Newspaper Column: A Historic Vote Against War




Nicoson, William J.

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The Connection


Last Wednesday the U.S. House of Representatives made history. By a vote of 213 to 213, the House declined to support the air bombardment of Serbia initiated by President Clinton and the NATO alliance. Never before has either house of Congress failed to support military action ordered abroad by a President of the United States. House Minority Leader Richard Gephardt offered the resolution of support, believing it would pass easily. When it failed, he chastised House Republicans for partisanship. The White House lightly dismissed the vote as a “tie on standing still” rather than a rebuke of the President. Neither Mr. Gephardt nor the White House mentioned any of the 26 House Democrats who voted against Mr. Gephardt’s resolution. The vote of any one of them was all the President needed. How can this challenge to the Commander-in-Chief be explained? What motivated House members of both parties who voted against the President? What were they thinking?


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Clinton, William J. (William Jefferson), 1946-, Serbia, War, Gephardt, Richard, U.S. House of Representatives