Bush Threatens to Veto the New Iraq BillMay 9, 2007 - by Donny Shaw
The President is being picky about how he wants all that additional war money he requested. Congress is barely beginning to regroup after the last bill was vetoed, and already the President is saying he will veto their new plan, details of which were just released yesterday.
The plan, known as the short leash, would provide funds in two separate chunks designed to last two months each. In order to get the second chunk of funds released, the President would have to report back to Congress in July about what progress, if any, had been made in Iraq. There would be no troop withdrawal language attached to any of the funding.
>President Bush would veto a bill drafted by House Democratic leaders that would fund the Iraq war only into the summer months, his spokesman said Wednesday.
>And the Pentagon said the funding plan would be “massively disruptive.”
>"There are restrictions on funding and there are also some of the spending items that were mentioned in the first veto message that are still in the bill," White House press secretary Tony Snow said on Air Force One traveling with Bush.
>Asked directly if Bush would veto the House bill in its current form, Snow said, “Yes.”
A new CNN poll indicates that 54 percent of Americans opposed Bush’s veto of the last bill. The poll also shows that 61 percent want the withdrawal timetable dropped from the next bill “in favor of benchmarks for the Iraqi government to meet to maintain American support,” which is exactly what Democrats are planning.
With the numbers clearly showing public support, Congress is most likely going to move forward with the bill, testing the President and wearing down on him some more. As time goes by, the President’s position on Iraq funding has becomes ever less aligned with the public, and when dealing with an issue as important and unpopular as the war in Iraq, being on the wrong side could have massive negative implications for the future of the Republican party as a whole.