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November 21, 2007
The Iraq issue in 2008
It was just this past spring that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid was proclaiming:
"We're going to pick up Senate seats as a result of this war," Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (Nev.) told reporters yesterday. "Senator Schumer has shown me numbers that are compelling and astounding."
The Democrats clearly understood that the worse the situation in Iraq became, the better their electoral prospects.
It was just this past summer that House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn worried that a positive report on the surge in September by General David Petraeus would be “a big problem for us”.
The Democrats clearly understood that the better the situation in Iraq became, the worse their electoral prospects.
It was just this month that House Appropriations Committee Chairman David Obey was speculating that violence was down in Iraq because the terrorists "are running out of people to kill,” and because “[t]here are fewer targets of opportunity.”
The Democrats clearly understand that the better the American people understand that the situation in Iraq is improving, the worse their electoral prospects.
However, like most other pronouncements of doom regarding Iraq over the last few months, Obey's has been met with contrary evidence:
Iraqis are voting with their feet by returning home after exile
The figures are hard to estimate precisely but the process could involve hundreds of thousands of people. The numbers are certainly large enough, as we report today, for a mass convoy to be planned next week as Iraqis who had opted for exile in Syria return to their homeland. It is one of the most striking signs that not only has violence in Baghdad and adjacent provinces decreased dramatically in recent months, but confidence in the economic and political future of Iraq has risen sharply.
Violence is down. Iraqis are returning. The American people are beginning to see this progress, despite the efforts of Democrats and many in the media to hide it from them.
For now, the number of Iraqis returning may seem small compared to an estimated 2 million that have fled. But the number is growing faster than anyone has anticipated. And those returning are not returning as targets of opportunity for terrorists, but as participants in the opportunity for freedom.
To the extent that the war in Iraq will play a significant role in the 2008 elections, the numbers should be compelling and astounding to Democrats, in a direction they never could have imagined just a few months ago