Lying low, for now

What is all this political hand-wringing over the Iraq votes?  How many votes for an override, the differences between the liberal Democrats and the blue dogs, are Democrats over-reaching?

The Democrats are not only doing the right thing pushing back against the Bush administration but the Republicans are quaking in their boots every time they have to cast another vote for Bush’s Iraq policy.

Here’s my guess. Many Republicans feel that they have until early fall to keep their powder dry and lie low. They raise some questions in their public comments but basically toe the Bush line on the votes. If there is not a dramatic turnaround in Iraq soon they know that there is no Plan B. They know that the politics of Iraq, if it rolls into 2008, will be a disaster for Republicans. They know that this war has no light at the end of the tunnel, only more devastation and disaster. They also know that things are unraveling in Afghanistan with more and more civilians getting caught in the crossfire and increasing concern about U.S. troop presence and action on the ground.

They are scared to death that Bush will not change course fast enough and that the tidal wave will build next fall and throughout next year. They know that if Iraq is very much on the political table in the 2008 elections their losses will be staggering. The next pressure point will come when members of Congress return from the August recess this summer and begin to call on President Bush to change course. That, of course, will prove the Democrats right all along.