DeFazio Votes for a Bill to End Iraq War, Refocus Military Efforts in Afghanistan
Congressman Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) voted today in favor of the U.S. Troop Readiness, Veterans' Health and Iraq Accountability Act, also known as the Emergency Supplemental bill.
The bill, H.R. 1591, passed the House today by a vote of 218 to 212.
"This bill will end the war in Iraq," DeFazio said. "This is the first enforceable challenge to the President's plan to escalate and continue a stay-the-course, open-ended commitment to a war, a war that was launched with massive deception, and an unnecessary war. With the passage of this bill, Democrats are beginning to impose accountability on the Bush administration's open-ended commitment in Iraq. In establishing a binding timeline, this legislation brings us closer to bringing our troops home."
Under the bill, U.S. troops would have to be withdrawn beginning no later than March 2008 and be fully withdrawn by August 2008. If the Iraqi government fails to achieve specific benchmarks, U.S. troops would be withdrawn by the end of this year.
"This legislation will also refocus the war on terror to Afghanistan, where al-Qaeda and the Taliban are gaining strength," DeFazio said. "The diversion of military and intelligence assets to an unnecessary war in Iraq undermined the fight against al-Qaeda, and this bill will begin to reverse that. It also provides needed funding for health care for military personnel, prevents the U.S. from establishing permanent bases in Iraq, prohibits torture by U.S. personnel, cracks down on wasteful no-bid contracts and closes critical gaps in our defenses here at home."
To watch a video of Rep. DeFazio speaking on the House floor about the Emergency Supplemental bill, please click here.