The Final World On Lieberman-Kyl

More

(1) The resolution was non-binding and substantively different from the 2002 use of force resolution. Lieberman-Kyl has zero authority; it expresses senses, not findings.

(2) Obama's main substantive argument is about power and authority: should Congress give President Bush even a hint -- and Obama, looking at the intent of the initial sponsors, sees such a hint -- that the commander in chief has their permission to launch military strikes or continue to justify a large troop presence in Iraq on the basis of Iran's intervention in the war?

(3) Clinton's main argument is that she is a senator, and according to Obama's logic, anything that comes up for a vote could be interpreted or warped so as to give President Bush's actions the imprimateur of legitimacy. Clinton is on the Armed Services Committee; Iran's Revolutionary Guards are attacking U.S. soldiers; the biggest beneficiary of the Iraq war being ran, it's simply reality -- as Obama himself acknowledged -- that Iran's actions will in some way factor into decisions about when and where and how fast to move troops out. Clinton turned a sketchy resolution into a much better one, one that wasn't bellicose and gave no hints or winks to the White House. And, oh -- Obama didn't show up and argue this during the vote itself.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Marc Ambinder is an Atlantic contributing editor. He is also a senior contributor at Defense One, a contributing editor at GQ, and a regular contributor at The Week.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

What Is the Greatest Story Ever Told?

A panel of storytellers share their favorite tales, from the Bible to Charlotte's Web.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

The Death of Film

You'll never hear the whirring sound of a projector again.

Video

How to Hunt With Poison Darts

A Borneo hunter explains one of his tribe's oldest customs: the art of the blowpipe

Video

A Delightful, Pixar-Inspired Cartoon

An action figure and his reluctant sidekick trek across a kitchen in search of treasure.

Video

I Am an Undocumented Immigrant

"I look like a typical young American."

Video

Why Did I Study Physics?

Using hand-drawn cartoons to explain an academic passion

Writers

Up
Down

More in Politics

Just In