WASHINGTON, DC - House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement this afternoon in response to today's announcement by the Defense Department:
"The Defense Department announcement today that all active-duty Army soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan will serve three months longer than the usual standard undercuts the President's claim that Congress is straining the military and keeping soldiers from their families - and exposes it as nothing more than empty political rhetoric.
"Military leaders have made it clear that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have strained our military. That is why Democrats inserted an additional $2.5 billion for troop readiness in the Iraq Accountability Act.
"I commend our brave servicemen and women for their dedication to our country and have no doubt that they will continue to serve with distinction. But it is time for the President to sit down with Democrats for a real discussion on how to forge a new direction in Iraq that protects our nation and our soldiers."