WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today after President Bush spoke on the continuing war in Iraq:
“The President’s comments today on the war in Iraq essentially restated – albeit in a more subtle form – what Vice President Cheney said last month: This Administration has every intention of ignoring the will of the American people, who want our troops redeployed in a responsible fashion and who want the Iraqis to take responsibility for the future of their own nation.
“Instead, the President promised to stay the course, despite the clear failure of his policies in Iraq over the last five years, and offered an open-ended commitment with no end in sight.
“The Administration’s rhetoric on so-called ‘progress’ in Iraq simply does not reflect reality. The Green Zone – which houses American military and civilian authorities – is under attack on a nearly daily basis. Security gains seem unsustainable, and dependent on the cooperation of Moqtada al-Sadr. Our military readiness has been severely degraded. Iran’s hand in the region has been strengthened. And meanwhile, the real fight against al-Qaeda along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border does not have sufficient resources.
“It is long past time that we redeploy our troops and demand that the Iraqis take responsibility for their future. Democrats in Congress will continue to work for a new strategy in Iraq, will seek to engage in a diplomatic surge with our regional and international partners, and will reinvigorate our fight against al-Qaeda.
“Our nation is paying an extraordinarily high price for the egregious mistakes made by this Administration in Iraq, as well as its obstinate insistence that we stay the course rather than implementing a strategy designed to succeed.”