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Democrats Respond to Bush’s Speech

Posted on Jan 11, 2007

Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois gave the official Democratic response to Bush’s speech.

Needless to say, the Democrats hated Bush’s plan for escalating the war in Iraq, although they differed on how to defeat the action. Ted Kennedy continues to push for a direct confrontation, while the leadership wants to start off with a symbolic vote. Hillary Clinton was surprisingly feisty in her comments, calling Bush’s policy “marred by incompetence and arrogance.”

AFP via Yahoo:

WASHINGTON—Democrats wasted no time in slamming President George W. Bush’s latest strategy for Iraq, although rifts emerged among them about how best to respond to his plan to send fresh U.S. troops to the war-torn country.

Minutes after Bush in a nationally-televised speech outlined a last-ditch effort to salvage Iraq, the Senate’s number two Dick Durbin repudiated the plan, and said it was time to pull U.S. troops and let Iraq save itself.

“It is time for the Iraqis to stand and defend their own nation. The government of Iraq must now prove that it will make the hard political decisions, which will bring an end to this bloody civil war,” Durbin said.

“Tonight President Bush acknowledged what most Americans know: We are not winning in Iraq, despite the courage and immense sacrifice of our military. Indeed the situation is grave and deteriorating,” Durbin said, delivering the Democrats’ official response to the Bush speech.

“Escalation of this war is not the change the American people called for in the last election,” he said.

His was among a chorus of Democratic condemnations of the president’s plan, which the party dismissed as just the latest ineffectual effort by the White House to try to get control of the runaway violence in Iraq.

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By David Caputo, January 17, 2007 at 8:08 pm Link to this comment
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I did a very extensive breakdown of Bush’s speech, entitled: Whacking the Pinata: A Citizen’s Response to Bush’s Escalation Speech.

I post it here because I thought that readers of this article might well enjoy it.

David Caputo
Totally Fixed and Rigged Magazine

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By Polly Ester, January 14, 2007 at 9:52 pm Link to this comment
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“Please, exactly, what is impeachable that Bush has done??  And please also spare me the cockamamie conspiracy theories.  I only deal in actual facts.”

Todd—here are 10 reasons for the guy who only deals in facts:

1. Initiating a war of aggression against a nation that posed no immediate threat to the U.S.—a war that has needlessly killed over 3,000 Americans and maimed and damaged over 20,000 more, while killing between 50-100,000 innocent Iraqi men, women and children.

2. Lying and organizing a conspiracy to trick the American people and the U.S. Congress into approving an unnecessary and illegal war.

3. Approving and encouraging, in violation of U.S. and international law, the use of torture, kidnapping and rendering of prisoners of war captured in Iraq and Afghanistan and in the course of the so-called War on Terror.

4. Illegally stripping the right of citizenship and the protections of the constitution from American citizens, denying them the fundamental right to have their cases heard in a court, to hear the charges against them, to be judged in a public court by a jury of their peers, and to have access to a lawyer.

5. Authorizing the spying on American citizens and their communications by the National Security Agency and other U.S. police and intelligence agencies, in violation of the First and Fourth Amendments and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).

6. Obstructing investigation into and covering up knowledge of the deliberate exposing of the identity of a U.S. CIA undercover operative, and possibly conspiring in that initial outing itself.

7. Obstructing the investigation into the 9-11 attacks and lying to investigators from the Congress and the bi-partisan 9-11 Commission—actions that come perilously close to treason.

8. Violating the due process and other constitutional rights of thousands of citizens and legal residents by rounding them up and disappearing or deporting them without hearings.

9. Abuse of power, undermining of the constitution and violating the presidential oath of office by deliberately refusing to administer over 750 acts duly passed into law by the Congress—actions with if left unchallenged would make the Congress a vestigial body, and the president a dictator.

10. Criminal negligence in failing to provide American troops with adequate armor before sending them into a war of choice, criminal negligence in going to war against a weak, third-world nation without any planning for post war occupation and reconstruction, criminal negligence in failing to respond to a known and growing crisis in the storm-blasted city of New Orleans, and criminal negligence in failing to act, and in fact in actively obstructing efforts by other countries and American state governments, to deal with the looming crisis of global warming.

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By Todd, January 12, 2007 at 11:49 am Link to this comment
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Impeachment seems to be the big buzzword everywhere on this site (regardless of the subject matter of the actual story).  I’d like to hear someone tell me one thing that would qualify as an impeachable offense.  Lying is not one unless, of course, one is under oath (and isn’t a Democrat).  Not liking him is not.  Thinking he’s an idiot is not.  Sending troops to war in a conflict that was given approval by the Congress is not.

Please, exactly, what is impeachable that Bush has done??  And please also spare me the cockamamie conspiracy theories.  I only deal in actual facts.

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By Lefty, January 11, 2007 at 6:12 pm Link to this comment
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Re: Comment #46997 by sheila

“The only discussion should be when to start impeachment proceedings for his lies and war crimes.  What the “F” are the dems afraid of?”

Exaclty! Ted Kennedy seems to be the owner of only set of oysters in the freakin Democratic party. 

I say, lets get each one of these mealy mouthed panzies (including Pelosi) a testoterone patch so they can “scare up” a decision to impeach the lying, incompetent, interloping, jackanapes occupying the White House.

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By Todd, January 11, 2007 at 5:01 pm Link to this comment
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600,000 Iraqi dead??  Can you do basic math??  The start of the Iraq invasion was slightly less than 4 years ago, or 1,390 days ago.  600,000 killed would be equal to 431 Iraqis killed EACH and EVERY day.  If this were true, there would be bodies lying in the street all over the place.  This many people dying due to war, in addition to the actual normal death rate, would immediately overwhelm any sanitary methods of disposing of bodies.  There would be mass graves everywhere.

Additionally, 600,000 people is equivelant to 2.5% of the Iraqi population!  That would equate to 7.5M people in the US.  And you don’t think anyone would notice that???  If you include the fact that 25% of the population is Kurd and Turkoman, who have not been involved in much fighting at all (if any), then that means that 3.0% of the population has died in the less than 4 years.  That is not possible without a massive impact to the infrastructure of a country.

Stop spouting crap and learn something on your own.

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By mite, January 11, 2007 at 2:30 pm Link to this comment
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Over 300,000 military personnel and family members have become sick from upleated urainium from Iraq I and II.  No mention about this in the media-press.

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By Rodney Matthews, January 11, 2007 at 2:23 pm Link to this comment
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Hey Democrats, if you want to win the next election stop the war funding. Let’s not let another American soldier die for this egotistical lunatic who is hell bent on trying to preserve his already failed legacy. Put this immoral lame duck and his partner in crime Cheney in their rightfull place. Jail!

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By sheila, January 11, 2007 at 1:37 pm Link to this comment
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The only discussion should be when to start impeachment proceedings for his lies and war crimes.  What the “F” are the dems afraid of?

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By vet240, January 11, 2007 at 1:36 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Response to #46879 by Dowd.

Unfortunately there are and have been many despots or despotic movements in the modern world, resulting in acts of terror.

I list just a few:
Bosnia, 200,000 dead
Laos (Khmer Rouge), 1.5-2 million dead
Uganda (Idi Amin) 500,000 dead
Sudan Darfur region (Sudanese Govt. backed Arabic Muslims, 450,000 dead.
Iraq 600,000 dead since we invaded.

You apparently believe the solution to terrorism is simple. In the words of Bush, “Bringem on!”

The fact is we are not the concience or the police of the world. We cannot afford to spend $500,000 to kill one terrorist, while there are an estimated 750,000 homeless in our “great” country.

The issues confronting us and the world are much to complicated to be answered as childishly as your president (I voted against him twice and his father once) has answered.

Oh, and JFK? He learned very quickly in his brief presidency (Bay of Pigs, Cuba) that there are no simple answers, only simple people.

JFK would never have embarked on such a fools folley as the Iraq war. As crazy and despotic as Saddam Hussein was he not only had an ongoing interaction with the CIA (40 years), he maintained some semblance of control over the Islamic fundementalists in his country. Is it good he’s dead? Only if his death results in less death and more freedom (debatable) in Iraq. It now appears we, through our invasion, may surpass him in terms of numbers of dead, especially if we stay another 2-6 more years.

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By MARIAM RUSELL, January 11, 2007 at 1:07 pm Link to this comment
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Here are the most relevant findings on active duty military opinion:

* Percentage who feel that “success in Iraq is likely”: 50% (down from an “optimistic” peak of 83% in 2004)

* Percent who approve of the way President Bush is handling the war: 35% (down from 63% in 2004)

* Percent who disapprove of Bush’s handling of the war: 42%

* Percent who think the U.S. should have gone to war in Iraq in the first place: 41% (down from 65% in 2003) - four points lower than the general U.S. population (45%) in a recent USA Today/Gallup poll

* Percent who think U.S. should have NO TROOPS in Iraq: 13%

That’s right, more than 1 in 10 troops polled say there should be no U.S. forces in Mesopotamia.

Other interesting “Military Times” discoveries include the finding that less than half the active-duty military thinks War Criminal Bush has their best interests at heart.  Less than half think the war on Iraq deserves to be considered part of the so-called war on terror.  And less than a third thinks the nation’s civilian military leadership has their best interests at heart. 

These interesting findings come despite the fact that just 10 percent of the military identifies as “liberal” (the leftmost category troops are permitted to use). They also arise in spite of what Dr. Alan Segal (director of the Center for the Study of Military Organization at the university of Maryland) calls “a strong strain in military culture not to criticize the commander-in-chief” (“Down on the War,” Military Times, 29 December 2006, available at www. polls/2006_ main.php).

You cannot even fool all of the military all of the time, but the Dems seem pretty buffaloed to me.


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By Quy Tran, January 11, 2007 at 11:58 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

We do not need an answer to a big FART !

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By Janis, January 11, 2007 at 11:43 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Humpty Dumpty Bush has fallen off the wall and cracked into twenty thousand pieces.
His call for escalation can’t put Iraq or his failed presidency back together. More U.S. forces inside Iraq getting killed while doing the dirty work of killing the bad Iraqis for the good Iraqis is insane. The only road out of Iraq is the Impeachment Highway.

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By FreeDem, January 11, 2007 at 11:43 am Link to this comment
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The stupidity of the “serge” is perhaps the issue of the moment and so must be attacked lest we escalate the meat grinder, but whiles we beat off the alligators, lets not forget that we elected this clean up crew to unclog the sewer backup that caused all this mess in the first place.

Un-Gerrymandering, paper ballots, no voter suppression, need to be at the top of the list if things to do, because if they are not done quickly, they will not be able to be done at all.

After that making sure that the Bill of rights is put back in force much less the Magna Carta has to be really soon as well.

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By SamSnedegar, January 11, 2007 at 10:06 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Sorry but the extra troops Bush wants are needed not for the war, but to protect the oilfields and pipelines. Of course he can’t say that, any more than he can admit that we coveted the oil, we lied ourselves into a war so as to steal the oil, and we have murdered more than half million innocent people in the process.

Funny thing is that no one wants to talk about why we have to steal control of the oil. That is why the pusillanimous Dimocraps don’t just UNdeclare war and bring our boys and girls home. They want control of the oil too, and they want to blame the GOP for the coveting, lying, stealing, and killing that goes with it.

And don’t confuse selling and profiting from the oil with CONTROLLING it. There may be some chicanery involved in letting American oil companies make shameful profits out of the war, and more for Halliburton, but that isn’t the point at all. Controlling it is essential; it isn’t necessary ever to pump out even one barrel of it. The point is that WE control it, not some other entity. Yes, we have to be ABLE to pump it out when or if we want to do so, and that is why we need more troops.

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By DennisD, January 11, 2007 at 9:42 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The Iraq war should be the only issue before both houses of Congress until it’s resolved along with the impeachment of Bush and Cheney for this fiasco. If Pelosi getting a no smoking ban in the halls of Congress through legislation is typical of the grand first 100 hours of new leadership - the black hole in Washington D.C. just got bigger. The children she had on the podium at her coronation could do a better job.

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By chuck, January 11, 2007 at 9:31 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

After all the consultations in the world, bush just “stayed the course.” More blood in Iraq. He has his head in the sand. This is just like Viet Nam. He won’t listen to the people , the majority, who do not want an escalation, but AN END TO THIS BLOODY CONFLICT!!! King George should be impeached & the funds for the additional troops should be cut off. I like Sen. Kennedy’s legislation to cut off funding now..

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By jack gavin, January 11, 2007 at 8:34 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Sooner or later we Americans will leave Iraq. We need to ask ourselves whether leaving now, (in an orderly fashion) will be any worse for us than leaving later.
This american suspects that the longer we stay in the mid-east, with agression on our minds, the deeper we sink into a mire of sand.

Further, I am suspecting that our reckless cadre is tooling up for a fight with Iran over the issue of nuclear development. Very dangerous! As an aside, I dare say, it is unclear to me that a nuclear Iran would be any more dangerous than a nuclear Pakistan. If we keep poking the beast we just may unleash irrational behavior. Very dangerous!

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By Polly Ester, January 11, 2007 at 8:10 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

What was interesting is that Durbin appeared more presidential than Bush—the Commander-in-Chief, looked as if he was in a state of catatonic shock, reading a script that even rung untrue for him.

This administration is a disgrace—we need to DE-ESCALATE from Iraq now!

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By George S Semsel, January 11, 2007 at 6:32 am Link to this comment
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The well-anticipated yowlings of the Democrats over Bush’s forceful and active repudiation of their stance on his war are just another sign of how hopeless things are in this country. Despite their vocalizations, the Democrats have repeatedly shown that unlike the president, when it comes to action, they will do nothing. Like fools, we wasted our votes once again. Expecting change, we get more pretty speeches.

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By b. dowd, January 11, 2007 at 6:19 am Link to this comment
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