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Providing for Consideration of House Concurrent Resolution 301, Pakistan War Powers Resolution

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. POLIS. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of the rule and in opposition to the supplemental funding to escalate the war in Afghanistan.

This Nation does face a very real terrorist threat, but the terrorist threat is a stateless menace, a menace that is not rooted in any one location or has any dominion in one particular area and is, in fact, mobile. In fact, the two countries that our Nation continues to occupy, namely, Iraq and Afghanistan are not significant bases of operation for al Qaeda.

This discussion should absolutely include Pakistan and the border area, particularly between Afghanistan and Pakistan. We have in Pakistan a better partner than we have in Afghanistan with regard to the war on terror. It is not an ideal partner, but it is a better partner than we have found, and I hope our Nation continues to work with the good people of Pakistan and the good forces within the Government of Pakistan to help keep the American people safe and the Pakistani people safe.

We need to continue our efforts to battle terrorists wherever they are. How to focus on this stateless menace? We need to use intelligence gathering, targeted special operations, and a refocused emphasis on homeland security. All these are very costly and expensive and are ongoing and an indefinite occupation of Afghanistan reduces our ability to do the things we need to do to keep the American people safe.

That's why I have consistently opposed the escalation of troops in Afghanistan and will continue to do so today by voting against the supplemental funding. There is a real threat, but the answer is not to continue to indefinitely occupy countries where we only breed more sympathy with those who would do us harm. We must bring the war in Afghanistan to a responsible end. That's why I will vote against the war supplemental, and I call upon my colleagues to join me in helping to protect Americans with a new foreign policy in the region.

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