Pentagon chief Robert Gates said recently the money for 30,000 additional troops to Afghanistan should be approved by July 4 to avoid the Pentagon having to juggle accounts and possibly lay off civilians while continuing war operations.
Still, it seemed a wonder the new money for the unpopular war got through the House at all, after long arguments among Democratic lawmakers over whether and how to do it. They set up a complicated series of votes in which the non-military spending passed 239-182, while the part that included the war funding passed 215-210.
"I do not believe this war is anything but a fool's errand. If I had my way, I would never bring this to the floor," declared House Appropriations Committee Chairman David Obey, who is in charge of spending legislation in the chamber.
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