Washington, DC– Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued this statement as the Conference Committee announced its report on the supplemental appropriations bill:
The agreement reached between the House and the Senate rejects the President’s failed policies in Iraq and his open-ended commitment to keep American troops there indefinitely and forges a new direction for a responsible end to the war.
If the President follows through on his veto threat, he will be the one who has failed to provide our troops and our veterans with the resources they need and it will be the President who has rejected the benchmarks he announced in January to measure success in Iraq. The bill ensures our troops are combat-ready before they are deployed to Iraq, provides our troops the resources and health care they deserve in Iraq and here at home, and responsibly winds down this war.
Iraqis must take the tough and necessary steps to secure their nation and to forge political reconciliation. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates understands the value of timelines in motivating the Iraqi Government to accomplish these goals. The President should carefully consider the views of his Secretary of Defense in making a judgment on this legislation.
An overwhelming majority of Americans, bipartisan majorities in both houses of Congress, military experts and the Iraq Study Group believe that a responsible end to the war best advances our national security needs. It is now up to the President to make a decision: continue to stay his failed course or join us to give our troops a strategy for success.