The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Tuesday, October 26, 2004  

The Bigger the Mess, the Greater the Cost

Just so you know, and I'm speaking to you, the undecided voter concerned about the war and budget deficits, "staying the course" is a costly, to say nothing of dangerous, choice.

The Washington Post reports ("Increase in War Funding Sought," by Jonathan Weisman and Thomas E. Ricks):

The Bush administration intends to seek about $70 billion in emergency funding for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan early next year, pushing total war costs close to $225 billion since the invasion of Iraq early last year, Pentagon and congressional officials said yesterday. [...]

The new numbers underscore that the war is going to be far more costly and intense, and last longer, than the administration first suggested. [...]

A $70 billion request would be considerably larger than lawmakers had anticipated earlier this year. After the president unexpectedly submitted an $87 billion request for the Iraq and Afghanistan efforts last year, many Republicans angrily expressed sticker shock and implored the administration not to surprise them again.

Timing is everything. Remember: The upcoming request is in addition to the $25 billion Congress allocated for Iraq and Afghanistan for fiscal 2005. So it was either $25 billion or $95 billion, but who's counting? Is anyone counting?

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