Skip to comments.Reid: Bush must learn to compromise on Iraq
Posted on 04/05/2007 5:42:33 PM PDT by mdittmar
RENO, Nev. (AP) - President Bush would be to blame, not the Democrat-controlled Congress, if he vetoes a supplemental spending bill for U.S. troops because he has rejected repeated invitations to discuss a compromise, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Thursday.
"I'm a legislator, I know how to compromise. He doesn't. That's what he's got to learn," Reid, D-Nev., told The Associated Press.
"Compromise is not a bad word. I think it's been real hard for him to understand he can't do what he did before we had a new Congress in town," Reid said. "He's going to have to learn to deal with it."
Reid made the remarks after he met with a mixed reception at a veterans hospital where he took his plea for troop withdrawals by next fall and called the war in Iraq the "worst foreign policy blunder" in U.S. history.
"The training wheels have to come off and Iraq has got to police it's own civil war. We should not be policing a civil war," Reid told about 80 veterans, doctors and others at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Reno.
"People say if we leave Iraq it's going to be chaos," he said. "It's chaos right now. So whenever we leave, whether it is six days from now or six months from now - we know we'll be out of there in 20 months because that is when Bush is out of office - it is going to be chaos."
Two of the half-dozen or more skeptics in the audience offered pointed criticism of Reid, including one who said the senator's "irresponsible statements" are undermining U.S. troops.
"You are using this as a political football. It's not acceptable," said John Edwards, a veteran and member of a local chapter of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, whose national organization has called for Congress to approve funding for the Iraq war without what it called "an arbitrary withdrawal timeline."
Reid said he agrees the nation must make sure U.S. troops have "not died in vain in Iraq."
"Conversely, we have to tell it how it is. We can't paint a picture that doesn't exist," he said.
"Before we invaded, there was not a single terrorist in Iraq. I recognize Saddam Hussein was an evil man and I'm glad he's gone. But invading Iraq did not help the situation. It made it worse."
Reid said earlier he will propose legislation to cut off funds for combat operations, and provide money for only three missions: targeted counterterrorism operations, training and equipping the Iraqi security forces, and to provide security for U.S. personnel and infrastructure.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates criticized the strategy Wednesday, saying such limits could pull troops from Baghdad neighborhoods, which have been the focus of the latest military buildup in Iraq.
"One real possibility is, if we abandon some of these areas and withdraw into the countryside or whatever to do these targeted missions, that you could have a fairly significant ethnic cleansing inside Baghdad or in Iraq more broadly," Gates said.
Sen. John Ensign, R-Nev., is among those who argue Congress has no business "micromanaging this war."
"Our troops are in Iraq fighting an enemy that wants to destroy our way of life, and setting a date for withdrawal would undermine our commanders," he said last week. "Victory is our only option."
Reid spoke and answered questions for about an hour and toured the VA facility.
"I say let's get out of there. Let's understand this war can only be won politically, diplomatically and economically."
Reid said Democrats continue to try to work with the president to avoid a second veto he has promised if another version of a supplemental spending bill has a timetable for withdrawing troops.
"If he does that, he's cutting off the funds to troops. We're not cutting off the funds to troops," Reid said.
"The president is a partner with us on what we do in Iraq whether he wants to be or not. We need to work with him and he needs to work with us."
(Your tagline..........shrimp and grits together or separately?)
Cowardice in the face of the enemy."
The liberal bastids don't have enough backbone to be cowards. Their main goal is money. They are pissed off because so much money is going to things other than social programs that they can use to buy votes. They want power. That's the bottom line.
Compromise to the Dems means one of two things...if it’s the Republicans they’re saying this to...it means “you just shut the hell up and do it OUR way”...if it’s to the Islamoterrorists...it means BOHICA.
Thank you so very much to the voters of the 2006 election. Because of your collective wisdom, people like this walking bag of bile are controlling the future of the United States. May God forgive you, and have mercy on us all.
You are very correct.
I just watched Alan Colmes just get all gooey about how nice the Iranians were for letting the Brits go....blech
Actually, I discovered the most fantastic combination of foods when I moved down to NC. Shrimp and grits. I was told, I am the only guy ever who wears a Boston Redsox hat that loves grits.
Shrimp and grits is a little different everywhere you get it but it usually has a smokey sausage, cheese and a taso ham sauce mixed in. Its fantastic but it fills you up like you wouldn’t believe. If you ever get a chance to try it, DO NOT PASS IT UP!
I hope Ann Coulter smacks the back of his pointy Liberal head for that when she’s on.
The arrogance of the Congressional Democrats is breath taking. Would they have said the same thing to FDR, Truman, JFK, LBJ, Jimmuh Cahteh, or Bubba BJ???
This is arrogant, disgraceful, disgusting behavior at its core!!!!
You are exactly right about their hatred for President Bush but it isn't their destruction I am worried about. It's our country and our military,our freedoms that are at stake here.
If these, traitors win in 2008 our military power will be greatly weakened as it was under clinton in the 90's.I doubt our young men and women would want to serve under such nonsupporting leaders.
Now Reid has the luxury of changing his mind while the President does not.
This should be a lesson to all future Presidents. If war is necessary, get a declaration of war from congress. Otherwise, you just might find yourself dealing with backstabbing low lifes like Reid and others when things don't suit them.
Sen. Reid is despicable and a liar. The “no terrorists in Iraq before our attacks” canard has been disproved many times over. And President Bush needs no lessons in compromise from him. You don’t compromise on war. You don’t compromise on support for our troops. You don’t compromise with terrorists.
Sen. Reid is the one who needs an attitude adjustment. He is barely in the majority (c’mon Joe ... switch parties please!) in the Senate. And neither the House nor the Senate has the constitutional role of “Commander in Chief”.
It’s pretty easy: send President Bush a funding bill with no pork, no strings, and no timetables. It will get signed. Failure to do so is playing politics with our military; with Iraqis; and with our country’s global reputation as the pre-eminent defender of freedom and liberty. The choice is yours, Sen. Reid, not President Bush’s.
Wow. Nevada will elect anybody.
Do you see how they are??
Ann told Alan and Laura WHY they can’t say that Pelosi was “carrying the President’s message”...since the President’s message was DON’T GO TO SYRIA!!
They don’t listen...but boy do they like to talk.
I agree completely. In fact, it is his sworn duty to protect us "against all enemies, foreign and domestic". This bunch of traitorous bastards have gone way over too far in time of war. Arrest them, shoot them, do something for all our sakes.
Gee Harry .. now all you have to do is learn to tell the friggin truth for once
I am beginning to think that Democratic Party 101...is NEVER, EVER tell the truth.
GOOD FOR ANN!!!
Finally, finally she actually told Americans that the Dems on the show are LYING TWICE!!!
SU Dingy...YOU are irrelevant!
Do you suppose I could find it there? I LOVE grits.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.