Washington, DC—Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made the following statement today in response to reports that the White House would like to limit what the American people are told in the September progress reports on Iraq:
“The White House’s effort to prevent General Petraeus and Ambassador Crocker from testifying openly and candidly before Congress about the situation in Iraq is unacceptable. Not only does it contradict the law President Bush himself signed in May, but it appears to be yet another politically driven attempt to avoid giving Congress and the American people an honest and open assessment of a war we can all see is headed in the wrong direction.
“From the very beginning of this war, the Bush Administration has refused to level with the American people about its flawed policy. It has instead done everything in its power to escape accountability and mislead us about the reality on the ground. The result: an open-ended civil war that has taken nearly 4,000 American soldiers’ lives and an Iraqi government that refuses to take responsibility for its own country.
“If the President is going to continue to ask American soldiers to fight in this civil war, ask taxpayers to spend $10 billion each month to fund this war and ask the American people for patience as he conducts this war, then those closest to the situation on the ground must give Congress and the American people a frank and honest account of this war free of White House political spin.”