Democrats On Bush's Press Conference
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV)
"The President today asked the American people to trust him as he continues to follow the same failed strategy that has drawn our troops further into an intractable civil war. The President's policies have failed and his escalation endangers our troops and hurts our national security. Neither our troops nor the American people can afford this strategy any longer.
"Democrats will send President Bush a bill that gives our troops the resources they need and a strategy in Iraq worthy of their sacrifices. If the President vetoes this bill he will have delayed funding for troops and kept in place his strategy for failure."
Former Senator and Democratic Presidential Candidate John Edwards
"If President Bush vetoes funding for the troops, he will be the one who is blocking funding for the troops. Nobody else. Now is not a time to back down; it is a time for strength and conviction. The President's veto threat should only strengthen our resolve to stand by our troops and end this conflict.
"The Congress should make absolutely clear that they are going to stand their ground, supporting the troops and reflecting the will of the American people to end this war. If the President vetoes a funding bill, Congress should send him another bill that funds the troops, brings them home, and ends the war. And if he vetoes that one, they should send him another that does the same thing."
Senator Russ Feingold (D-WI)
“The President says he supports our troops, yet he wants to keep them in the middle of an Iraqi civil war indefinitely. We cannot afford to continue the President’s disastrous Iraq policy, which has weakened our national security and undercut our fight against those who attacked us on 9/11. The bill Majority Leader Reid and I have proposed gives the President the time and the funding he needs to safely redeploy our troops from Iraq by March 31, 2008. By safely redeploying our troops, we can refocus on fighting the global terrorist networks that continue to threaten the lives of Americans.”
Senator John Kerry (D-MA)
"An administration that misled America into war is once again trying to mislead when it comes to supporting our troops. If the President uses his veto, he is the one denying funding for our troops. Our brave American troops deserve nothing less than a policy that is equal to their sacrifice. Congress has done its job, now the Administration needs to do its job and force Iraqi politicians to do their job. Get the funds to our troops, and get Iraqis to achieve the political compromise this misguided escalation was supposed to make possible.
"The President says he sent more troops into Baghdad to give the Iraqi government 'breathing space,' to find a political solution to the civil war. But where is the progress in meeting key political benchmarks - and where is the accountability for squabbling Iraqi politicians? American soldiers should not die while the Iraqis refuse to compromise."
Senator and Presidential Candidate Barack Obama (D-IL)
"The American people and their Congress have said repeatedly that they will no longer accept a war without end in Iraq. If the President chooses to ignore the people's will and play politics with the funding for our troops, Democrats and Republicans will continue to ratchet up the pressure on this Administration to change course in Iraq and bring this war to a responsible end, and I will continue to fight for my plan that would begin a phased withdrawal from Iraq with the goal of bringing all combat troops home by March 31st, 2008."
Senator Robert Byrd (D-WV)
"For the President to claim that the Congress is placing troops in jeopardy is partisan hogwash. This tripe comes on the very day that the White House unveils its plan to rush thousands of troops back to Iraq for yet another tour of duty there, without sufficient time for rest, recovery, and retraining. Congress is not placing our troops at risk; this kind of stress and strain is.
"I hope that the White House will put a little more effort toward responding to the will of this country and a little less toward the tired ‘scare-and-dare’ rhetoric that seems to flow so naturally from the Administration."