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Obama’s recent decision to seek congressional support for military action in Syria caught many, including some of his own advisers, off guard. The decision seemed not merely to violate to his immediate interests, but also to contravene his own past practices. Rather than aberrational, however, the move reveals some longstanding truths about how the United States goes to war.
Since the Democrats regained control of Congress, the Hill has been alive with the sound of hearings. Congress' earlier slumber and recent awakening should come as no surprise: for the last six decades, the partisan composition of Congress has defined the politics of war. Now facing a Democratic majority, President George W. Bush will find it far more difficult to stay in Iraq.