The General Accounting Office report presented before the House Armed Services Committee today represents one perspective and a limited depiction of improving conditions in Iraq.  The 18 benchmarks outlined in the report are important goals; however they do not reflect the progress being made on the ground and therefore fail to paint an entire picture.

The House Armed Services Committee and Congress should be committed to receiving and reviewing all the facts and reports before making any decisions that will affect the security of our troops in Iraq and their ability to protect American families here at home.  General David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker will present their report next week.  I look forward to hearing what our top commander in the field and our top diplomat have to say about the many changes occurring in Iraq.

It is vital that we remember that democracies do not happen over night.  The history of our own country is one of many challenges that have helped shape our nation.  We must ensure that our decision-making on an issue as important as the war in Iraq is made fully informed and dedicated to success.