Reacting to President Bush’s veto of the Iraq supplemental bill, Speaker Nancy Pelosi noted this evening that Bush once believed it was important for a president to lay out a timetable:
The president wants a blank check. The Congress is not going to give it to him. The president said, in his comments, he did not believe in timelines, and he spoke out very forcefully against them. Yet in 1999, on June 5th, then-Governor Bush said, about President Clinton, “I think it’s important for the president to lay out a timetable as to how long they will be involved and when they would be withdrawn.” Despite his past statements, President Bush refuses to apply the same standard to his own activities. Standards — that’s the issue.
If the president thinks that what is happening on the ground in Iraq now is progress, as he said in his comments tonight, then it’s clear to see why we have a disagreement on policy with him. I agree with Leader Reid. We look forward to working with the president to find common ground, but there is great distance between us right now.