GOP Senators back Lugar’s Iraq shift.

“Republican senators expressed support today for Indiana Sen. Richard G. Lugar’s call for an immediate change of course in Iraq,” CQ reports.

“I hail what he did,” said Sen. John W. Warner, R-Va., former chairman of the Armed Services Committee. “It shows the strength that each of us individually must bring to this debate.” Warner said that he too feels the September reporting date is too long to wait to revise U.S. war policy. […]

There is a growing feeling among senators that the U.S. presence in Iraq needs review, [Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL)] said, adding that he agrees that troops levels should be reduced “as soon as it is realistic to do it.” […]

Sen. George Voinovich, R-Ohio, said that it is important to find out if the administration is listening to differing views on Iraq. “If they’re not, I think that many of us are going to look at legislation that will limit the number of troops,” he said. Voinovich intends to submit a letter to the administration detailing an exit plan that would include engagement with the Arab League and the United Nations, he said.

UPDATE: The Washington Post buries Lugar’s speech.

UPDATE II: Lugar “just told reporters that the White House called him to ask for a meeting. Lugar would not say who he is meeting with or when it would happen, but all indications are that it will be National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley and it will take place later in the week.”


UPDATE III: The Crypt has posted Voinovich’s letter to Bush: “Though it may seem contradictory, I believe we can accomplish more in Iraq by gradually and responsibly reducing our forces and focusing on a robust strategy of international cooperation and coordinated foreign aid.”