The Blog

Biden, Iraq & "Symbolic Votes"

4:14 PM, Jan 10, 2007 • By DANIEL MCKIVERGAN
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In 1999, Democrats, liberal pundits and some Republicans slammed Tom Delay's comment that Kosovo was "Clinton's War." They were right to do so. At the same time, Sen. Joe Biden co-sponsored a resolution authorizing the commander in chief to use "all necessary force and other means necessary" to achieve victory in Kosovo.

Eight years later, the Delaware senator is hardly showing the courage of his convictions. He's now leading the charge for "symbolic votes" against the expected troop surge. Biden http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/10/washington/10capitol.html target=_blank>explained his position this way in today's New York Times:

"If you really want to change the situation on the ground, demonstrate to the president he's on his own," said Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr., chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee. "That will spark real change."

But why have only symbolic votes? How come Democratic leaders aren't pushing for real votes on troop funding and Boland-type restrictions to "spark real change"? Are they only out to embarrass the president and score points with the base of their party?

At least anti-war Senators Feingold and Kennedy have the courage of their convictions to call for binding votes rather than the transparently political charade Pelosi, Reid and Biden are about to engage in.