Friday, May 27, 2005

Lynn Woolsey Amendment

Kevin Zeese reports othe the Lynn Woolsey (D-CA) Amendment, which simply states:

"It is the sense of Congress that the president should—
(1) develop a plan as soon as practicable after the date of the enactment of this Act to provide for the withdrawal of United States Armed Forces from Iraq; and
(2) transmit to the congressional defense committees a report that contains the plan described in paragraph (1)."

That is, the amendment asks that the President start to discuss a time table for withdrawing from Iraq.

Keven explains that:

[T]he amendment failed—by a vote of 300 to 128 with 5 not voting. Because Rep. Woolsey insisted on a roll call vote we now know who needs to be convinced. There were some disappointing votes including the Democratic leader, Nancy Pelosi, as well as members generally seen as liberals, including Rep. Cardin (D-MD), Rep. Stenny Hoyer (D-MD), Rep. Sanchez (D-CA) and Rep. Udall (D-CO). Five Republicans voted for the amendment, most notably Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC) who is well known for insisting that the french fries sold in the Capitol be re-named "Freedom Fries."


Perhaps the most important speech in favor of an exit strategy came from Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC). [...]

" . . . all this amendment does is just say that it is time for the Congress to meet its responsibility. The responsibility of Congress is to make decisions whether we should send our men and women to war or not send them to war. What we are saying here tonight is we think it is time for the Congress to begin, to start the debate and discussion of what the exit strategy is of this government . ."

While 300 to 128 is certainly lopsided, a switch of 90 votes would be enough to pass the measure. As elections come closer I think many of these Reps will start to vote as their constituents want them to. For example, I am sure if you polled Pelosi's district they would have wanted her to vote yes.

Here is a roll call. See how you Rep voted and give them a call if you don't approve.