The draft, which hasn't been in effect since 1973, is best described as mandatory military service and has been used whenever the government deemed it necessary. After the last U.S. draft ended, the government adopted the Selective Service System, which requires 18- to 25-year-old men to register with the government in case they are needed in the event of a military emergency.
As a guest on CBS' Face the Nation
, Rangel said, "There's no question in my mind that this president and this administration would never have invaded Iraq, especially on the flimsy evidence that was presented to the Congress, if, indeed, we had a draft and members of Congress and the administration thought that their kids from their communities would be placed in harm's way."
Rangel has said that his hope in trying to bring back the draft is that members of Congress will be more careful about deciding to become involved in a war if the lives of their children are at stake. However, many people don't believe him; they see his insistent push toward the draft as simply a way to question and condemn President Bush's motivations for going to war with Iraq.
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