Congressman Phil Hare (D-IL) today released the following statement after voting in favor of the U.S. Troop Readiness, Veterans' Health, and Iraq Accountability Act.
"I supported this bill because it is the most realistic, responsible way to bring an end to the tragic war in Iraq.
"President Bush and Republicans in Congress continue to pursue a deadly stay the course' policy that has left our brave men and women refereeing an Iraqi civil war.
"Today, for the first time since this war began, Congress said enough. No more blank checks for the war in Iraq.
"By rubber-stamping President Bush's previous supplemental requests, the former Republican Congress squandered an important opportunity to change the direction of this flawed war.
"I believe I was elected to seize that opportunity. And I believe Congress has a moral responsibility to do so.
"In addition to requiring the Iraqis to meet specific benchmarks for success and beginning to bring our troops home in less than a year, this bill supports and protects our brave men and women by requiring that any service member deployed is battle ready, properly equipped, and received the needed rest between tours of duty.
"And perhaps most importantly, it honors our veterans by investing billions of additional dollars in their health care.
"The days of thrusting our troops into open ended conflicts and then nickel and diming them when they return home are over."