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Friday, February 28, 2003

(note--this post is basically a follow-up to the previous one below)

Silence of the Lambs (Congress, that is)
Naive optimist that I am, I was hoping that Congress would use Wednesday's virtual march as a basis to start speaking out in large numbers against Bush's relentless drive for war. Instead, the silence that Senator Byrd decried over two weeks ago continues, leaving the few brave souls like Byrd, Kennedy, Kucinich, Conyers, and Republican Ron Paul to twist in the wind. Every time I have called Senator Stabenow's office in the past few weeks, I have been told that she opposes the war. I called today and asked why I haven't seen any headlines in the papers about Stabenow's opposition to the war. The staffer reiterated that Stabenow is opposed and is doing everything she can to stop it. The staffer said "I'm not the press--I don't decide what the headlines are." I pressed, asking if Stabenow had held a press conference stating her opposition, and maybe the press was refusing to cover it? She replied something like "There are lots of things going on here right now; I'm not sure what has or hasn't happened."

Well, I just went to Stabenow's official web site and her list of press releases; there is not a word about opposing war. She issues press releases just about every day, sometimes more than one, but not a single one about opposing war in Iraq. Even her response to the State of the Union address carefully avoids the topic. This is doing everything she can? Do we have to leak her position to the press ourselves?

If you live in Michigan, please call Stabenow's office and ask why, if she is actually opposed to the war, she doesn't issue a press release to that effect? If the papers don't carry it, we have their phone numbers. But as far as I can tell, they're not carrying it because she's not saying it. If you live in another state, please check the web sites of your senators and representatives to see if they've taken any official stand on the war. If they haven't, call and encourage them to do so--anti-war, of course. If they have and the papers aren't covering it, call the papers and tell them to get on the ball!

All congressional offices can be reached through the Capitol switchboard: 800-839-5276.