Sunday, May 27, 2007

Antiwar Left Unloads on Democrats

I love the smell of internecine warfare in the morning. Usually when Republicans squabble, the drive-by media reports on deep divisions within the party, as if they really care what goes on in the GOP. Now, with Democrats caving on the Iraq funding measure, the far-left fringe is freaking out.
The bitter battle between the Democratic Congress and President Bush over Iraq war funding may be over for now, but another fight has erupted between Democrats and members of the antiwar base who say they were betrayed by their party.

Democratic leaders told their rank-and-file supporters Friday they had no choice but to give up efforts to tie a troop-withdrawal deadline to an emergency appropriations bill. Mr. Bush on Friday signed the bill that pays for U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan until the end of the fiscal year, Sept. 30.

Many antiwar activists and bloggers condemned the Democrats' retreat and said their patience with party leadership was wearing thin.

"Today America watched a Democratic Party kick them square in the teeth -- all in order to continue the most unpopular war in a generation," Democratic campaign strategist David Sirota wrote Friday on the left-wing Huffington Post Web site. "We gave them our heart; they gave President Bush a blank check.

"That will make May 24, 2007, a dark day ... when Democrats in Washington not only continued the war they promised to end, but happily went on record declaring that they believe in their hearts that government's role is to ignore the will of the American people," Mr. Sirota wrote.

The Daily Kos, one of the largest antiwar Web sites, also expressed disappointment and anger that leaders such as Democratic Sen. James H. Webb Jr. of Virginia voted to approve funding for the war. But it took some solace in Mr. Webb's statement that he "will not relent from my continuing efforts to bring this occupation to an end."

"They let us down this time. But the opportunities for them to make amends still exist," Markos Moulitsas Zuniga, founder of the Daily Kos, wrote the day after the vote. "If Democrats take advantage of them, as they promise they will, then all might be forgiven. They can prove to us that they in fact know what they are doing, and that they, in fact, do plan on honoring their most sacred promise to the 2006 electorate.

"And if they don't? Well, no one, not even the most rabid partisans, have an endless supply of patience," Mr. Zuniga warned.
Tough talk from the little man.

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