Novak: There Will Be A White House-Democrat Deal On Troop Funding
In his latest edition of his Evans-Novak Political Report, columnist Robert Novak says there will be a deal on troop funding, the “surge” is not working and that the U.S. is destined to start removing troops no matter what:
# A bipartisan deal on the supplemental appropriations bill to finance the Iraq war appears to be in the books, with less talk now of a presidential veto and a subsequent crisis over funding the troops in the field. The final version probably will contain the benchmarks opposed by President George W. Bush, but with no cutoff of funding.
# The early reports from Baghdad indicate the “surge” and new strategy will not win the war. The expectation from all sides is that a troop removal will be underway in earnest by year’s end, no matter who is winning the war.
He elaborates on the surge further down in his report:
The heightened U.S. troop presence, according to the top commanders, appears to be pushing the violence out of certain areas, but it has increased in others. Meanwhile, U.S. troop deaths are skyrocketing, with very little attention being paid to this fact at home. The first quarter of 2007 saw 244 deaths, far more than the same period last year. On April 10, the Pentagon reported 35 troop deaths in the first 10 days of this month. The grand total is approaching 3,300.
Sen. John McCain’s (R-Ariz.) recent ordeal in Iraq illustrates the political problem the war is posing for Republicans. McCain suffered an embarrassing political moment when he declared Baghdad safe before his trip there, only to tour a Baghdad neighborhood days later, escorted by a large military security contingent (including two helicopters) and wearing a bulletproof vest. Part of the precaution surely stems from his status as a presidential candidate, but the message was clear: Iraq is not [this boldfaced word is Novak's] safe.
Novak also says that McCain’s trying to use the the war as a positive political issue is a sign of “desperation.”
Novak’s conclusions are likely to cause yet more erosion from the administration’s support. Increasingly, the America public — and elites — are divided between those who for one reason or other don’t support the conduct of the war and those who are involved in intensive spin control to say it’s going fine…or to give it more time. Novak’s latest column shows that time for the administration is running out.
Novak’s work can be regularly read on Humaneventsonline.com