Dems Fail to Bring Troop Bill to Senate Vote

Warner defection kills bill to mandate time between deployments
By Will McCahill,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 19, 2007 6:45 PM CDT
Senate Majority leader, Harry Reid, third from left, with Senators Joe Biden, D-Del., left, James Webb, D-Va., second from left and Carl Levin, D-Mich. at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, June 12,...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Senate Democrats were unable to muster enough GOP support today to bring to a vote a bill that would have given US troops more down time between overseas deployments. A late defection by Republican John Warner was the death knell for the bill, the Wall Street Journal reports, sponsored by Democrat James Webb, Warner's fellow Virginian.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates seems to have been an effective lobbyist in support of the White House's wish to keep the status quo, the Journal reports. Some Republicans have been reluctant to stand behind the president on the unpopular Iraq war, and Webb's bill was seen as the Democrats' best shot at forcing a policy change in the conflict.