This week the House of Representatives came very close to voting for an end to the Afghanistan War. The McGovern-Jones amendment to the Defense Authorization Act calling for “an accelerated transition” out of Afghanistan fell just 11 votes short of passage. The final vote was 204-215. Twenty-six Republicans joined all but eight Democrats in voting for the bill.
The McGovern-Jones amendment has become the litmus test for gauging Congressional opposition to the war. Last year the amendment received 162 votes. This year’s tally of 204 represents a 42 vote increase, in a House of Representatives now dominated by Republicans. This sends a strong political message to the White House that the war must end. Congress is finally catching up to the wishes of the American people, who according to the polls overwhelmingly want the war in Afghanistan to be over.
The pressure will now increase for the President to announce a substantial draw down when he makes his promised decision to begin military withdrawals in July.
To read why and how the war must be ended in a responsible manner, see my just published book Ending Obama’s War.