WASHINGTON — Two potential 2008 presidential candidates appealed Tuesday for the Senate to support their call to withdraw U.S. combat troops from Iraq "by a hard and fast deadline," a position putting them at odds with most of their fellow Democrats.
"Our country desperately needs a new vision for strengthening our national security, and it starts by redeploying U.S. forces out of Iraq," Sens. John F. Kerry of Massachusetts and Russell D. Feingold of Wisconsin wrote in an e-mail sent to 3 million people nationwide.
In what promises to be a highly partisan election-year showdown Wednesday, the GOP-controlled Senate plans to take up the proposal by Kerry and Feingold that would require the Bush administration to withdraw all combat troops from Iraq by July 1, 2007.
Redeployment would begin immediately, under the proposal.
At least six other Democrats have publicly or privately indicated support for that position. The Senate will vote on the proposal by week's end.