FROM John Donnelly
Congress Votes for Iraq Spending Bill House Speaker Nancy Pelosi scored a political victory today, an Iraq spending bill setting the end of August next year as the deadline for bring the troops home. The final vote gave the bill exactly what it needed for passage: 218 ayes to 212 nos. Fourteen Democrats voted against it, one voted "present;" two Republicans went along. John Donnelly is defense and foreign policy reporter for Congressional Quarterly .
Democrats Propose Iraq Withdrawal Plans on Capitol Hill House Democrats today unveiled two plans that would put direct, binding pressure on the White House to withdraw US troops from Iraq by the end of this year or, at the latest, by August, 2008. Speaker Nancy Pelosi presented her proposal at a Capitol Hill press conference, one that comes after weeks of internal Democratic wrangling. Meantime, a caucus of progressive Democrats put forth their own amendment which would move the troops out even faster. John Donnelly covers defense and foreign policy for Congressional Quarterly .
Senate Democrats Plan to Revoke War Authorization When Congress returns on Tuesday, Democrats in both houses will be keeping up the pressure on President Bush and his plan for increasing troops in Iraq. In the Senate, there's talk of revising the authorization to use force passed in 2002. John Donnelly reports for Congressional Quarterly .
After the Non-Binding Iraq Resolution? With the Senate paralyzed this week, the Congress took up the issue of President Bush's increase of 21,500 troops in Iraq . Beginning on Tuesday, every Republican and Democrat got the chance to speak out on a two-sentence resolution declaring support for the troops but opposition to the increase or "surge." With the resolution expected to pass today, the only question is how many Republicans will go along. Since, "non-binding" means there's no requirement on President Bush, and he's already said he'll pay no attention, Democrats--and some Republicans--are under rank-and-file pressure to end the war. What do they do now? Can they cut off the money? Create a "political climate" the president can't ignore or, by that time, will the troop increase already have happened?
Senate Committee Opposes Troop Surge In last night's State of the Union address, President Bush asked Congress to support his troop increase in Iraq, but the Senate Foreign Relations Committee today passed a resolution saying it's "not in the national interest." Indiana Republican Richard Lugar said he was "not confident the plan will succeed," but he voted against the resolution. Nebraska's Chuck Hagel was the only Republican who voted yes. John Donnelly covers defense and foreign policy for Congressional Quarterly .
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?