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WASHINGTON, DC – House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today after Republican Members struck more than $500 million in critical military funding from the Military Quality of Life and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2007. The funding that was struck from the bill was specifically requested by President Bush:
“The Republican Party is at war with itself, and today the men and women in the United States military unfortunately were caught in the crossfire.
“Less than 48 hours ago, House Republicans passed a budget that betrays our nation’s values and fails to meet our priorities. For example, that Republican budget – at a time of record deficits and exploding national debt – calls for an additional $228 billion in tax cuts over five years while under-funding crucial priorities such as military construction.
“In an attempt to address this matter, President Bush specifically requested an additional $507 million for military construction and that funding was designated as an ‘emergency’ so that it would not count against the spending caps in the Republican budget that passed early Thursday morning. Today, $507 million – which was requested by the President to support our troops – was struck from the Military Quality of Life and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Act by Members of the President’s own party.
“This entire episode is the direct result of the Republican Party’s irresponsible economic policies, which put tax cuts above all other national priorities – even our men and women in uniform and our national security. The Republican Party, after adding more than $3 trillion to the national debt over the last 64 months, still clings to the reckless and discredited notion that we do not have to pay for what we buy. Today, it is the United States military that paid the price for the Republican Party’s misguided priorities.”