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CONFLICT IN IRAQ: ARTIST'S TRIBUTE; DEMOCRATS' PROPOSAL

Democrats settle on legislation for Iraq

Plan would call for U.S. troops to come home if conditions are not met.

March 02, 2007|From the Associated Press

WASHINGTON — House Democratic leaders have coalesced around legislation that would require troops to come home from Iraq within six months if that country's leaders failed to meet promises to help reduce violence there, party officials said Thursday.

The plan would retain a Democratic proposal prohibiting the deployment to Iraq of troops with insufficient rest or training or who already have served there for more than a year. Under the plan, such troops could be sent to Iraq only if President Bush waived those standards and reported to Congress each time.

The proposal is the latest attempt to resolve deep divisions among Democrats on how far to go to scale back U.S. involvement in Iraq. Rep. James P. Moran (D-Va.) said the latest version had the support of the party's leadership.

"We're going to report out" a war spending bill "that's responsive to the will of the voters last November and brings our troops home as soon and safely as possible," Moran said in an interview.

Moran, a member of the House committee that oversees military spending, said the plan was discussed Thursday in a closed-door meeting of committee Democrats.

Brendan Daly, a spokesman for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco), declined to confirm the details of the legislation or say whether Pelosi backed the plan.

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