Newly powerful Democratic lawmakers have called for US troops to begin pulling out of Iraq in the next four to six months.
"The people spoke dramatically, overwhelmingly, resoundingly to change the course in Iraq," Senator Carl Levin, set to take control of the Senate Armed Forces Committee in January, told ABC news on Sunday, saying that the US military commitment there is "not open-ended."
"As a matter of fact, we need to begin a phased redeployment of forces from Iraq in four to six months," Levin said.
Levin, joined by Senator Joe Biden, presumed to return to his role as chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, said the United States should put pressure on the Iraqi government for a political solution to the turmoil there.
"There is only a political solution in Iraq," Levin said.
"We've got to put pressure on them to do what only the Iraqi leaders can do, that is to work out a political solution."
Biden agreed with the four to six month time frame and that US lawmakers would put pressure on Iraqis to settle the violence there politically.
He said lawmakers would "put pressure on the Iraqis to insist upon a means to distribute the oil equitably, make sure there's some form of federalism and deal with the militias and call for an international conference."
Levin and Biden were expected to take leadership roles in the Senate in January after Democrats took control of the US Senate in last week's legislative elections that were widely considered a referendum condemning President George W Bush's policy in Iraq.