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THE HOUSE : War in the Gulf

January 23, 1991

By a vote of 399 to 6, with 30 not voting, the House approved a non-binding resolution (Senate Resolution 2) commending the performance of President Bush and the U.S. military in the war with Iraq. Most floor remarks were non-controversial and heavily patriotic. But some members saw the Democratic-drafted measure as political cover for those who days earlier, on a pair of issues, had voted against authorizing Bush to begin hostilities and for delaying any attack until after international sanctions and diplomacy had been given more time to work. Those votes occurred four days before the Jan. 16 attack on Iraq, and Bush prevailed on both issues despite heavy opposition.

Supporter Duncan L. Hunter (R-Coronado) said: "I think the Democrat leadership made a mistake in bringing us back for a cover vote. I don't think we need a cover vote. I think members who voted one way or the other (before the war) can explain that to their constituencies. . . . I think the members who in good conscience voted against it shouldn't have any reason to change their position at this time, and those members who voted for it have all the same justifications. . . ."

Opponent Charles A. Hayes (D-Ill.) said: "I could not support the President last week, and I cannot support him today by saying, 'Amen, you were right, Mr. President.' This is not a move that questions one's patriotism because I know that I'm just as patriotic as any of my colleagues, (but) I refuse to sanction more deaths. . . . I will never abandon my support for my troops, nor for innocent human beings whether they be Americans, Israelis or Arabs. Everyone is entitled to the right to life."

A yes vote supported the resolution. How They Voted

Rep. Gallegly (R): Yea

Rep. Lagomarsino (R): Yea

Source: Roll Call Report Syndicate

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