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Senate Republicans' filibuster threat could kill Bush's "surge" plan

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Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is threatening to filibuster any congressional attempt to stop Bush's plan to escalate the war in Iraq. Only problem? He can't. And here's why.

1. Filibusters kill legislation. They don't create legislation.

2. In order to do his surge/escalation in Iraq, Bush doesn't need to STOP Congress from passing laws, he needs to get them to PASS a law - to the tune of $5.6 billion. That's the price tag of Bush's latest little escalation gambit.

3. That $5.6 billion is new money - money that Congress must appropriate, or Bush can't escalate the war because he won't have the money to do it.

4. That means Mitch McConnell can filibuster legislation until the cows come home, but all McConnell's filibuster is going to do is guarantee that the Congress doesn't pass legislation addressing Bush's escalation plan. Fine. If Congress doesn't pass some kind of escalation plan, then Bush won't have the extra money he needs to launch his escalation.

5. So McConnell's filibuster threat is meaningless, and in fact, counterproductive. McConnell will in essence be doing the Democrats' work for them - stopping any legislation that would provide Bush the money he needs to escalate.

Ergo, the overwhelming majority of Americans who oppose Bush's escalation plan have Bush by the balls.

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