The Washington Times reported this morning that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid would again include a timetable for American troop withdrawal in the bill they plan to send President Bush just before Memorial Day:
“Whether [the president] vetoes the bill or not is up to him,” said Mr. Reid, Nevada Democrat. “We have a responsibility to the American people, and we’re going to live up to that every minute of the next week.”
Mr. Bush vetoed the $124 billion bill Congress sent him last month because it included a pullout timetable, and he has made it clear he will veto any measure that restricts funds or dictates military strategy.
“Whether waivable or not, timelines send exactly the wrong signal to our adversaries, to our allies and, most importantly, to the troops in the field,” Mr. Bolten said. “The president is the one who has the authority to act as commander in chief. He needs to be the one making those decisions.”
The Republican National Committee released internal poll … showed the majority of voters siding with Mr. Bush in the funding standoff … About 60 percent say war funds should not come with a pullout timetable, and 32 percent say Congress should withhold funds until the president agrees to a withdrawal schedule, according to the poll. It also showed that 56 percent of voters say that setting a withdrawal date lets the enemy know when they can win.