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Supplemental Spending

President Bush formally requested an additional $42 billion on Monday to continue the Iraq War, growing the administration’s supplemental war spending demand to $189 billion. [IMGCAP(1)]

“The majority of the supplemental funding … is for day-to-day military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq,” Bush said Monday. The administration request also includes $6.9 billion for various State Department programs, putting the total request at $196 billion.

In his speech, Bush urged Congress to consider the funding request “promptly,” while he also called on the House and Senate to conference on both the fiscal 2007 Defense and Veterans Affairs appropriations bills.

House Appropriations Chairman David Obey (D-Wis.) has said he will not consider the supplemental spending bill until at least January unless Bush agrees to drastically alter the war’s current projection.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) criticized Bush’s funding request Monday, echoing Democratic comparisons of domestic funding needs and war spending, and she called for an end to the war.

“For the cost of less than 40 days in Iraq, we could provide health care coverage to 10 million children for an entire year,” Pelosi said in a statement. “The colossal cost of this war grows every day — in lives lost, dollars spent, and to our reputation around the world. The American people long ago rejected the President’s planned 10-year occupation of Iraq and want the Administration to provide a concrete plan to bring our troops home.”

— Jennifer Yachnin