Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Republicans defeat Pelosi and the pro-war Democrats

The Republican controlled US House of Representatives did something that the Democrat controlled House never did. They voted to cut off funding to a war. They passed and amendment to the Defense Dept authorization bill that banned money being "prohibit the use of funds in contravention of the War Powers Resolution."

Nancy Pelosi voted against the amendment, and thus in favor of more war in Libya. My local faux-progressive representative, Diane DeGette, also voted in favor of more war. She talks quite nicely about her opposition to war, until the chips are down back in DC and her vote is needed to help keep a war going. She never fails to deliver up her vote for longer wars and more deaths when its really needed. Jared Polis, the other supposedly 'progressive' representative from Colorado also voted for more war.

The vote did largely split party lines. 138 Republicans voted yes, and 110 Democrats. If you want to see a list of the Democrats who will support Obama straight into the hell of a continuing war, click on the link to go see the roll call for this vote. If you want the wars to end, this is a list of the 70 Democrats that would be good to vote out of the US House. A lot of these pro-war Democrats represent anti-war districts. Pelosi representing San Francisco is just one prime example.

Of course, the Democrats still control the Senate, so its a pretty fair bet that the Defense Dept authorization bill that passes the Senate won't include this provision. That means it probably goes to conference committee to resolve the differences between the House and Senate versions. Eventually the pro-war Republican leadership, that is apparently a minority in its own caucus on Libya, will negotiate a deal with the Senate leadership on the final shape of this bill. My guess is this provision gets dropped then, and the majority in the House that voted against the war in Libya will be told to accept the bill without it.

This world keeps getting more surrealistic. Electing a Democrat house in 2006 just kept the wars going uninterrupted. But the Tea Party rise leads to a Republican House that finally takes the step that most Democratic voters have wanted for a decade .... a vote to cut off funds to a war. And it happens over the No votes of the Democratic leadership.

To me, the question really is, how long will anti-war voters and activists continue to support the pro-war Democrats?

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