Since Bush vetoed Congress’ Iraq funding bill – with Congress failing to override the veto – the Dems are in a bit of a tizzy. Some are willing to retreat to the useless and already-proven-pointless benchmarks approach: setting a timetable for the Iraqi government, while continuing an all-military approach toward getting the U.S. out of the war.

But this won’t work. It’ll play into Bush’s hand, and totally betray the will of the American people.

That’s why I really like what RockRichard has to say about a different approach. This approach seemingly gives Bush and the theocons what they want, while dragging them through the mud repeatedly during election season:

Sending the same bill back to the President is a viable option. However, I do not put the President above holding the troops hostage in a war zone without funding so that he can save himself face. Hell, he’s kept us in a war zone for four years just to save face. So this is what I propose: Give the President a “clean” bill with no strings. No deadlines. Exactly what he wants. But the bill should only authorize funding for 45 days. This way, Republicans (usually from rural districts who provide most military recruits, and are most personally affected by the war) who are facing reelection in the other election next Fall will have to go on the record supporting the President and his failed policy. We continue the cycle. Every 45 days we pass a withdrawal bill, and if the President vetoes it, we send a “clean” 45 day bill. Repugs will grow tired of the President dragging their names through the mud. I assure you, we will only need to this twice before we have enough votes to override a veto.

Yes, he resorts to some name-calling, but I like the concept: every 45 days, force the Republican theocons to justify and re-justify their support of the war, and during an election season where being seen as a supporter of the Iraq war is an increasing liability.

It might be worth a shot.