News Release

Democratic Party and War Funding


Stauber and Rampton co-wrote the recent article “Why Won’t MoveOn Move Forward?” which states: “MoveOn’s organizing around Iraq has become notably ambiguous lately. Although it talks in general terms about bringing the troops home, specific timetables or meaningful steps in that direction are nowhere discussed. Most strikingly, MoveOn has adamantly refused to support the Iraq amendment from Congressional Progressive Caucus leaders Barbara Lee, Lynn Woolsey and Maxine Waters, which calls for ‘a fully funded, and systematic, withdrawal of U.S. soldiers and military contractors from Iraq’ by the end of 2007. …

“The Pelosi bill merely establishes ‘benchmarks’ of progress in Iraq, so that all Bush has to do is certify that he is making progress on those goals to keep funding flowing for the war.”

Stauber is executive director of the Center for Media and Democracy and is co-author with Rampton of Weapons of Mass Deception and The Best War Ever.
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Abramsky, Morris and Zeese are Maryland residents associated with local peace groups. This afternoon, they are involved in an “occupation” of U.S. Representative Chris Van Hollen’s D.C. office in coordination with the national campaign the Occupation Project, a nonviolent effort to defund the Iraq war.

Abramsky said today: “Since the Democrats took control of Congress, 214 U.S. troops have been killed in Iraq. As each day goes by, close to three U.S. troops die in Iraq. Hundreds are wounded each month. This means during the next year and a half another 1,600 will die and tens of thousands more will be injured. Iraqi casualties will be over one hundred-fold greater than those of the U.S.”

Added Morris: “Continuing the U.S. presence in Iraq gains us nothing. The U.S. occupation is the single biggest impediment to an Iraqi-led ceasefire.”

Zeese — who is director of DemocracyRising.US — recently wrote a piece titled “The ‘Democratic Supplemental’ Fails to Deal with Iran and Has Big Loopholes That Will Leave Tens of Thousands or More Troops in Iraq” which states: “The headline that the Democratic leadership would like voters to hear is ‘troops out of Iraq by August 2008.’ But the headline is more a wolf in sheep’s clothing than a reality. …

“For most in the peace movement an August 2008 deadline for withdrawal is already way too slow. Why the delay? On November 17, 2005, Rep. Jack Murtha called for redeployment within six months. Here we are 16 months later and the Democratic leadership is talking about redeployment in 17 months. Six months has turned into 33 months — and in fact the August [2008] deadline is illusory. …”
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Swanson has been writing extensively about the positions of various Democrats on the Iraq war and its funding. His piece “Can Congress End the War? Democratic Leaders May Prefer to Claim They Tried But Failed” was publish by the online journal TomDispatch.

Swanson is co-founder of the coalition.
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167