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WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) made the following remarks today at a press conference with Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid, Assistant Democratic Leader Dick Durbin, Senate Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Carl Levin, and Senator Thomas Carper, as well as former NATO Supreme Allied Commander General Wesley Clark and Sharon Burke, Director of the Third Way National Security Project, to release a new report detailing the Republicans' failure to make America as safe as it should be:
"Republicans have dubbed this month 'Security September,' in an openly cynical attempt to use our nation's security in a political gamble to save their Congressional majority. They believe that they can scare the American people into continuing to support their disastrous policies that have created record deficits, left our country more dependent on foreign oil, given our middle class stagnant wages, and failed to make our nation as secure as it should be. As Republican Tom Kean, the Chairman of the 9/11 Commission, recently stated: 'The government is not doing its job.'
"The House has become known as a deeply partisan place, so I expect the Republican rhetoric about Democrats to be especially distorted and desperate. The fact is, Democrats have been leading our nation in the battle for democracy for over a century. From Wilson, to FDR, to Truman, to Kennedy to Clinton, Democrats have been holding the torch of freedom to light the way for other nations long before the Republican Party joined the fight.
"That is a tradition that we continue here today. This report details how President Bush and the Republican Congress have failed to make us as safe as we should be; how they said one thing and did another. We hope that by pointing out these failures we can force a change in course.
"We agree that our nation is engaged in an epic struggle against terrorism, but we believe that their miscalculations and mistakes, from their failure to capture Osama Bin Laden, to their rosy assumptions about the cost of the Iraq war, to their promise to always properly support our military, to their failure to effectively deal with Iran and North Korea, have made us less safe.
"Democrats have no doubt that America will win the war on terrorism. But we believe that we need a new direction. We believe the American people are ready for one."
Read the full report here.