The Democratic majority in the House is planning a “non-binding” resolution against Bush’s plan to escalate the troop levels in Iraq. From what I understand, the House could in fact restrict funding for the troops. The party line is that the “non-binding” resolution is a start and that a binding one will follow. But both New York Senators Clinton and Schumer have stated that they might not have enough votes to produce a binding one. And the realities of being able to determine how to cut funding to the troops without negatively impacting those already there would make a binding resolution impossible.
So what’s the point to the “non-binding” one? By publicly renouncing Bush’s plan, they are merely giving themselves more opportunity to chime in with a chorus of “I told you so”s. Assuming that the plan will fail (and that is a safe assumption, despite my belief that it is worth a shot), they look even better. And the Republicans that didn’t go along with the resolution look even worse for continuing the support for Iraq when it was a known failure.
Far right Presidential candidates like Brownback won’t be hurt at all since his base has entirely different reasons for supporting him. But a moderate like McCain could be hurt significantly by supporting the escalation now. Other Republicans can go after him with it in primary debates and should he become the nominee, the Democrats can hammer him about it.
From the perpsective of the Democrats forming a cohesive unit to battle against the long standing Republican majority, this is a positive sign. But from a perspective of looking foward to non-partisan politics, this is solemnly disappointing.