POLITICS
03/28/2008 02:45 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Associated Press Misleads On Dems' "Heartburn"

The AP's Anne Flaherty today filed a story titled "Dems question latest anti-war strategy," in which she ledes: "Rank-and-file Democrats expressed heartburn on Friday over their party's latest anti-war strategy, with some members reluctant to coincide a vote to bring troops home with Veterans Day." Sounds fractious! And all those plurals: "Dems," "rank-and-file Democrats," "some members."

But the grand total of the "rank-and-file" Democrats she gets on the record? One: Representative Gene Taylor, one of the most conservative Democrats in the House, who said, "I think the message in the next week ought to be that a heck of a lot of people have been harmed (in combat) and we ought to take care of them."

The article notes that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi "pushed off plans for a Friday vote after caucus members told her late Thursday they weren't sure they would support it. Liberal Democrats said the proposal was too soft, while conservative members told Pelosi they thought it went too far." But all of the other Democrats on the record avow support for the strategy. Representative John Murtha told the AP, "I don't think you'll see the House pass anything without restrictions." Representative Elijah Cummings insisted: "The American people want out...And we have to make sure we take giant steps in that direction." And in the Senate, Majority Leader Harry Reid said, "he did not want to approve a spending measure for Iraq unless it forced a change in Bush's policies."

The only other discouraging words for the "anti-war strategy" came from White House Spokesman Tony Fratto and Republican Senator Mitch McConnell. Neither can be considered "rank-and-file" Democrats.