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February 29th, 2008
07:42 PM ET

Who are you calling liberal?

The RNC likes to call Barack Obama the most liberal (or among the most liberal) member of the US Senate. This could provide more fodder.

Sen. Obama declined an opportunity to co-sponor Sen. Russ Feingold’s latest bill – now before the Senate – to get troops out of Iraq.  Senator Clinton is a co-sponsor.

But an Obama aide explains the Illinois Senator isn’t co-sponsoring because the bill does not include a withdrawal date.  It mandates troops must start drawing down within 120 days –  but doesn’t include a timeline.  That’s consistent with Obama’s stated position, and the bill isn’t going to pass.

But here’s the catch: Moveon.org supports this bill. They’ve been phone banking and e-mailing their members telling them to urge their senator to vote for it.  So Obama is to the left of Moveon.org on this issue.

That might not be a problem for Obama in the primary. Could it become an issue in the general election?

Here are some details: Obama is co-sponsoring a different Feingold bill that requires the administration to report to Congress on the status of the effort to fight al Qaeda, and to develop a strategy to limit deployments.

Obama is NOT co-sponsoring Iraq redeployment bill – S. 2633:

* Requires the safe redeployment of U.S. combat troops from Iraq.

* Requires that after 120 days, funding in Iraq be limited to the following: conducting targeted military operations against al Qaeda and its affiliates, providing security for U.S. personnel and infrastructure, training Iraqi Security Forces, providing equipment and training to U.S. troops, and continuing to redeploy U.S. troops from Iraq.

Obama IS co-sponsoring Al Qaeda Strategy Bill – S. 2634:

*  Requires the administration to present a report to Congress within 60 days of enactment outlining its global strategy for defeating al Qaeda and its affiliates. The report shall include an analysis of the relative threats in particular countries and regions and recommendations to ensure that U.S. military, intelligence and diplomatic assets are best deployed to meet those geographic threats.

* Requires the administration to develop a strategy ensuring that deployments do not undermine military readiness or homeland security, and that reserve units are not deployed more than once every four years and regular units are not redeployed more than once every two years.

– Jessica Yellin, CNN Correspondent


Filed under: Barack Obama • Democrats • Jessica Yellin • Raw Politics • Top Stories
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