Messiah: I was too gutless principled to vote on the "support Petraeus" resolution

One of three senators to miss the vote this afternoon. Busy with campaign stuff? Nope, it was by choice:

“The focus of the United States Senate should be on ending this war, not on criticizing newspaper advertisements,” Obama says. “This amendment was a stunt designed only to score cheap political points while what we should be doing is focusing on the deadly serious challenge we face in Iraq. It’s precisely this kind of political game-playing that makes most Americans cynical about Washington’s ability to solve America’s problems. By not casting a vote, I registered my protest against this empty politics. I registered my views on the ad itself the day it appeared.

Obama goes on to say, “All of us respect the service of General Petraeus and all of our brave men and women in uniform. The way to honor that service is to give them a mission that is responsible, not to vote on amendments like the Cornyn amendment while we continue to pursue the wrong policy in Iraq.”

Keep that very principled opposition to time-wasting resolutions in mind as we go forward the next week or two with the Iraq debate, knowing per the failure of Webb’s amendment last night that every last Democratic timetable measure is doomed to fail. Every last one of them will be voted on anyway, though, because it serves the Democrats’ interest to remind Americans where the GOP stands on the war. They’re practically useless, in other words, but politically useful. Just like this measure, which Obama couldn’t be bothered with.

Exit question: How can it be that on a day when Hillary chose to line up with against David Petraeus, she still comes off better than Obama by virtue of the fact that she at least had the balls to go on the record? Amateurs.

Update: Here’s the latest extremely important Iraq measure that didn’t have a holy hope in hell of passing to come to the floor this afternoon. Did Obama dignify it by voting? Of course he did.