Monday, April 23, 2007

Language on the Supplemental Resolved

Negotiators from the House of Representatives and the Senate have finished hammering out a compromise agreement on the Supplemental War Spending Bill.

The legislation establishes benchmarks for the government of Iraq, and includes measurable progress in the development of Iraqi security forces. It would also give U.S. soldiers and Marines more authority to pursue extremists and wuld establish a program to disarm militias and pursue political reconciliation between the sects and protect minority rights.

If the benchmarks are not being met, troop withdrawals would start on 01 July of this year, with a goal of completing the draw-down in 180 days. If benchmarks are beign met, then withdrawal would start on 01 October, also with a goal of completing the draw-down in 180 days.

The current language must be ratified by both chambers of the congress and then it will go to the president for either a signature or a veto.

The president has promised a veto as he is allergic to any form of accountability.

Bush "is the only person who fails to face this war's reality -- and that failure is devastating not just for Iraq's future, but for ours," Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) declared in a speech this afternoon.

Bush has repeatedly vowed he will not sign any bill with benchmarks or timetables, and he repeated himself today on that assertion in brief comments to reporters followign a meeting with General Petraeus. "I will strongly reject an artificial timetable [for] withdrawal and/or Washington politicians trying to tell those who wear the uniform how to do their job," Bush said.

Here is hoping the Democrats retain this newfound backbone and make him accept accountability. It's high time. He's sixty years old, and most of us start to develop a modicum of it by age six.

[Cross-posted from Watching Those We Chose]

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