Monday, June 13, 2005

David Sirota gets it re: Iraq

For those of you who don't know, I read David Sirota's blog on a regular basis. The veteran Washington journalist has moved to Montana (where his wife now works for Governor Schweitzer), and his site, which he writes while not busy at the Center for American Progress, the American Prospect, or the Al Franken Show, is a veritable treasure trove of eloquent liberal argument. Not surprisingly, Sirota is also one of the leading Schweitzer boosters around the blogosphere. Needless to say, I keep an eye on the guy.

So when I received this article in my e-mail from the Sirota list, I read it carefully. And it's quite the read. Some excerpts:

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the most important vote on the Iraq War that Americans hadn't heard about (thanks to the media, the GOP and certain factions of the Democratic Party). It was a vote in the House on a simple non-binding resolution that would ask the President to submit at least some details of an eventual exit strategy from Iraq. The resolution, supported by a gutsy group of Democrats and a few Republicans, tried to honor the War Powers Act of 1973 (specifically, section 4b). Unfortunately, it was voted down by both Republicans and Democrats.

Now, though, with a new poll showing almost 60 percent of Americans favor a withdrawal, more Democrats are springing into action. Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI), for instance, courageously announced that he will be introducing a Senate resolution that is almost the exact same resolution that was voted down in the House. Meanwhile, House Democrats - ALL of them - will have another shot at actually standing up for something now that Republican Rep. Walter Jones (NC) has said he will be re-introducing a similar resolution.

Clearly, the GOP may try to make it seem as if any new initiatives on Iraq mean Democrats are just responsing to polls. But, whatever - I'll take it. Hell, I'll take anything if it means more Democrats will stand up and give voice to the majority of Americans who want to see our Iraq policy seriously altered.
I'm not sure whether this bill has been covered on dKos before (if so, I apologize for the redundancy, though I still want to post Sirota's fresh take on the issue). But the big deal here is this: Sirota is phrasing the issue of an Iraq exit strategy as that of Democrats standing up for the law.

Talk about your ace-in-the-whole framing job. Sirota's managed to connect Kerry's military-man demand to "get our boys home" with Feingold's liberal demand for an exit strategy and Dean's populist "stand up for America" rhetoric. And oh yes, Schweitzer's recent demand for the return of the Montana National Guard from Iraq during fire season. Schweitzer himself does a good job connecting the dots between all the constituencies of the Democratic Party -- but it's a good thing he's got an advisor like Sirota watching his back.


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