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Farr's Reasons For Voting No--Still No Call to Pull Out Troops

Rep. Sam Farr cites concern about alliances and "home security" rather than demanding the immediate end to an criminal and immoral war which threatens world peace and security and makes killers out of U.S. soldiers.
Farr's statement is disappointing, but his vote--one of only 12 in Congress is courageous and encouraging. I believe it reflects the fact that 99% of constituent letters opposed the war. And I believe a significant portion of that group wants troops pulled out immediately.

Condemning how we got into the war is not enough. We must demand that we support our troops by withdrawing them now and taking real rather than symbolic action to achieve this end.

Farr expresses legitimate concerns about U.S. unilateralism, but he does not give voice to what is the primary concern of most of us: to get U.S. troops out of there now. Hoping this will happen "soon" is not enough.

Robert Norse

P.S. Please call Farr's office at 429-1976 and very clearly tell them (1) get the troops out and stop the bombing; and (2) tally this vote and contact you in a week.
Also be prepared to demand City Council take a strong stand on pulling out the troops and encouraging young soldiers to disobey unjust orders to kill at its April 7th Monday Evening Town Hall meeting at the Civic Auditorium.

> -----Original Message-----
> > From: Rosen, Sarah
> > Sent: Thursday, April 03, 2003 8:36 PM
> > Subject: RELEASE: Farr on Emergency Wartime Funds
> >
> > April 3, 2003 202-225-2861
> > or 202-225-4688
> >
> > sarah.rosen (at)
> >

(Washington, DC) B As the U.S. House of Representatives debates the Emergency Wartime Supplemental, U.S. Rep. Sam Farr (D-Carmel) today declared his intention to vote "no" on the final bill. Rep. Farr issued the following statement on his decision:

"It is never easy to make spending decisions in Congress, especially on something as critical as war. As legislators, we deal with competing interests every day and, often, we
are able to arrive at a decision that does the most good, or at least the least harm. But tonight, I am making the only decision that my conscious could allow. Although this bill will be passed by an overwhelming majority, I plan to vote 'no' on this supplemental.

"I have two major reasons for voting against this bill. First, because it leaves our first responders at home, our 'troops' on the homefront, without complete protection.

Second, because I do not believe this bill addresses another emergency - repairing U.S. relations with the international community and its representative organizations, such as the United Nations and NATO.

"This war is the result of failed diplomacy. This war cost us valuable allies, and now it is costing us our lives. It will also cost us - the American taxpayer - billions of dollars. In the last Persian Gulf War, we relied on our allies. The war cost the U.S. about $61 billion, but
almost all of it was reimbursed. The amount of money in this one Supplemental - larger than the entire cost of the first Persian Gulf War - is the largest Supplemental in history. At about $75 billion, it is larger than the entire budget of the State of California.

"The emergency this bill supposedly addresses is the security of the American people. First and foremost, American security begins at home. Our attention in the Congress, must therefore be focused on protecting the territory of the United States from attack. That is
the apparent reason we intervened in Afghanistan and now Iraq, and in other countries across the globe.

"This bill inadequately addresses the security needs of the United States. We are spending $62.5 billion for military activities in this bill, and only $4.25 billion for 'Homeland Security.' Our troops overseas should be secure in the knowledge that their loved ones here are safe from any form of domestic terrorism.

"An amendment offered by Representative David Obey of Wisconsin, ranking Democrat on the Appropriations Committee, would have addressed the need for increased homeland security, but the Republican leadership did not allow the amendment to be debated on the floor of the House.

"This bill also purportedly addresses the future of rebuilding Iraq. It provides just $2.4 billion for 'Relief and Reconstruction.' The sum is woefully inadequate to meet the needs of the Iraqi people. We are in the process of bombing their country, destroying their infrastructure. And when the war is over, which I hope will be soon, we will ask them to rebuild and a new democracy.

"This bill provides more money for another airline bailout than it provides for the foundation of an Iraqi democracy.

"Moreover, the money for reconstruction in Iraq - which is supposed to cover a huge range of activities including health, education, transportation, rule of law, agriculture, and more - comes with no apparent structure or oversight. The post-conflict reconstruction of Iraq can provide the U.S. an opportunity to rebuild its frayed alliances with the international community, an opportunity to work with the United Nations and NATO and to strengthen their credibility, which was undermined by the unilateralist approach the Administration has taken previously towards Iraq. This bill shows no vision of an
international civilian administration in post-conflict Iraq, one that will be crucial to winning the peace. This task, as has been demonstrated in Afghanistan, could be far more difficult than mounting a successful war campaign.

"My vote today is in no way a vote against American troops in the field. Their safety is foremost in my thoughts; I hope that they will return quickly to safety of their homes. My vote, rather, is a vote against the priorities of this Administration and the Republican majority, priorities that place an offensive war abroad above defensive protection at home; priorities that place short-term, unilateral quick fixes over international solutions that are sustainable in the longer term.

"This vote is about current U.S. foreign policy and about what direction we are heading in. I think that we are supporting the wrong priorities and are heading in the wrong direction, and that is why I am voting against this bill."

Sarah J. Rosen
Press Secretary
Office of U.S. Rep. Sam Farr
1221 Longworth H.O.B.
Washington, D.C. 20515
(202) 225-2861


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p.s. call, and don't forget to give him the thanks and show of appreciation that we promised his aide for his no vote on supplementing the war. His vote was both significant and real regardless of whatever lack in moral character those of us with flawless intentions may point out.

Yes, let's acknowledge something

Your tactics are always the same, Robert: DEMAND something (never ask, never discuss, never negotiate); take total credit for the outcome if it's what you want; repudiate the person/council for not going ten steps further than you originally demanded; DEMAND those additional ten steps; on and on.
Thank you, Bobby, for bringing some intelligence to this forum.

Boxer and Feinstein?

Once again, why does it seem to go unspoken that we have two senators who not only voted for the war authorization (one of them) but both voted for the war appropriation and sit on influential committees???? Why is there no condemnation of their actions? Why are there no demands to them? They represent us as well, yet they are doing the opposite of everything that we demand of them. Is San Francisco THAT far of a drive away?


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