Friday, April 27, 2007

Gordon Smith Files

Gordon Smith voted to approve a military spending bill that included a schedule for withdrawing troops. The vote was essentially party line, with Hagel being the only other cross over.

Impact: The bill is likely to be vetoed by the president, so it is just another round in a long negotiation. However none of the New England Republicans supported it, I'd guess there was a lot of pressure to tie this up. Had McCain voted and Hagel and Smith stayed in line the bill would not have passed. So long as the bill was stuck in congress Bush could hold to a maximalist line. As soon as he signs a veto he's on record denying funds to troops, and the maximalist line becomes unsustainable. In short troops will likely come home sooner then they would had the vote failed.

Guts: I'd give this 7 out of 10. Going against party is offset by the prospects of a 2008 re-election campaign, and the fact that the bill included funding for a subsidy program that greatly benefits rural (and Red) Oregon. Seems like a good example of putting the interests of voters ahead of party, and doing the right thing at the same time.

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