The Five Myths of Harry: Debunked in one handy guide.
Update 930pm Eastern: FNC reporting that House has passed the Iraq surrender deadline bill.
A sharply divided House brushed aside a veto threat Wednesday and passed legislation that would order President Bush to begin withdrawing troops from Iraq by Oct. 1.
The 218-208 vote came as the top U.S. commander in Iraq told lawmakers the country remained gripped by violence but was showing some signs of improvement.
Passage puts the bill on track to clear Congress by week’s end and arrive on the president’s desk in coming days as the first binding congressional challenge to Bush’s handling of the conflict now in its fifth year.
Update 946pm Eastern: Statement from the White House…
Statement By Deputy Press Secretary Dana Perino
April 25, 2007
“Seventy-nine days after President Bush sent Congress a request for emergency war funding for our troops, the House of Representatives has passed disappointing legislation that insists on a surrender date, handcuffs our generals, and contains billions of dollars in spending unrelated to the war.
“Last November, the American people voted for a change in strategy in Iraq – and the President listened. Tonight, the House of Representatives voted for failure in Iraq – and the President will veto its bill.
“Democrats have forced this process to continue for too long. The President calls on the Senate to quickly pass this legislation so the President can veto it and then work with the Congressional leadership on a clean bill that funds our troops while respecting the judgment of our military commanders and helping ensure the safety of the American people.”
Hill statements arriving in my e-mail box…
U.S. Congressman Mike Pence issued the following statement today opposing the Democrat Iraq War Supplemental Spending Bill:
“The Democrat emergency supplemental appropriations bill is fiscally irresponsible and constitutionally flawed and I cannot support it.
“What the Democrat Congress has produced is a bill that violates the budget resolution that passed the House and puts forth a prescription for retreat and defeat in Iraq by tying war spending to congressionally mandated benchmarks and deadlines for withdrawal from Iraq.
“While I am opposed to this bill based on its fiscal irresponsibility, the real problem with this bill is that it contains the Democrats’ blatantly unconstitutional attempt to manage-and lose-the Iraq War.
“Common sense and the Constitution teach us that Congress can declare war; Congress can fund or choose not to fund war, but Congress must never attempt to conduct war.
“And despite what my friends on the other side of the aisle say, this war is not lost.
“In fact, because of the President’s surge, despite the recent wave of insurgent bombings, US and Iraqi forces are making modest progress in Iraq. Now is not the time to abandon the cause of freedom in Iraq. Now is the time to give our soldiers the time, resources and freedom to succeed.”
U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra, R-Mich., the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, today voted against the emergency supplemental bill citing its defeatist, artificial timelines and pork-barrel spending. He issued the following statement after the vote:
“Providing full funding for our troops in combat should be simple and straightforward. Any bill passed by Congress should not hinder their ability to successfully complete their mission, nor should it provide any signal to our enemies that our nation’s resolve is weakening.
“Unfortunately, the House-Senate Democratic compromise on the emergency troop supplemental does just that. It compromises our men and women on the frontlines and it compromises their mission.
“The dedicated professionals in the U.S. military and Intelligence Community who every day put their lives on the line to fight the global threat posed by radical jihadists deserve to know that America’s political leaders stand with them. The bill Congress is sending to the president shows the opposite.
“Our nation faces a serious and ongoing threat from radical, militant jihadists. I fear that some believe that by pushing a date certain for withdrawal from Iraq we will somehow make the radical jihadist threat just go away.
“As the radical Islamists themselves have made clear, it will not, and we need to remain engaged to counter this threat.”
House Republican Whip Roy Blunt (Mo.) issued the following statement this evening after House Democrats sent to their colleagues in the Senate a final conference report designed to push through pork-barrel spending and tie the hands of our commanders on the ground.
“It’s my hope that tonight’s vote will mark the end of the Democrats’ protracted campaign to undercut our mission by undermining the authority of our commanders in the field. It’s now incumbent upon Senate Democrats to send this conference report to the president as soon as possible – so that a veto can be issued, and we can finally get back to work on passing a clean and responsible package of funds for our troops.
“What was true two months ago regarding our position remains even more so today: House Republicans will vigorously oppose any further attempts by Democratic leaders to unilaterally declare defeat from Capitol Hill – whether these declarations come in the form of artificial surrender dates, the imposition of unreasonable bureaucratic requirements on our generals in the field, or a cynical attempt to bankroll non-emergency spending on the backs of our troops.
“In truth, nothing short of a clean, straightforward funding package will be accepted by our conference – precisely because nothing short of that should be acceptable for our troops. I hope that Democrats over the next several days will work with Republicans to craft such a bill, so that we may have a chance to consider it, pass it, and send those resources along to the frontlines as quickly as we can.”
Meanwhile, here’s a reality-check report from Iraq filed by RedState blogger/embed Jeff Emmanuel.
Audio: Sen. James Inhofe on Harry Reid…
Asked if the Nevada Democrat should resign from his leadership position because of his comments, Inhofe said: “I think it’s more serious than that. I think there should be a recall . . . for saying something as un-American as that.”
“In my opinion Sen. Reid, having made that statement, which can only have a demoralizing effect on our troops and an effect of encouragement of the adversary, I think it would be appropriate for Sen. Reid to resign his position as the leader of the United States Senate,” he said.