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Kerry: Bush Will Relent on Iraq by September

by Pamela Leavey

In the wake of Harry Reid’s announcement that he planned to force an around the clock debate on Iraq, Casey Ross posted on The Boston Herald Politics Blog on Monday night that “U.S. Sen. John F. Kerry on Monday predicted that U.S. troops will be pulled from Iraq by the early fall, saying President Bush is slowly wilting under pressure from Congress.”

I believe that by September the president will announce that troops will be able to come back, and they’ll do it under one guise or another,” Kerry said during a rare visit to the State House on Monday.

The senator was on Beacon Hill to tout government investments in renewable energy and small business, but he took time to address the intensifying battle over Iraq war policy.

He said senate Democrats do not have the 60 votes needed to force a withdrawal, but he believes Bush cannot hold out against opposition much longer. “My hope is the president is going to change his policy because he’s going to see that this thing’s moving against him.”

Kerry, of course has been a leader in the Senate fight to bring the troops home for the past couple of years. Last Thursday Kerry delivered a powerful speech on the Senate floor in the Iraq War, telling fellow members of the Senate, ” If you know this policy is broken now, don’t wait until September – fix it now.”

Meanwhile, the Bush Administration is still forcing the issue and General Pace said on Monday that “troop buildup” was possible. Sounds like more smoke and mirrors from the Bush administration for their failing mission in Iraq. As Dan Froomkin pointed out, Bush “has a tendency to celebrate his generals when they’re providing him political cover — then stick a knife in their backs when they’re no longer of any use to him.”

I won’t be at all surprised if Kerry is right on this one, as he has been so many times in the past.

6 Responses to “Kerry: Bush Will Relent on Iraq by September”

  1. The good Senator is clearly better at counting votes than I am, but it seems likely that the only pressure that Goombah will bow to is that applied by his own party. I believe that he can be counted on to do nothing until he clearly faces a veto proof majority, so maybe JK is indicating that we are creeping ever closer.

    One can always hope.

  2. I hope JK is right and we have the votes needed. Then I hope we have enough votes to start and impeachment on the King and his court

  3. My problem with Dems is the 60 votes were never a problem when Repubs were the majority because Dems always caved.

  4. I hear what you’re saying battlebob. My one thought behind that was when the GOP held a 55 – 45 margin, they always threatened the ‘nuclear option’ against the Dems; then the Dems caved.
    Of course now the Dems hold a 1 seat majority, and helping to hold that majority is Joe (party of one) Liebermann. Also, with Tim Johnson out convalescing, the voting gets even more narrow.
    I think the Dems need to get through one more election cycle to grab more seats in the House and especially in the Senate. (Then if they want to threaten the nuclear option against the GOP, go ahead.)

    As for what JK said, I hope he’s right. But I wouldn’t put it past shrub to pump more troops into Iraq after September. If that happens, look for GOP members of Congress jump like rats from a ship. (Shrub will be accused of looking after his legacy, and not his party – which will be true)

  5. I read Rich Lowry today. Bush had a special session for conservative columnists the other day. What Lowry describes is depressing. It sounds very realistic that nothing is going to change current direction of the Ship of State short of running aground. In this context that means that only starting impeachment will change anything, including the probable plan for an Iran attack.

  6. Darrell,

    You’re a tough guy. Writers like Lowery make my eyes hurt. But what what you read is what I’m kind of thinking. Shrub will pull the GOP down with him. The GOP has not yet figured out that their goals and his goals are 2 different things.

    I suspect you’ll find fewer elephants in Congress next year.