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Sweet blog special: Bush issues another war funding request. Democratic frame (via Rahm) Bush is yes to war, no to child health insurance.

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HIGHLAND PARK, ILL.--The Bush administration once again faces a showdown with Congress over Iraq war funding.

The Bush funding request has money for other causes--the Afghanistan fighting, payments to military personnel who are facing multiple deployments and money to Syria, Jordan and Lebanon to help deal with Iraqi refugees.

This $184 billion request comes as Bush vetoed the SCHIP--health insurance for children bill. The Democrats are linking the two issues. House Democratic Caucus Chairman Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D-Ill.) framed the response this way: "Unfortunately, President Bush appears content to leave our troops in Iraq and our children without the health care they need.”

for details on Bush plan, click below...

THE WHITE HOUSE

Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release October 22, 2007

2008 War Funding Request

Protecting The Force, Equipping Troops, Strengthening National Security

Today, President Bush transmitted to Congress an update of funding requirements in 2008 to continue the Global War on Terror and address other urgent national security needs. The request ensures that U.S. military forces will remain protected, well-equipped, and ready for future operations; supports ongoing military and intelligence operations in Iraq and Afghanistan; provides care for Wounded Warriors and their families; supports diplomacy and development in Iraq and Afghanistan; and provides economic, security, and humanitarian assistance for urgent needs around the world.

In February, the President requested and Congress budgeted for $145 billion in war costs, which reflected the best estimate available at that time of the full costs of the war in 2008. In response to a bipartisan call, the Administration included the request in the President's FY08 budget. Detailed justifications for FY07 and FY08 were provided to Congress and the public on government websites.

Congress should listen to the recommendations of our military commanders and fully fund our troops. Today's request is based upon the findings of General David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker. In September, they reported that conditions on the ground in Iraq had improved, but more funding was needed to continue this progress. In testimony before Congress, Defense Secretary Robert Gates provided lawmakers with the expected total cost of the war for 2008.

2008 War on Terror Request ($ in billions)
Pending Request
Amendment
Total

Department of Defense (includes classified activities)
$147.0
$42.3
$189.3

Department of State and other international operations
3.3
3.6
6.9

Other agencies
0.2
--
0.2

Total
$150.5
$45.9
$196.4

Ensuring Our Armed Forces Remain Well-Equipped And Trained

Protecting Our Forces: The President is committed to protecting our men and women in uniform. The amendment requests additional funding of $14.1 billion.

$11 billion to procure, deliver, and maintain more than 7,200 mine-resistant ambush-protected (MRAP) vehicles.
$3.1 billion to enhance efforts to protect U.S. forces from snipers and improvised explosive devices (IED).

Supporting Operational And Intelligence Activities

Ongoing Military Operations: The President is committed to providing our troops with the resources and equipment they need.

$8.1 billion for ongoing military and intelligence requirements in the Global War on Terror, including costs related to the increase in troop levels in Iraq and the announced plan for a staged withdrawal of five Brigade Combat Teams by July 2008.
$1 billion to expand the Iraqi security forces and improve their ability to conduct independent counterinsurgency operations. This request supplements a substantial investment by the Iraqi Government.
$1 billion to increase the number of trained Army National Guard and Reserve units, permitting shorter deployments.
$242 million for the Commander's Emergency Response Program in Afghanistan, which allows commanders to address urgent needs of local communities.
$762 million for increased fuel costs.

Providing Adequate Infrastructure: $1 billion for military construction projects in theater, including airfield improvements, roads, hardening of buildings, and other mission critical facilities that protect U.S. forces and support their operations.

Improving Strategic Readiness: $5.4 billion to fill Army equipment shortfalls and to enhance training of next-to-deploy units.

Repairing And Replacing Damaged Equipment: $8.8 billion to refurbish or replace worn-out or damaged equipment in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Caring For Servicemembers And Their Families

Honoring The Sacrifice: The President is committed to ensuring that servicemembers and their families receive the best possible care and support.

$504 million for a sustainable medical and rehabilitation system to care for Wounded Warriors returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.
$416 million to accelerate the transition from the Walter Reed Army Medical Center to the National Military Medical Center, Bethesda and the new Ft. Belvoir Army Community Hospital.
$840 million to enhance support for servicemembers and their families affected by repeated and continued deployments.

Supporting Diplomacy And Development In Iraq And Afghanistan

Supporting And Expanding Our Diplomatic Presence In Iraq And Afghanistan: $561 million to address the additional extraordinary security and operating costs associated with supporting U.S. diplomatic and reconstruction activity in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Providing For Investment In Iraq: $25 million to initiate a new enterprise fund that will help Iraqi-owned firms access the capital that they need, and $100 million to re-start state-owned enterprises in Iraq to create jobs.

Strengthening Afghan Self-Reliance:

Supporting critical reconstruction needs: $50 million for roads, $115 million for emergency power projects in Kabul and surrounding areas, and $5 million to help the Afghan government implement Reconstruction Opportunity Zones to encourage export growth in support of economic development.
Improving democratic process and governance: $100 million to support national elections in 2009, and $225 million to help build the governance capacity of the Afghans to extend the reach of the central government into the provinces and improve governance at the local level.

Responding To Needs Of Displaced Iraqis: $160 million to provide basic health services and education for Iraqi refugees in Syria, Jordan, and Lebanon; and $80 million to provide emergency relief supplies, health care, and water and sanitation infrastructure to people displaced in Iraq.

Support For Pakistan And West Bank

$375 million for the West Bank to help the Palestinian Authority resolve its fiscal crisis and enhance Palestinian security capabilities.
$60 million to help the government of Pakistan improve economic and social conditions in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas.

Darfur And Southern Sudan

$724 million to support the new UN peacekeeping mission to improve security, support the peace process, and facilitate the delivery of humanitarian assistance to Darfur.
$70 million to support elections in Sudan in 2009, an important element to the Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the North and South.

Moving Forward With North Korea On Denuclearization

$106 million to provide Heavy Fuel Oil or an equivalent value of other assistance to North Korea on an "action-for-action" basis in support of the Six Party Talks in return for actions taken by North Korea on denuclearization.

Mexico And Central America

$500 million for Mexico and $50 million for Central American countries, in their unprecedented cooperative efforts to address common threats to our nations by combating transnational crime and drug trafficking.

Humanitarian Assistance

$350 million for emergency food aid needs mainly in Africa and $35 million to assist Palestinian refugees.

=====================================
Rahm Emanuel statement....

EMANUEL STATEMENT ON PRESIDENT’S WAR FUNDING REQUEST

Washington, D.C. – House Democratic Caucus Chairman Rahm Emanuel issued the following statement as President Bush prepared to formally request an additional $42.3 billion from Congress for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The President’s funding request now totals $184 billion. Emanuel’s statement is below:

“President Bush has made his priorities clear: health care for children is too expensive, but more of the same in Iraq is worth billions in debt. The President’s $184 billion war funding request could provide health care for 10 million children of low-income working families - with money to spare. Unfortunately, President Bush appears content to leave our troops in Iraq and our children without the health care they need.”

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1 Comment

I am sick to death of hearing the fake opposition Dems in Congress moan about not having enough votes to end the war in Iraq. They give lip service to the myth that the only way to end the war is to write a bill saying "the war is now over" and send it to Bush for a prompt veto, then override the veto. They then throw up their hands, saying "Well, as you can see, we don't have the votes to override any veto, so there's no way to end the war. Sorry folks."
This is disingenious and vividly illustrates who the Dems are really serving: the establishment, not their constituents.
Here's how to end the war: No bill specifically ending the war is even necessary. Remember those supplemental funding bills the Cheney regime has to constantly ask for, to continue funding the Iraq war piecemeal instead of in yearly lump sums attached to the actual defense budget? That's the achilles' heel of their war effort. The next time Bush asks for another $80 billion or whatever to keep the Iraq bloodbath going, all the Democrats have to do to end the war is to say: NO. To say "We won't allocate one more penny for your illegal war". Last I checked the Dems have a wafer-thin majority in both houses. With no Dems voting for the next spending bill it won't be passed and thus it won't make it to Bush's desk for signing. Bush (and especially his puppetmaster Cheney) may have concentrated an inordinate amount of power in the hands of the executive branch, but even they can't send spending bills to their own desk. That necessarily has to come from Congress. If it never reaches his desk he can't sign it, and will have 2 choices: 1.pull the troops out while there is still enough money left in the pipeline so to speak to allow an orderly withdrawl (and anyone who has five or more brain cells knows that the money isn't going to run out the next day, that's a non-issue that the right wing tries to use as a scare tactic but it is ridiculously dumbed down and simply not true; they don't wait until they have $5 left before asking for another supplemental OK?); or 2.don't pull them out right away, and leave them to wither on the vine in Iraq until the money DOES completely run out and they have to withdraw from Iraq chaotically, burning their supplies and vehicles. Either way the war will end pretty soon if the Dems refuse to vote on supplementals. They don't have to write a bill saying they are cutting off funding; this is only a fig leaf so they can pretend to be doing something to end the war when all they are doing is purposely spinning their wheels. All they have to do is to NOT VOTE ON SUPPLEMENTALS. Pretty effing simple. The people NOW need to DEMAND in so many words that if the Democrats are a genuine opposition party that they will carry out the will of the people and NOT VOTE on supplementals. If they are a fake opposition party as I feel they are, and are acting not in the people's interest but playing for the same team as the Republicans, then continue with more of the same hand-wringing and impotent nonbinding resolutions that resolve nothing. Decision time Democrats. Which are you? Genuine? Or fake opposition? I think I already know the answer to that one but why don't you surprise me?

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on October 22, 2007 1:13 PM.

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