GOP plan: End war in Bush’s last days

first_imgThe Democrats on Friday deemed the legislation a nonstarter and underscored the difficulty Congress has in striking a bipartisan compromise on the war. What attracts Democrats has repelled Republicans and vice versa, making it impossible so far to find a middle ground. “I don’t support it at all,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. “It doesn’t do anything.” The proposal, by Sen. George Voinovich, R-Ohio, would require that Bush change the mission of U.S. troops from combat to primarily support roles, such as training Iraqi security forces and protecting U.S. infrastructure in Iraq. His legislation would set a goal of completing such a mission transition within 15 months. If enacted immediately, that timeline would not kick in until Bush’s last couple of weeks in office. “That’s very courageous,” Reid quipped when a reporter asked him Friday about the proposal. Co-sponsors of the bill include Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Elizabeth Dole of North Carolina and Norm Coleman of Minnesota. Of the sponsors, only Voinovich is not up for re-election in 2008. In response to Reid’s rejection, a Voinovich spokesman said the senator “will continue to work for a bipartisan, nonpolitical compromise so our nation finally speaks with one voice.” Likewise, Alexander said the country is ready for a consensus on the war. “It is inexcusable for the Senate to keep lecturing Baghdad about being in a political stalemate when we continue to be stuck in our own political stalemate on Iraq,” he said in an e-mailed statement Friday.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! IRAQ: Republican senators think proposal could unite party, but Democrats aren’t biting. By Anne Flaherty THE ASSOCIATED PRESS WASHINGTON – A small group of Republicans facing election fights next year have rallied around war legislation they think could unite the GOP: Call for an end to U.S. combat in Iraq, but wait until President Bush is almost out of office. last_img

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