November 11, 2006

carl-levin.jpg Carl Levin immediately articulated what the American people voted on this Tuesday: It's time to get out of Iraq. A phased withdrawal will be the plan.

LEVIN: First order of business is to change the direction of Iraq policy. The people spoke--dramatically, overwhelmingly, resoundingly--to change the course in Iraq, in a message that was heard around the world. I hope it was heard in the White House.

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Duncan nails it when he says:

At which point McCain and his ventriloquist's dummy, Joe Lieberman, will whine that if only we'd sent MORE troops we would have found the pony. Of course, the president has had the option to send more troops forever and hasn't done so. In fact, there's little the Democrats are likely to do which would stop the president from sending more troops. So McCain/Lieberman will pretend the Dems thwarted the plan for victory, even though the president will be the one who won't let them find the pony in Iraq. Lovely game they're playing. Lovely that they feel this is a game.

ABC supplies the transcript and more videos:

STEPHANOPOULOS: Senator Levin, let me begin with you.

Your leader, Senator Harry Reid, said that the Democrats' first order of business will be investigating Iraq. Is that your first order of business?

LEVIN: First order of business is to change the direction of Iraq policy. The people spoke dramatically, overwhelmingly, resoundingly to change the course in Iraq, in a message that was heard around the world. I hope it was heard in the White House.

But the first order of business, I believe is to join hopefully with some Republicans, who I think now will emerge to press the administration to change course in Iraq by telling the Iraqis that our presence there is not open-ended and that, as a matter of fact, we need to begin a phased redeployment of forces from Iraq in four to six months, to begin that redeployment.

STEPHANOPOULOS: So does that mean -- six months ago, you had a resolution calling for just that, calling for the beginning of a withdrawal. Are you going to reintroduce that resolution, and what makes you think it can pass now? You didn't -- five Democrats weren't on board, I think, last time.

LEVIN: Well, two things have happened. Number one, the people have spoken, in a very, very strong way that they don't buy the administration position that we are, quote, "absolutely winning," as the president said, or, I believe on this program, as the vice president said, full steam ahead in Iraq.

They don't buy it, they rejected it, and now we have a more Democratic Congress, which I believe is willing to implement the people's will and to put some pressure on this president to change course in Iraq, forget the stay-the-course policy that is no longer viable -- if never was, as far as I'm concerned, but clearly now no longer viable, given the election results and the new makeup of the

Congress -- and we're going to urge the president on a bipartisan basis, hopefully, to change course in Iraq by doing a number of things. Not only telling the Iraqis that we're not there in an open-ended way, but also to set some milestones here so that we can begin to withdraw in four to six months.

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