Democrats Still Fighting Bush on the War

Senate Democrats aren't buying President Bush's claim that the war is going well and plan more votes this spring to put limits on it.


President Bush's hopeful comments in the State of the Union address about the war in Iraq are drawing fire from some Democrats who just don't buy it.

Senate Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin is one of them, and he's already pledging to conduct more antiwar votes in the Senate this spring.

"How many times have we been told that we are winning or have won the war in Iraq?" Durbin asked at a media breakfast on Tuesday. "We were told that again last night. I want to tell you that with 4,000 American dead, with almost 40,000 wounded, with no end in sight and with the Iraqi government still stumbling and bumbling their way into some sort of position where they can govern, I think it is disingenuous to continue to tell us this mission has been accomplished or is being accomplished. We are a long way from there. And we have a long way to go."

The Illinois senator rapped Bush for refusing to change his policies in Iraq. "It is clear that this president is adamant and will not change his policy regardless of what happens and we have to live with it because we don't have the votes necessary" to overturn the policy, he said. But Durbin said that the political calendar might push some Republicans up for re-election to join the efforts to limit the war, or at least put restrictions on how many times troops can be redeployed to Iraq and Afghanistan.

"I think we could have some votes on Iraq and I think we should," he said. "It is an issue. It may not be the most dominant issue today— the economy appears to be for obvious reasons— but it is an issue that concerns a lot of people."