Barbara Boxer on The War in Iraq

Last Updated : Jun 24, 2010

Summary

Senator Boxer has opposed the War in Iraq since the beginning.  She was one of only 23 Senators to vote against the authorization for the use of force in Iraq.  She opposed the surge strategy in Iraq and stated that it would not work.  She accused the President of misleading the country into war and of failing to admit errors that were made.  She has called for time tables for withdrawal from the country.

 

Press Release

In November of 2005, Senator Boxer made a press release stating that the war in Iraq was based on false pretenses, and that President Bush has made many mistakes.  She does not detail those mistakes.

 

Condoleezza Rice Testimony

In 2007 after the announcement of the surge in Iraq, Senator Boxer questioned Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice as to the extent of the casualties we can expect from the surge and the prospects for success.  Senator Boxer is very vocal in her belief that the US is "going it alone" and that other countries understand that the war in not winnable.  She implies that the President (Bush) and the administration do not fully comprehend the sacrifice of American soldiers.  She stated that Secretary Rice had no children and would therefore pay no price in the sacrifices needed for the surge.

 

PBS Appearance

In January of 2007, just after Condoleeza Rice testified about the surge in Iraq, Senator Boxer appeared on PBS news hour along with Senator Lindsey Graham and Margaret Warner.  In that appearance, she stated that the case for the surge had not been made and that it would fail because only a political solution would work.  When asked how a political solution was possible with a high level of violence, she did not respond.

 

Impeachment of President Bush

In July of 2007, Senator Boxer appeared on the Ed Schultz show and discussed the War in Iraq and allegations that the President was breaking the law.  She stated that impeachment was on the table, but did not make a specific allegation.  The implication was that Bush misled the country into the Iraq war.

 

Interview - The Progressive

In 2005, Senator Boxer did an interview with "The Progressive" magazine and discussed the situation in Iraq and a recent visit she made there.

 

Statement calling for multilateral efforts to force Iraq to disarm

Senator Boxer signed a resolution in October of 2002 that called on multilateral efforts to force Iraq to disarm weapons of mass destruction. 

 

2010 Re-Election Campaign Website Statements

 

Voting Record

Repealing the Authorization for the Use of Military Force Against Iraq

In November of 2011, Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky proposed an amendment to the yearly defense appropriations act that would have repealed the authorization for the use of force in Iraq. The amendment failed 30-67 with Democrats equally split and a vast majority of Republicans opposing the measure. Barbara Boxer voted in favor of repealing the authorization for the use of force in Iraq.

Barbara Boxer voted in favor of repealing the authorization for the use of force in Iraq.

Phased Redeployment

On March 15, 2007, S J Res 9 was put forth in an attempt to convince President Bush to commit to timetable for withdrawal of troops from Iraq. The bill was titled "United States Policy in Iraq Resolution of 2007 - Phased Redeployment" and called upon the President to begin the withdrawal of troops from Iraq within 120 days of the enactment of the legislation, and to have all troops out of Iraq by March 31, 2008. The bill was defeated on roll call 75, which was largely among partisan lines with 1 Republican joining the Democrats and 3 Democrats joining the rest of the Republicans. Barbara Boxer voted in favor of the phased redeployment plan.

Barbara Boxer voted in favor of the phased redeployment plan.

Approval of the Surge Strategy

The second piece of legislation was S 574, and it came up for a vote on February 17 and had two main points of emphasis : the Senate continued to support the troops already on the ground in Iraq; and the Senate disapproved of the President\'s surge strategy. The bill only got 56 of the 60 votes required for cloture. 7 Republicans voted in favor of the legislation while only 1 Democrat sided with the Republicans. 10 Senators cast a "No Vote" (9 R and 1 D). (roll call) Barbara Boxer voted in favor of the legislation by voting for cloture. This was a vote against the surge strategy in Iraq

Barbara Boxer voted in favor of the legislation by voting for cloture. This was a vote against the surge strategy in Iraq

Approval of the Surge Strategy

On January 10, 2007, President Bush announced a "surge" strategy in which 20,000 additional troops would be sent to Iraq to bolster the troops already there. In February of 2007, the US Senate voted on two bills with the purposes of expressing the Senate\'s disapproval of this strategy. S 470 was the first such piece of legislation, and it came up for a vote on the Senate floor on February 5, 2007. Along with expressing the disapproval of the Senate towards the President\'s recently announced strategy, the bill also outlined a series of strategy suggestions for the President. These suggestions included the transfer of equipment to Iraqi officials, the continuing of operations in the Anbar province, and numerous other items. The bill only got 49 of the 60 votes required for cloture. Only 2 members of each party voted with the opposing party with almost all Democrats voting to disapprove the surge and almost all Republicans voting to approve of the strategy by refusing to allow the legislation a cloture vote. (roll call 44). Barbara Boxer voted in favor of S470 (disapproved of the surge) by voting for cloture.

Barbara Boxer voted in favor of S470 (disapproved of the surge) by voting for cloture.

To provide for a reduction and transition of United States forces in Iraq

In September of 2007, the Senate voted on an amendment by Senator Levin to require that all troops begin to be withdrawn within 90 days. The amendment also stated that the troops remaining in Iraq would only be there for the purposes of protecting US personnel and infrastructure. Barbara Boxer cast a "No Vote"

Dwell Time

In September of 2007, the Senate voted on a measure to require US servicemen be stationed at home for an amount of time equal to their deployment time. The measure received a majority of votes, but not the number required to pass. Barbara Boxer voted in favor of the measure to require equal dwell time.

Barbara Boxer voted in favor of the measure to require equal dwell time.

Contract Award Overview

Later in the year, the same amendment was introduced into the Senate by Senator Dorgan. This amendment has the same purpose and failed to achieve the needed votes by a simlar margin. Barbara Boxer voted to support the amendment to create the special committee.

Barbara Boxer voted to support the amendment to create the special committee.

Contract Award Overview

In 2005, a series of accidents at military bases in Iraq which were built by US contractors such as Halliburton, prompted Congress to call for investigations into the awarding of contracts. There were two ammendments introduced to separate pieces of legislation to attempt to accomplish the goal of investigating the contract awards process. roll call 228 concerned the Dorgan amendment, and was the first attempt to establish a special committee on the awarding of contracts in Iraq. The amendment failed by a narrow margin in a 53-44 vote. Barbara Boxer voted to support the amendment to create the special committee.

Barbara Boxer voted to support the amendment to create the special committee.

Authorization for the use of Force in Iraq

On October 11, 2002 the US Senate cast the first vote concerning the war in Iraq. This vote was to authorize the use of military force against Iraq (H J Res 114). Although the vote to authorize the use of force in Afghanistan was unanimous, the vote to authorize the use of force in Iraq passed 77-23. All but 2 of the 50 Republicans supported the legilslation while 29 of the 50 Democrats voted to authorize the use of force. Barbara Boxer voted against giving the President the Authorization to use force against Iraq

Barbara Boxer voted against giving the President the Authorization to use force against Iraq

 

Sponsored and Cosponsored Legislation

Session-110; Bill Number-S J Res 9; United States Policy in Iraq Resolution of 2007 - Cosponsor

Directs the President to begin the phased redeployment of U.S. forces from Iraq within 120 days of enactment of this joint resolution with the goal of redeploying by March 31, 2008, all U.S. combat forces from Iraq, except for a limited number essential for protecting U.S. and coalition personnel and infrastructure, training and equipping Iraqi forces, and conducting targeted counter-terrorism operations. Requires the President to transition the U.S. forces' mission in Iraq promptly to such purposes. States that such redeployment shall be implemented as part of a diplomatic, political, and economic strategy that includes sustained engagement with Iraq's neighbors and the international community in order to bring stability to Iraq. Directs the President, not later than 60 days after enactment of this Act and every 90 days thereafter, to report to Congress on the progress made in such mission transition and force redeployment.

Session-110; Bill Number-S 1825; Commission on Wartime Contracting Establishment Act - Cosponsor

A bill to provide for the study and investigation of wartime contracts and contracting processes in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, and for other purposes.

Session-110; Bill Number-S 2633; A bill to provide for the safe redeployment of United States troops from Iraq. - Cosponsor

Directs the President to transition the mission of U.S. forces in Iraq to the following purposes: conducting limited scope and duration operations against al Qaeda and other international terrorist organizations; providing security for U.S. infrastructure and personnel; training and equipping Iraqi security services and U.S. forces; redeploying U.S. forces from Iraq. Exempts such activities from the funding and redeployment provisions of this Act. Directs the President to begin the phased redeployment of U.S. forces from Iraq. Prohibits funds from being obligated or expended to continue the U.S. Armed Forces deployment in Iraq as of 120 days after the enactment of this Act.

Session-110; Bill Number-S 2426; Congressional Oversight of Iraq Agreements Act of 2007 - Cosponsor

A bill to provide for congressional oversight of United States agreements with the Government of Iraq.

Session-110; Bill Number-S 287; Prohibiting Funds for the Surge - Cosponsor

Prohibits the U.S. government from obligating or expending funds to increase the number of U.S. military forces in Iraq above the number for such forces which existed as of January 9, 2007, without a specific congressional authorization for such increase.

Session-110; Bill Number-S 233; Prohibiting funds for the surge - Cosponsor

Prohibits the U.S. government from obligating or expending funds to increase the number of U.S. military forces in Iraq above the number for such forces which existed as of January 9, 2007, without a specific congressional authorization for such increase.

Session-110; Bill Number-S 1077; Transition the mission - Cosponsor

Directs the President to transition the mission of U.S. forces in Iraq to the following purposes: (1) conducting limited scope and duration operations against al Qaeda and other international terrorist organizations; (2) providing security for U.S. infrastructure and personnel; and (3) training and equipping Iraqi security services.

References

[1] Website: The Progressive Article: Barbara Boxer Interview Author: Ruth Conniff Accessed on: 06/24/2010

[2] Website: Crooks and Liars Article: Barbara Boxer says Impeachment should be on the table Author: John Amato Accessed on: 06/24/2010

[3] Website: PBS NewsHour Article: Senators Debate President's New Iraq Strategy Author: NA Accessed on: 06/24/2010

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