnell look just like a dead baby bird?

8:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Baby bird? No, I'd say he looks like what a Cabbage Patch Doll would look like grown up.

10:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe Mitch could sneek an earmark in to a bill for a chin, maybe an upper lip too.

11:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Republicans got what they wanted. The "cut and run" label has stuck and hardly countered in the MSM so far with the hypocritical episode described above. It will continue to stick with listless middle America.
I agree the Dems should use the "We're in synch with General Casey" theme. They should also play up how the Republicans in Congress have destroyed their strong homeland security protection measures.

12:51 PM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

either use the "we're in synch" theme, or just run a commercial showing footage from the correspondents dinner, when Bush made jokes about not being able to find the WMD -- when 500 troops had already died.

or maybe the Democrats could run a commercial listing all of the corporate subsidies and welfare provided by the Congressional Republicans, especially to such "poor" companies like ExxonMobil.

The more educated Americans are, the more likely they are to stop believing mindless, useless conservative spin, hype, faux anger and catch-phrases.

3:11 PM  
Anonymous diamondsndust said...

What else would you expect from a bunch of lying, thieving, treasonous shitbag chickenhawks?

6:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Because they're assholes. Haven't figured that out yet?
Redstone

6:13 PM  
Anonymous Gen. Patton returns said...

Blah, Blah, Blah. So nobody wanted to side with a Democrat plan that is essentially the same as Big-Bad General Casey's plan. BFD. Wake up JAABS. Nobody wants to be associated with the LOSER Democrat party, which will continue to lose whether they're plan is endorsed by General Nonesense or not. Lest we forget, that the Democrats called for a vote on this issue within hours of the American people finding out that two of our boys had been tortured and their heads cut off and their dead bodies boobie trapped. Great time to call for a troop withdrawal. It makes us look like a bunch of God Damn Cowards. They should all be pistol whipped.

6:43 PM  
Blogger thewaronterrible said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

9:13 AM  
Anonymous thewaronterrible said...

Gen. Patton should be aware of polls showing the majority of Americans in favor of the Democratic/Gen. Casey positions

Check this link.

As for "LOSER" Democratic party, they are favored over Republicans on every issue except for terrorism.
Check this link.

This brings to mind what I initially intended to post before becoming distracted by Gen. Patton.
We have seen good ideas expressed on this particular JABBS post on the kind of campaign the Democrats need to run to win in November. Unfortunately, we are already seeing signs that the Dems will blow it. Dem. Sen. Charles Schumer recently expressed that all the Dems have to do is take advantage of Bush unpopularity to win, and do not need to have a clear plan on Iraq and terrorism.

Check this link.

Wrong. That is a formula for disaster. The Dems have to emphasize as stated here that their Iraq plan aligns with that of the General, and that they do have strong positions on combating terrorism that they have been unable to pass through the Republican brick wall set up in Congress.
The idea that Republicans are stronger on terrorism is perhaps the largest Rovian myth perpetrated on Americans. It is time for the Democrats to use hard facts to dispel that myth.

11:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Democrastinators need to start the Impeachment charges for treason now, while we still have some sort of cajones left

6:30 PM  

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