More Troops?

MORE TROOPS?….Jonah Goldberg today:

Here we have a president forthrightly trying to win a war, and the opposition — which not long ago was in favor of increasing troops, when Bush was against that — won’t say what it wants….Kerry, Pelosi and other Democrats were in favor of more troops before they were against it.

I guess it’s Golden Oldies Day on the right. Or, more likely, desperation time. But we need to put this canard to bed before it catches on.

For the record: Many Democrats, along with plenty of conservatives, have noted that the initial invasion of Iraq didn’t have enough troops to successfully occupy the country. And they might be right. However, that’s quite a different thing from advocating that we send more U.S. troops to Baghdad now, something that I don’t recall either Kerry or Pelosi ever advocating.

In fact, if by “not long ago” Goldberg means sometime in the past year, then he’d be hard pressed to find more than a handful of Democrats — Pelosi and Kerry certainly not among them — who have even come close to suggesting we send more troops to Iraq. The Reed-Levin amendment, calling for a phased withdrawal to begin in 2006, garnered the support of 38 out of 44 Democratic senators when it was put to a vote last June. In the House, I don’t think the Republican leadership ever allowed a vote on a similar resolution, but on the resolution they did allow a vote on, three-quarters of House Democrats supported a phased withdrawal even though the resolution was worded to make virtual traitors out of anyone who voted that way. (Technically, Dems voted against a resolution opposing a withdrawal timeline. That also meant they had to vote against all the related boilerplate praising our men and women in uniform.)

It’s certainly true that Democrats have not all been of one mind about the Iraq war. But “in favor of increasing troops”? Please.