Democratic congressional leaders on Tuesday sent Iraq legislation setting timetables for U.S. troop withdrawals to President Bush and a certain veto.
On the fourth anniversary of the president’s “Mission Accomplished” speech, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said that Bush “has put our troops in the middle of a civil war. A change of course is needed.”
Iraqi authorities are investigating reports that the alleged leader of Al-Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Ayyub al-Masri, has been killed in a struggle within his own group, the interior ministry said Tuesday.
“There is intelligence information. Some information, you know, needs confirmation, but this information is very strong,” interior ministry operations director Brigadier General Abdel Karim Khalaf said.
“The clashes took place among themselves. There were clashes within the groups of Al-Qaeda. He was liquidated by them. Our forces had nothing to do with it,” he added, in an interview on state television.
President Bush and congressional Democrats don’t agree about much when it comes to the Iraq war, but one of the areas where they disagree the least is the need to measure the Baghdad government’s progress.
That makes the issue ripe for negotiation in an evolving veto struggle over the war, even though the administration and its critics are fiercely at odds when it comes to how â€” and whether â€” to enforce these so-called benchmarks for self-defense and democracy in Iraq’s post-Saddam Hussein era.
For the first time in history, a woman has the visibility, the reputation and the cash to make a serious run at the presidency.
It would seem that Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, the Democratic front-runner, would be in a solid position to parlay the female vote into success against an all-male field in 2008.
Attorney General Alberto Gonzales gave two top aides authority to hire and fire political appointees other than U.S. attorneys, according to a Justice Department order obtained Monday by The Associated Press.
The March 2006 order gave Gonzales’ then-Chief of Staff Kyle Sampson and later White House liaison Monica Goodling authority to hire and fire about 135 politically appointed Justice Department employees who did not require Senate confirmation.
Any pretense of civility vanished long ago in the bitter debate over funding of President George W. Bush’s failed Iraq war.
With both sides of the issue firmly entrenched, Capitol Hill insiders see little chance for compromise and progress as the funding bill faces a certain veto from Bush today because it sets a timetable for withdrawal of troops.