Green Eye Shades for Peace

Rep. Walter Jones is a conservative -- very conservative -- Republican member of congress from North Carolina.

How conservative? His major legislative initiative over the last several years has been a bill that would allow church pastors to directly endorse candidates for office without endangering their congregation’s tax exempt status. Jones’ evangelical base loves the idea.

Rep. Jim McGovern is a liberal -- very liberal -- Democratic member of Congress from Massachusetts. The National Journal rates him one of Congress’ most progressive members.

Today, in The Washington Post, they join forces to offer a simple path to real deficit reduction: Give peace a chance:

Columbia University professor Joseph Stiglitz told the House Veterans Affairs Committee in September that the costs of Iraq and Afghanistan, including interest payments on the money borrowed for these wars and care for our wounded soldiers and veterans, is likely to total $4 trillion to $6 trillion.

The two continue: “Simply put, we believe the human and financial costs of the war are unacceptable and unsustainable. It is bankrupting us. The United States should devise an exit plan to extricate ourselves from Afghanistan, not a plan to stay there four more years and ‘then we'll see.’”

The November 2010 election in which the Republicans took control of the House has made for some interesting bedfellows and alliances. Who knows? It’s not likely, but also not impossible, that over the next few months, as the withdrawal date for some of our troop’s approaches, peace will emerge as a viable deficit reduction strategy.

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