Published on
The Nation

A State Democratic Party Tells Congress: Reject More War Spending

John Nichols

Working with Progressive
Democrats of America
, anti-war delegates to the state convention of
the Wisconsin Democratic Party passed a floor resolution urging Congress
to block Obama's  "emergency" proposal to spend an addition $33 billion
to maintain the pay for the U.S. military presence in Iraq and

So it is that, in one a state where grassroots Democrats in a state
that provided earlier and enthusiastic support for Barack Obama's
presidential run, members of the president's own party are saying "no"
to Obama's plan to surge more troops and tax dollars into Afghanistan.

"This is a major shift in thinking on the part of a lot of the Dem
party base, who only a year ago were refusing to oppose the war in
Afghanistan, arguing that we needed to support President Obama and his
plans for escalation of the war," says Steve Carlson, a veteran peace
activist and PDA organizer.

PDA and other groups are working this year within state Democratic
parties around the country to generate resolutions and activism against
expanding the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Carlson and other activist are now contacting Democrats in Wisconsin's
congressional delegation -- including some, such as Senator Russ
Feingold and House members Tammy Baldwin, Gwen Moore and Steve Kagen,
and Dave Obey, who have anti-war records or have made anti-war
statements, and others, such as Senator Herb Kohl and Congressman
Ron Kind, who have been war backers -- to "tell them the news" that
their state party opposes steering more money toward the wars in
Afghanistan and Iraq.

In addition to opposing the supplemental, the Wisconsin party
resolution urged members of the state's congressional delegation to
co-sponsor Florida Congressman Alan Grayson's "The
War Is Making You Poor Act,"
which would have the Pentagon
prosecute the wars with the $549 billion dollar base budget requested by
President Obama and use the money the "emergency spending" the
administration is seeking to cut taxes for working Americans.

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