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September 2007

September 28, 2007

Richardson: Are They Kidding?!?!

Governor Bill Richardson is making it clear how he differs from the Democratic presidential frontrunners on the war in Iraq.  In an email to supporters on Thursday, Richardson outlined his opponents’ responses to bringing all troops home by 2013.

“Hillary Clinton said no. Barack Obama said no. And John Edwards said no. Then, all three refused to pledge to remove all of our troops and end the war.”

Richardson has been adamant that he will not leave any troops in Iraq and wants to avoid what he calls “another 5 years of American soldiers dying” if troops remain in Iraq through the next presidential term.

“I am the only major candidate in this race who is committed to getting every soldier out of Iraq STARTING IMMEDIATELY, and getting them all out safely and quickly within a year. No ifs, ands, or buts.”

Debate transcript available at The New York Times

Edwards: Full Withdrawal Not a Commitment

During last night’s Democratic Presidential debate, Dmocratic hopeful John Edwards made clear his stance on residual troops in Iraq.  When asked if he would commit to a full withdrawal of all U.S. troops from Iraq by 2013, the end of his first term, Senator Edwards bluntly replied:

“I cannot make that commitment”

Edwards did say he would immediately begin withdrawing troops, but stressed the importance of leaving troops for the protection of the U.S. Embassy and humanitarian workers.

Debate transcript available at The New York Times

Biden: Torture Does Not Work

Asked a hypothetical question regarding using torture to protect America in last night’s Democratic Presidential debate, Senator Biden vowed never to use torture, warning that it can lead to misinformation.

“It [torture] does not work. It is part of the reason why we got the faulty information on Iraq in the first place is because it was engaged in by one person who gave whatever answers they thought they were going to give in order to stop being tortured.”

Breaking ranks with other Democrats, Biden gave an explicit hard line approach towards torture:

“It should be no part of our policy ever – ever.”

Debate transcript available at The New York Times

Obama: America Cannot Sanction Torture

Obama made clear in last night’s Democratic Presidential Debate his stance on torture:

“America cannot sanction torture. It’s a very straightforward principle, and one that we should abide by.”

Obama continued by explaining the importance of abstaining from torture as a part of America’s world image.

“What we cannot do is have a President of the United States state, as a matter of policy, that there is a loophole or an exception where we would sanction torture.  I think that diminishes us and it sends the wrong message to the world.” 

Debate transcript available at The New York Times

Obama: Anything to Stop a Nuclear Iran

In last night’s presidential debate, Senator Obama made it clear that he will do anything to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons.

“I make an absolute commitment that we will do everything we need to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons.”

However, Senator Obama has continued to make diplomacy a vital first step in how he would engage Iran, a strategy that he feels has been underutilized in the United States’ foreign policy.

“One of the things we have to try, though, is to talk directly to Iran, something that we have not been doing.”

Obama stressed the importance of talking to all nations:

“We’ve got to talk to our enemies and not just our friends."

Debate transcript available at The New York Times

September 26, 2007

Clinton: No Wallet Without Withdrawal

Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton has vowed not to vote for funding for the Iraq war without a withdrawal plan.

"I don't believe we should continue to vote for funding that has an open-ended commitment, that has no pressure on the Iraqi government to make the tough political decisions they have to make, or which really gives any urgency to the Bush administration's diplomatic efforts."

Suggesting that President Bush intends to leave troop removal for the next president, Senator Clinton vowed to end the war "as quickly and responsibly as I can." However, Clinton also said that troops will remain in Iraq after the conflict is ended. She has yet to specify how large the residual force will be, but said on CBS on Sunday that the number will be less than 100,000 troops. 160,000 troops are currently in Iraq, up from 130,000 earlier this year.

Full Story on CNN

September 25, 2007

Top three Democrats promise to vote against war funding unless troop withdrawl is attached

In a new campaign Ad, John Edwards has called on Congress to use their power over government spending to end the war:

Barack Obama has also taken a "No Timeline, No Money," stance on war funding as Congress braces for a historic debate over Bush's request for up to 190 Billion in war funding for the Iraq and Afghanistan wars for the 2008 fiscal year.

We are going to bring an end to this war and I will fight now in the United
States Senate to make sure that we don't pass any funding bill that
does not have a deadline to start bringing our troops out.


Update: CNN reported that Hillary Clinton said on Sunday that she would not vote for a war spending bill that did not include a plan to start bringing the troops home. She called on Congress to support the troops by bringing them home, but also refused to speculate on when ALL of the troops could come home, saying that any funding plan should be "open-ended."

Action Alert: Put some pressure on Congress yourself! Join with us and pledge We will NOT vote for, contribute to, or volunteer for anyone who:

  • Votes against a concrete timeline for withdrawal of US troops from Iraq
  • Votes to fund the war in Iraq without requiring that the funding be used for withdrawal of US troops, reconstruction, and regional diplomacy
  • Supports permanent US military bases in Iraq and a long-term occupation


Sign the Iraq pledge here.

September 18, 2007

Hillary Clinton Bird-Dogged in New Hampshire

From NH Peace Action's blog:

On August 23, 2007, Hillary Clinton visited Main Street Bookends in Warner, New Hampshire.

Questioner #1 on hand-shaking line: Please take the nuclear option off the table with Iran, Pakistan, and North Korea.
Clinton: “yes, yes, yes” as her attention was shifting away.
Questioner #2 on hand-shaking line: When will be my nephew be coming home from Iraq?
Clinton: “When we can get him.”

September 13, 2007

McCain's New "No Surrender" Campaign

Republican Presidential candidate John McCain has introduced a new campaign slogan this week: "No Surrender."  Continuing his hardliner stance, McCain warned that troop removal would disastrous.

“If we leave, there will be chaos and genocide in the region, and we will be back,”

Senator McCain makes it clear that his presidency will ensure the continuation of the Iraq war.

Richardson: Obama's Plan "Does Not End War"

Issuing a rebuttal to Senator Obama's calls the end the Iraq war, Presidential hopeful Bill Richardson challenged Obama's plan as "inadequate"

"Senator Obama promised that he would lay out a different course in Iraq. I am disappointed that he has decided to offer more of the same."

Richardson also criticized Obama for side-stepping the issue of residual troops.

"He [Obama}] laid out a timetable for removing all of the combat troops from Iraq, but he did not tell us what he would do with the tens of thousands of non-combat troops who also are stuck in the middle of a civil war."

Reiterating his stance to bring all troops home, Richardson said:

"The American people know where I stand. There is only one responsible course of action left for us in this war. We need to get all of our troops out of Iraq with no residual forces left behind. We need to withdraw both the combat troops and the tens of thousands of other troops who are there. We need to do it now."

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