ThinkProgress catches Bush hyping a false deadline for Congress to pass the Iraq supplemental spending bill. The real deadline -- late-May at the earliest, mid-July at the latest -- will give Congress ample time to negotiate a deal with the White House. So every time you hear Bush using the troops as props between now and then, just know that he's lying through his teeth.
The Bush administration has been trying to force Congress to abandon its support for an Iraq withdrawal time line by claiming that a “clean” Iraq spending bill must be signed by mid-April or U.S. troops will suffer. The Hill reported, the Pentagon and the White House have been “sounding alarms and sketching worst-case scenarios if Congress does not pass the 2007 supplemental by April 15.”
A new report from the Congressional Research Service makes clear that Bush’s deadline is completely fabricated:
In a memo to the Senate Budget Committee dated Wednesday, the congressional analysts said the Army has enough money in its existing budget to fund operations and maintenance through the end of May — about $52.6 billion. If additional transfer authority is tapped, subject to Congress approving a reprogramming request, the Army would have enough funds to make it through nearly two additional months, or toward the end of July. Using all of its transfer authority, the Army could have as much as $60.1 billion available. Read more...