Friday, June 3, 2011

House Rebukes Obama on Libya With Wink and Nod Vote

The House gave President Obama a slap on the wrist today for not consulting Congress on sending U.S. forces into action in Libya, but knocked down another measure with real teeth that called for pulling out of the NATO campaign within 15 days.

The House voted 268-145 on a resolution written by Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) that says Obama did not provide "compelling rationale" for joining the air campaign against Moammar Gadhafi and he must deliver an update to Congress in the next two weeks.

The White House called the vote "unhelpful," but in truth it was a gift to Obama, who faced a much tougher resolution sponsored by Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) that gathered steam and appeared like it might pass on Wedenesday, when it was originally set to be voted on by the House.

When a coalition of anti-war Democrats and fiscally conservative Republicans started rallying around the Kucinich resolution, Boehner pulled the measure, wrote his own watered-down version and rescheduled the vote for today.

The Kucinich resolution, which would have pulled U.S. forces out of the Libya campaign within 15 days, was defeated 265 to 148. More Republicans supported the Kucinich measure than Democrats.

NATO allies and the Libyan reebels had to be relieved by the outcome.

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