Bush's Empty Threats

April 15th. Yes, it’s tax day, but we all want to forget that. The other significance of that date? Bush really seems serious about focusing on it as the day “we will run out of money in Iraq.” He is playing politics with the war, just as he has since he started the conflict. Instead of working with Congress and finding a solution, Bush thinks he will have a Clinton-Gingrich budget-shutdown moment.

Of course, this is the administration that told troops “you go to war with the equipment you have” and proclaimed our veterans’ care was “fully funded.” Right. This is the administration that fired a general when he told the American people that the war might cost as much as $200 billion. Hmm. This is the administration and president who have been accused by the military and many Republicans of trying to wage a war “on the cheap.” Please.

And now Bush thinks he can blame Democrats for not providing the funding? The Congress has voted for everything the president has asked for, every time he has asked for it. In some cases they have added more than he requested for veterans and body armor. Congress, with these supplementals, will have authorized a grand total of $564 billion for the war. We are now spending $8.4 billion in Iraq every month — that’s $194,444 every minute.

And now the non-partisan Congressional Research Service tells Congress that with funds already appropriated we have until July before we have funding difficulties. So Bush will have his escalation, no matter what the Congress or the people have to say. And, oh yes, by the way, last year Bush waited to sign the supplemental until June 16.