February 05, 2007

CRAPO CALLS FOR FULL AND FAIR DEBATE OVER IRAQ STRATEGY

Votes today, fueled by partisan choices, had limited discussion and scope

Washington, DC â?? Idaho Senator Mike Crapo issued the following statement after the U.S. Senate voted against cloture on S. 470, the Iraq Resolution Bill, regarding military troops in Iraq. The final vote was 49 yeas to 47 nays; 60 votes were needed to end debate (invoke cloture). Crapo was among those who voted to permit full debate to continue.â??Matters of war deserve full debate. It was distressing to learn that Senate procedures were being manipulated to preclude a full debate on what may be the most important issue ever to come before a Congressâ??war. In fact, the efforts to limit discussion and consideration of different proposed resolutions in order to ensure a certain outcome undermine the significance of the issue. Thankfully, todayâ??s vote ensures that debate will continue in the Senate. It assures that we have an opportunity to debate all the ideas about what message to send to our military troops as well as the American public and the world. While each Senator may differ considerably from the next regarding our nationâ??s strategy in Iraq, we owe it to the public to have a full and open debate followed by votes that will provide direction for our country, not just political posturing. We should ensure that a number of differing positions are considered.â??For success in Iraq, it is imperative that all branches of government work together toward a common goal. Non-binding resolutions that seek to convey the sense of Congress have a role in the functioning of our government. But I fear that without a full and fair debate some of the Iraq resolution proposals serve primarily to show deep divisions in Congress and the U.S. government during wartime. This is not a message that I am willing to send while service personnel are engaged in their missions. We must remain united in our support for our men and women in uniform as they carry out their duties, and those troops deserve to have various proposals to be debated on the U.S. Senate floor.â??My vote today against cloture should not be misunderstood. This is a very important debate, one that should be fair and open. It is my desire to find an appropriate strategy regarding our nationâ??s continued involvement in Iraq. The vote in the Senate today tried to end that discussion prematurely, and my vote against cloture registers my objections to the way this debate has been handled.â??