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WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following the following statement today responding to the President's speech to the U.N.:
"President Bush asked the world's leaders and the people of the Middle East today to join with the United States in support of democracy and freedom, and to choose moderates and reformers over terrorists and extremists.
"Unfortunately, though, the Bush Administration's incompetent policies in Iraq and ham-handed diplomacy have greatly eroded our leadership and credibility in the world, and make it difficult for those he was addressing to believe in the sincerity of his remarks. Without actions to match his rhetoric, the President's speech rings hollow in the ears of a merchant in Baghdad, a mother in Lebanon, or an unemployed young man in the Gaza Strip.
"President Bush must change course in Iraq, redouble our efforts in Afghanistan, and dramatically increase our diplomatic efforts in concert with our allies to address the nuclear threat posed by Iran if we are to regain our credibility and successfully lead the world in support of democracy in the Middle East and in the fight against terrorism."