THIS IS INTERESTING: “House Republicans, sensing an opportunity for political advantage, maneuvered for a quick vote and swift rejection Friday of a Democratic lawmaker’s call for an immediate troop withdrawal from Iraq.”

UPDATE: “A spine is detected.”

ANOTHER UPDATE: The Hotline has more.

MORE: Here’s a post by Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, who’s guestblogging at

MORE STILL: Larry Kudlow writes:

Jack Murtha is a decorated Vietnam vet and a good man, a patriot. But his six-month withdrawal idea, even including US forces in nearby bases, is not a good idea.

The terrorist forces who fight against freedom and democracy and in favor of communist-like totalitarianism will not announce a withdrawal schedule.

Therefore I believe that Pres. Bush and Sen. McCain are exactly right: premature withdrawal would be a disaster.

That said, however, I do not like the Duncan Hunter resolution “…that the deployment of United States forces in Iraq be terminated immediately.”

It is not serious. It demeans the House. It totally politicizes the debate. It is a ploy and a rather weak one at that. . . .

Why not state the resolution in the affirmative? ” We pledge to deploy troops in Iraq until the mission of liberation, freedom and democracy is satisfactorily completed.” And why not seek to gain as much bi-partisan political support as possible? This would truly help the mission, and the troops.

I think that’s right. And I think that to the (large) extent that some Republicans are making this a personal issue about Murtha, instead of talking about the absolutely unsupportable nature of his proposal, it’s a mistake.

FINALLY: Resolution to withdraw was voted down 403-3.

And reader Tony McKinley writes:

I watched a lot of the “debate” on C-SPAN last night, and it definitely was not a personal attack on Murtha. In fact, I’m proud to report that my own Representative, Curt Weldon, and many, many other Republicans went out of their way to praise Murtha.

I was responding more to the comments in the blogosphere, I guess. But good point.