Skip to comments.Bush to Request $120B More for War Funding
Posted on 02/02/2006 9:40:14 PM PST by Reagan Man
The Bush administration said Thursday it will ask Congress for $120 billion more for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and $18 billion more for hurricane relief this year.
The White House acknowledges the upcoming requests would cause total spending on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan since Sept. 11, 2001, to soar well past the $400 billion mark, while spending for hurricane relief would top $100 billion.
Details of the requests are not final, but the 2007 budget proposal that President Bush is to submit next week will reflect the totals for planning purposes. The president also will ask Congress to devote another $2.3 billion to prepare for a bird flu epidemic, congressional aides said.
About $70 billion of the new war money will be requested for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan this year, bringing total spending on the two campaigns to $120 billion for the current budget year. The other $50 billion in new war money will be set aside in the 2007 budget for the first few months of the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1. More money will likely be needed in 2007.
The bulk of the funding will go toward military operations, officials said, but the money will also replace damaged, destroyed or worn out equipment. Another part of the request would provide aid to train Iraqi security forces and otherwise combat the insurgency in Iraq.
The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that $320 billion has been spent on Iraq and Afghanistan since the attacks of Sept. 11, including $50 billion that Congress sent Bush in December.
Administration officials said the new figures were estimates and the totals could change slightly before they are officially presented to Congress.
Bryan Whitman, a Pentagon spokesman, said the requests reflect the president's desire to "commit the resources that are necessary to fight and win the war on terrorism."
The requested money would cover troop salaries and benefits, repairing and replacing equipment, supporting U.S. embassies in the two countries and taking on the insurgency. It would cover the costs of continuing to train Iraqi and Afghan security forces and to protect U.S. troops.
Joel Kaplan, deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget, said the $50 billion request for Iraq and Afghanistan for 2007 is a placeholder. He suggested the combined costs of the two campaigns could be different.
"We're still in the process of working out the details," Kaplan said.
According to senior Pentagon officials and documents obtained Thursday by The Associated Press, next week Bush will request a $439.3 billion Defense Department budget for 2007, a nearly 5 percent increase over this year. That request does not include the $50 billion request for Iraq and Afghanistan.
Meantime, Donald Powell, the coordinator for rebuilding the Gulf Coast, confirmed that the administration would request $18 billion for that effort.
The money would push the total federal commitment for rebuilding the hurricane ravaged coast to more than $100 billion, according to administration tallies. That reflects about $68 billion in emergency appropriations, $18.5 billion in available flood insurance funds and the latest $18 billion figure.
The upcoming request is likely to create tensions between Gulf Coast lawmakers pressing to add to it and conservatives insisting that is be at least partially paid for with spending cuts elsewhere in the federal budget.
Powell said it probably would be the last such spending request for the current budget year and that next year's budget would not contain Katrina relief funds. He said a detailed request would go to Congress within 30 days.
Powell said he does not anticipate additional money for the region in the 2007 budget Bush plans to announce Monday.
Powell provided little detail about specifically what the money would be used for, saying it would include money for housing, roads and levees.
"That's a lot of money," he said, referring to the $100 billion.
Gulf Coast lawmakers, as they did in December, are likely to try to add on to the request and push for more aid for flood control and housing.
"We certainly welcome additional federal assistance," said Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La. "But I am highly concerned that the administration's proposal, which lacks details, will put more money into dysfunctional federal bureaucracies like FEMA and won't adequately address urgent needs such as housing, levees and flood protection."
In December, Congress dedicated $29 billion of previously appropriated funds for such purposes as levee repair and construction, emergency funds to compensate homeowners whose hurricane insurance does not cover flood losses, and child care, mental health and other social services.
At that time, Congress exceeded Bush's request by $10.4 billion, mostly by approving $11.5 billion in flexible Community Development Block Grants.
The latest request is also likely to include funding for federal facilities such as military bases and veterans hospitals damaged by the September storm. Congress failed to fully fund several comparable requests last year.
We can always print money and drop it from helicopters.
apparently were in debt by the trillions, apparently we owe everyone, and...that brings my next point...who the hell we owe to? everyone and there mother gets our aid/our money/our troops/our this and that, if you ask me, the world owes us big time,imo
I read here somewhere earlier that other nations who have pledged money haven't made good on thier pledges.
Let's just default on some of our debt to the leaker nations. Start with France, then Germany.
the thing that pisses me off about this is the comments about the oil money paying for the reconstruction, etc. who was allowed to say this?
Mostly individual Americans, as well as banks and insurance companies--anyone who holds government bonds.
Hey, it's only ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY BILLION MORE DOLLARS.
Yeah, another $120Bn for the war and such, yet Chertoff has the audacity to say securing our border and deporting 10~15M ILLEGAL aliens in the U.S. is too impractical and expensive: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1522382/posts
They guys that really stand out are OPEC and the Caribbean Banks.
Thanks for the link. It is interesting seeing what some foreigners own (and $50-100 billion is no small amount of money), but clearly the vast majority is still held by Americans.
No, how about trying:
We don't have to wait for history to show us those petty, small minded little critics who can't offer real workable solutions themselves, but sit back and smugly play the role of Monday Morning Quarterback Genius. They're always with us in the present. They never do a damn thing themselves, just take pot shots at those who are trying to accomplish some worthy.
As the President said in his SOTU speech, "Hindsight is not a strategy".
"It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by the dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions and spends himself in a worthy course; who at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who, at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly; so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory or defeat."
Over the last few years it's been largely foreign governments buying the bonds - China, Japan, India, etc.
Check out the link Tyche posted in 11. It doesn't show who's been buying in recent years, but Americans are still far in the majority.
Hindsight may not be a strategy, but neither is implicitly believing that only the best-case scenario can possibly come true & not planning for anything else. This is simply not the way competent people plan, and yet it seems that the most powerful government on Earth did, indeed, plan that way. Nothing can go wrong, no one will be upset, it will be a ninety-day war & then the Starbucks & Wal-marts will start going up all over Iraq & we can all get rich.
How's that working out for us?
I was a supporter of the Iraq war & I still think it was a good cause, but it has been mishandled in a manner that borders on the deliberately negligent if not criminally negligent. I'm sorry if your R-colored glasses keep you from seeing that.
One of our big reconstruction projects in Iraq was going to be building them health clinics, since their health care system was (is) in such a shambles. We planned to build 180. We've built 4, none of which are open, with no plans to be open anytime soon, & almost no money left to build any more. Where has the money gone? To fight the insurgency, which even Paul Bremer now admits that no one in the administration even suspected might happen. What? How?
It's the same everywhere you look. Mistakes, incompetence, graft, & stupidity. It makes me mad that I really believed and trusted the people in charge of this war ever had a clue what they were doing in anything other than the "sweeping generalization" sense. Bah. It becomes more obvious by the day how wrong I really was.