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Retiring Democrat Sen. Fritz Hollings was the only senator to vote against supporting U.S. troops in Iraq.

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Roll Call: Hollings Alone In Vote Against Supporting Troops

Retiring Democrat Sen. Fritz Hollings was the only senator to vote against supporting U.S. troops in Iraq.

On October 2, by a vote of 98 to 1, the Senate approved a symbolic amendment to the 2003 supplemental spending bill (S. 1689) to commend the Armed Forces of the United States for their role in the war on terrorism.

Normally, a vote on such a resolution would have been a pure formality, since no politician, no matter how partisan, would want to make the unpatriotic gesture of refusing to support the troops.

But Sen. Fritz Hollings (D.-S.C.), the cantankerous and bitterly partisan senior citizen from South Carolina, who has already announced his plans to retire next year, chose to do just that.

“[T]he majority ought to be ashamed for wasting the Senate’s time with this political booby trap,” he declared in his often incomprehensible lowland accent.

“The amendment states that Saddam was a threat to our national security. He was not. . . The amendment states that the United States pursued sustained diplomatic, political, and economic efforts to remove the so-called threat peacefully. That is wrong. We said to the United Nations, ‘Get out of the way. You’re irrelevant.’ We said to the international community, ‘You’re either with us or against us.’ Before we removed Saddam, we removed Hans Blix. The amendment says we eliminated terrorist infrastructure in Afghanistan and Iraq. Just read the morning paper and you will know that is not true. They have plenty of terrorist infrastructure, and they are killing our soldiers every day.”

Hollings has displayed erratic behavior for years, but this vote may be remembered as one of his most puzzling acts. It immediately drew a storm of criticism from Palmetto State Republicans.

None of Hollings’ fellow Democrats would follow him in this bizarre and futile gesture.

A “yes” vote was a vote to congratulate the Armed Services of the United States for their work in the war on terrorism. A “no” vote was a vote against supporting the troops.

FOR THE AMENDMENT: 98 AGAINST THE AMENDMENT: 1
REPUBLICANS FOR (51):
Alexander
Allard
Allen
Bennett
Bond
Brownback
Bunning
Burns
Campbell
Chafee
Chambliss
Cochran
Coleman
Collins
Cornyn
Craig
Crapo
DeWine
Dole
Domenici
Ensign
Enzi
Fitzgerald
Frist
Graham (S.C.)
Grassley
Gregg
Hagel
Hatch
Hutchison
Inhofe
Kyl
Lott
Lugar
McCain
McConnell
Murkowski
Nickles
Roberts
Santorum
Sessions
Shelby
Smith
Snowe
Specter
Stevens
Sununu
Talent
Thomas
Voinovich
Warner

DEMOCRATS FOR: (46):
Akaka
Baucus
Bayh
Biden
Bingaman
Boxer
Breaux
Byrd
Cantwell
Carper
Clinton
Conrad
Corzine
Daschle
Dayton
Dodd
Dorgan
Durbin
Edwards
Feingold
Feinstein
Harkin
Inouye
Johnson
Kennedy
Kerry
Kohl
Landrieu
Lautenberg
Leahy
Levin
Lieberman
Lincoln
Mikulski
Miller
Murray
Nelson (Fla.)
Nelson (Neb.)
Pryor
Reed (R.I.)
Reid (Nev.)
Rockefeller
Sarbanes
Schumer
Stabenow
Wyden

INDEPENDENTS FOR (1):
Jeffords

DEMOCRAT AGAINST (1):
Hollings

NOT VOTING: 5

REPUBLICANS (0): DEMOCRATS (1):
Graham (Fla.)
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