In overwhelming vote, 86-13, U.S. Senate rejects troops withdrawal from Iraq before mission is complete...
It appears the first of the Democrat-sponsored measures was politically motivated to benefit Senators John Kerry and Russ Feingold, who are potential contenders for the Democrat presidential nomination by their party in 2008 and interested in appealing to the Democrat base. Only 13 Democrats voted "yes" on that amendment.
Since Senators terms are staggered, with 1/3 of Senate seats being up for re-election every two years, some of those Democrat Senators voting "no" will likely stand for re-election in 2006 or 2008---and are likely to be inclined to come down on the side of this issue that is supported by the majority of voters in their various states.
More below and here.
"The GOP-controlled Senate on Thursday overwhelmingly rejected a Democratic call to start withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq by years' end, as the two parties sought to define their election-year positions on a war that has grown increasingly unpopular.
"Withdrawal is not an option. Surrender is not a solution," declared Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist of Tennessee, who characterized Democrats as defeatists wanting to abandon Iraq before the mission is complete...
In an 86-13 vote, the Senate turned back a Democratic proposal that would require the administration to withdraw all combat troops from Iraq by July 2007, with redeployments beginning this year. A second vote on another Democratic proposal to begin withdrawing this year, but with no timetable for the war's end, was planned immediately afterward. ...it was offered as an amendment to an annual military bill and expected to fail, mostly along partisan lines..."