View Full Version : Dictator Bush: Don't "Test My Will" On Iraq

04-27-2007, 10:29 PM
Bush to Democrats: do not 'test my will' on Iraq


Published: Friday April 27, 2007

President George W. Bush warned Democrats Friday not to "test my will" by passing new legislation on a US troop pullout from Iraq after he vetoes a bill passed by Congress this week.

Bush invited Democrats and leaders of his Republican Party to discuss a way out of their standoff soon after he strikes down the bill, which ties 124 billion dollars in war funds to a withdrawal that would start on October 1.

"And if the Congress wants to test my will as to whether or not I'll accept the timetable for withdrawal, I won't accept one," he told a news conference at his retreat in Camp David, Maryland, alongside Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

"So if they want to try again that which I have said was unacceptable, then of course I'll veto it," Bush said.

"But I hope it doesn't come to that. I believe we can work a way forward. And I think we can come to our senses and make sure that we get the money to the troops in a timely fashion," he said.

Bush could veto the legislation early next week with the aim of quickly getting a new bill on his desk acceptable to both sides as soon as possible to provide the money for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The bill, which passed 218-208 in the House on Wednesday and 51-46 in the Senate on Thursday and has a non-binding target of completing the pullout by March 31, 2008, comes as public support for the four-year-old war has plunged.

The bill is also on its way to Bush's desk as more troops deploy to Iraq as part of his temporary troop "surge" plan to quell violence in Iraq, a strategy that will increase the number of US soldiers from 145,000 to 160,000.

Iraq was a central theme of the first presidential debate Thursday between eight Democrats vying to succeed Bush, more than 18 months before the November 2008 election.

"Congress has voted, as of today (Thursday), to end this war. And now we can only hope that the president will listen," Democratic frontrunner Senator Hillary Clinton said during the debate in Orangeburg, South Carolina.

Her Senate colleague and chief rival for the Democratic Party's nomination, Barack Obama, criticized the "disastrous conditions that we've seen on the ground in Iraq."

"The American people have said, Republicans and Democrats, that it's time to end this war," Obama said.

Back in Washington, Democratic leaders, who took control of Congress in January after elections marked by voter anger at the war, urged Bush to change course in Iraq.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said the bill "sets us on a new course, away from a civil war with no end in sight toward a responsible phased redeployment that holds Iraqis accountable."

"If the president refuses to change direction, America risks being bogged down in Iraq for years, not months," Reid said Thursday.

"For a president that took the country to war under false pretenses, he now needs the courage to admit his policies have failed and work with us to bring the war to a responsible end. This bill gives him a path forward."

The bill could reach Bush on May 1, the fourth anniversary of his 2003 speech on the deck of the US aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln, in which he declared "victory" in Iraq under a giant "Mission Accomplished" banner.

White House spokeswoman Dana Perino suggested that Bush's Democratic critics had dragged out the legislative process in order to tie it to the speech, calling that a "ridiculous PR (public relations) stunt" and "the height of cynicism."

The "Mission Accomplished" speech, in which he declared "major combat" over, has dogged Bush as the symbol of what critics charge is his excessive optimism about the conflict.

04-28-2007, 06:16 AM
And don't forget....