The veto was only the second of Mr. Bush’s presidency. In a six-minute televised speech from the White House, the president called the measure a “prescription for chaos and confusion,” and said, as he has for weeks, that he could not sign it because it contained timetables for troop withdrawal.
“Setting a deadline for withdrawal is setting a date for failure, and that would be irresponsible,” Mr. Bush said. He said the measure would “impose impossible conditions on our commanders in combat” by forcing them to “take fighting directions from politicians 6,000 miles away in Washington, D.C.”
Oh let's get real here. Look up "chaos" and "confusion" in the dictionary and you'll find this:
And isn't he one of those Washington politicians who's giving the troops their "fighting directions" (what kind of phrase is that?) from the comfort of his cushy oval office while pretending to actually give a crap about the troops?
On Thursday, Oliver Stone and Moveon.org will release an ad attacking Bush for his veto.
The Stone directed ad, which airs nationwide on CNN Thursday, features an impassioned interview with Bruhns as he attacks the administration's treatment of soldiers. [Ron] Kovic [of "Born on the Fourth of July" fame] provides voiceover for the ad.
"I feel that my patriotism has been used and exploited," says former US Army Infantry Sergeant Bruhns. "I am very proud of my military service, but I'm very disappointed in the civilian leadership and administration for sending us needlessly into combat."
Bruhn's interview was selected by the public as part of VideoVets: Bring Our Troops Home. The project features 20 video interviews of soldiers and family members critical of the American occupation in Iraq. Over half a million MoveOn members and others watched the videos. The public voted to select one video to be directed by Oliver Stone. The project is sponsored by MoveOn.org and VoteVets.org. VoteVets is the only political action committee headed by veterans of the war in Iraq, dedicated to electing other veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to public office.
Here's Bruhn's interview:
So, the Democrats made their symbolic move - which took far too long. Bush vetoed it, as expected. What's next?
Democrats concede they do not have enough votes to override the veto. But, speaking in the Capitol shortly after Mr. Bush’s remarks, the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi of California, and the Senate Democratic leader, Harry Reid of Nevada, said they would not be deterred from pushing the president as hard as they could to bring the troops home.
“If the president thinks by vetoing this bill he will stop us from working to change the direction of the war in Iraq, he is mistaken,” Mr. Reid said. He added, “Now he has an obligation to explain his plan to responsibly end this war.”
Riiight...and pigs will fly. Stay tuned.
The next chapter begins Wednesday, when Congressional leaders are expected to meet Mr. Bush at the White House to open negotiations on a new bill. They are expected to look for ways to preserve the benchmarks for Iraqi progress that were included in the initial bill while eliminating the timetables for troop withdrawal that Mr. Bush has emphatically rejected.
Several Republican leaders said Tuesday that they were likely to support such benchmarks, and White House aides said Tuesday that Mr. Bush, who has supported goals and benchmarks for the Iraqi government, might back such a measure — but only if the benchmarks are nonbinding.
[Insert swear words here.]