There is breaking news via Taylor Marsh that Hillary Clinton will support Senator Webb's Resolution demanding that the President seek Congressional approval before any military action against Iran and prohibiting the use of funds for military operations in Iran.
This is significant news because while Hillary Clinton did support the Kyl-Lieberman Resolution calling for the Iranian Revolutionary Guard to be formally labeled a terrorist organization -- and thus providing the President with a potential back door Congressional authorization for yet another war in the Middle East -- her opposition to White House military action against Iran without Congress's sign off cuts a different and healthy direction.
It is essential that the Senate pass a resolution that claws back its Congressional prerogatives to declare war (or not) from the White House and not allow the Executive Branch the ability to further expand the current horrific mess in the Middle East.
Hillary Clinton needs to apply her ascending political weight to the passage of the Webb resolution. It is not enough to just support a resolution and watch it languish. This is a measure that needs to be passed and sent to the White House to rob legitimacy from any conflict Cheney and his followers might engineer in the waning days of this administration.
As Clinton works to pass the Webb resolution, she needs to articulate what mix of incentives and disincentives should be on the table in the kind of direct US-Iran negotiations she has called for.
Thus far, George Bush is the executive force in these narratives -- while Senators just vote one way or another without real responsibility for outcomes.
Hillary Clinton needs to perform like an executive and call together her team to secure Webb's Resolution as a benchmark of her abilities -- and then needs to put on the table for Americans and Iranians to see a policy track that differs from the course the Bush and Ahmadinejad factions have set us on.
-- Steve Clemons publishes the popular political blog, The Washington Note