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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Wrong target

The netroots are inflamed with rage at House Democrats, labeling as "cowardice" the passage of an Iraq war funding bill without firm timetables for withdrawal.

I join the vast majority of Americans who believe it is long since past time to end US participation -- which translates into lost lives and squandered billions. I think I am also in the majority in saying this is not the time to create a typical liberal circular firing squad and take out our wrath on those who agree with us.

Compromise is a word that has become sullied in our hyperpartisan era. The House vote was a compromise -- somewhat distasteful to be sure -- but the first step on a long road. Check out the vote tallies and notice how Republicans provided the margin of victory.

We are in the midst of divided government, in every sense of the word. The Democratic majority rests on slender roots and there simple are not enough votes to get things done as we would prefer, at least not yet.

Netroots zealots should target those districts where Republicans provided the margin of victory to a compromise that only delays the inevitable -- and only until September. George Bush's demagoguery about not supporting the troops remains full throated -- even as he throws more of them in harm's way.

But the list of bitter-enders who will support him until the end (of his term) is growing shorter. Let's not build it back up by attacking those who chose a strategic retreat to fight another day with more tools at their disposal.

Cancel that circular firing squad.

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