Two Games

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"Two Games"

Kevin Drum says I’m wrong about who wins the testimony battle. In fact, though, we’re talking about two different battles. I’m saying the GOP needed a big win in PR terms to prevent the war’s unpopularity from dragging them even further down in 2008. Kevin’s saying the Democrats needed a big win in order to end the war. Nobody got a big win, so the war will continue, and the Republicans will be dragged down by the war’s unpopularity.

In terms of actually ending the war, I think all prospect of doing so before 2009 was more-or-less signed away when Democrats decided to accept Bush’s framing of the “fund the troops” question and grant Bush an un-amended supplemental appropriation after he vetoed the amended one. Challenging that framing would have been politically challenging, but possibly doable. Having done what they did, though, it’d be extremely difficult to turn around, and there’s no sign of any inclination to do so anyway.

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