FYI: Obama Statement on Iraq Spending Package Vote
- Obama Statement on Iraq Spending Package Vote
October 17, 2003
I would have voted no on the President's $87 billion supplemental
appropriation for Iraq. This is only another installment in a
continuing drain of American lives and American resources in support
of a deeply flawed policy. And it comes at a time when communities
across our own country are suffering from a lack of needed investment
in jobs, education and health care.
I fully support our troops and would do anything to protect their
safety. But the President has cynically tied the military funding to
the $20 billion for reconstruction, effectively holding our troops
hostage to an aid package rife with patronage and overspending. That
may be good politics, but it is meant to mask bad policy.
I was the only candidate for the U.S. Senate in Illinois to publicly
oppose the invasion of Iraq, because I feared it would not accomplish
our objective of reducing terror, it would hurt our relations with
our allies and undermine our ability to meet our challenges at home.
All of those fears have come true. The bill is mounting every day,
payable in American dollars and lives. And the President offers no
plan to end it, or to rein in his political supporters who are
benefiting from this spending spree.
We need to turn over to Iraqis the responsibility for policing their
nation, and turn over the rebuilding of that country to an
international administration. With three million jobs lost, 44
million without health insurance and poverty levels rising
particularly among children and minorities Americans are right to
wonder why our mounting problems here at home don't merit the
attention this Administration is showering on Iraq.