GOP lawmakers to introduce resolution thanking Iraq troops

A Hunter aide said the resolution has 52 co-sponsors, including seven Democrats, and more are expected to sign on before the resolution is introduced next week.

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President Obama also thanked the troops last month, when the final U.S. soldiers left Iraq, during a ceremony at North Carolina's Fort Bragg. After Obama’s December speech, Hunter, a Marine who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, criticized Obama for not declaring victory in Iraq. 

The word victory — which was absent from most congressional statements on the end of the war — is also not in the Iraq resolution, though it “recognizes the success of the United States Armed Forces in operations against a dangerous and determined enemy.”

Hunter spokesman Joe Kasper said the intention of the resolution was to express gratitude to U.S. troops.

“Regardless of where anyone stands on whether we can claim victory or not, there’s no disagreement on the fact that our military men and women deserve our thanks,” he said.

While it was Democrats who were often critical of the Iraq War as it wore on, some Republicans said last year that Obama shouldn’t have withdrawn all U.S. troops from Iraq.

They argued that withdrawing the troops went against the advice of U.S. generals and created the potential for the country to destabilize. The administration said it had no choice after Iraq would not allow U.S. troops immunity from Iraqi courts.