While the House of Representatives passed $92 billion “emergency” funding mostly for the occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan last week, it also approved California Rep. Barbara Lee’s amendment that bars permanent U.S. military bases in Iraq.

Lee’s amendment was adopted by a voice vote, with no speakers in opposition.

“In adopting this amendment we can take the target off our troops’ backs by sending a strong and immediate signal to the Iraqi people, the insurgents, and the international community that the United States has no designs on Iraq,” Lee said.

Observers speculated that Republican House leaders wanted to avoid a debate and vote on the issue when polls show most of their constituents oppose the war. GOP opposition to the measure may surface when the House and Senate bills are reconciled.

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