Sep 19 2007

Graham Opposes Webb Amendment

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today voted against the Webb Amendment to the Senate Defense Authorization bill.

The amendment was a power-grab which sought to take the responsibility of setting troop rotation schedules away from the military and President and give it to the Congress.  War opponents have touted the amendment as one means of ending the troop surge in Iraq.

The vote failed by a vote of 56-44.  Sixty votes were required to move forward

“The Webb amendment intended to take care of the troops.  I don’t question anyone’s intent, but if you really want to take care of the troops let them win.

“The Webb amendment was one of the more ill-advised approaches to fighting the War on Terror.  It was a historic constitutional infringement on the power of the Commander in Chief allowing Congress to micromanage troop rotations and deployments.  The amendment would have hurt the brave young men and women fighting the War on Terror and set a terrible precedent for fighting future conflicts.

“The last thing in the world we should do to our troops -- particularly in the name of helping them -- is to put 535 Members of Congress in charge of troop rotations as we fight the War on Terror.  With an approval rating below 20 percent, Congress has not risen to the level of being visionary leaders.

“The Webb amendment was a back door attempt to stop the war in Iraq by restricting the available manpower.    I’m very pleased the Senate rejected this ill-advised amendment.”