During his 2004 presidential campaign, Sen. John Kerry (D.-Mass.) often took both sides of the same issue (“I actually did vote for the $87 billion before I voted against it”). But on the Senate floor last week, Senate Majority Whip Mitch McConnell (R.-Ky.) noted that Kerry has now taken four positions on how the U.S should withdraw from Iraq.
“The first plan of the Senator from Massachusetts was to withdraw 20,000 troops by the end of 2005 and the bulk of troops out by the end of 2006,” said McConnell. “Sen. Kerry’s second plan: to withdraw if the Iraq Government was not finalized by May 15 of this year. The third plan … was to have all the troops out by the end of this year. … And tomorrow we will have Kerry’s fourth plan, which is to have the withdrawal consummated by July 1 of next year.” When the Senate voted on Kerry Plan No. 4, it was defeated 86 to 13. Independent Sen. James Jeffords (Vt.) joined 12 Democrats in voting for it: Daniel Akaka (Hawaii), Barbara Boxer (Calif.), Dick Durbin (Ill.), Russ Feingold (Wis.), Tom Harkin (Iowa.), Daniel Inouye (Hawaii), Teddy Kennedy (Mass.), Kerry, Frank Lautenberg (N.J.), Patrick Leahy (Vt.), Bob Menendez (N.J.), and Ron Wyden (Ore.).