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Hare Votes to Pass Another Iraq Bill Demanding Accountability

Press Release

Location: Washington, DC

Hare Votes to Pass Another Iraq Bill Demanding Accountability

Congressman Phil Hare (D-IL) today released the following statement after voting in favor of the U.S. Troop Readiness, Veterans' Care, Katrina Recovery, and Iraq Accountability Appropriations Act of 2007.

"Earlier this month, Congress sent President Bush a compromise bill that fully funds our troops in the field, holds the Iraqi government accountable to the Administration's own benchmarks, and allows for a responsible redeployment of American forces.

"Presented with that compromise, the President opted for confrontation—issuing just his second veto in over six years in office.

"Today, the House of Representatives again passed a compromise bill that funds immediate operations in Iraq and requires the President to submit reports to Congress in July detailing the progress the Iraqi government has made in achieving benchmarks before receiving any additional funding.

"With his threatened veto, it appears the President will again choose confrontation over compromise.

"In April, over 100 U.S. troops were killed in Iraq, capping the deadliest six-month period since the war began.

"Despite the increasing violence there, the President seems intent on further digging in his heels on a failed policy that has placed targets on the backs of our troops as they bravely attempt to referee a civil war.

"Every single day, the President further isolates himself by refusing to listen to an American public fed up with the carnage there.

"Yesterday, a group of Republicans met with President Bush to decry the lack of progress in Iraq.

"I am hopeful that an impassioned and patriotic plea from his own party will help persuade the President to seek common ground.

"Today, the President said that he now accepts the idea of benchmarks and wants to work with Congress to that end.

"Let me be clear—he had that chance once already, and a veto of today's legislation would be his second rejection of benchmarks in as many bills.

"While the President's words appear to have changed slightly, real progress can only be achieved if his actions follow suit.

"The question is this: Will the President work with Congress to bring a responsible end to the war in Iraq—or will he continue to pursue a failed strategy that is harming our troops and our national security.

"Democrats in Congress are committed to demanding accountability from this President. We want to work with him—but the days of a blank check for the war in Iraq are over."

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