Gordon urges increased Iraqi support

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Rep. Bart Gordon voted for legislation that calls for the Iraqi government to provide more support to U.S. Armed Forces stationed in Iraq.

The provision, which was included in legislation that authorizes funding for the U.S. Department of Defense, makes U.S.-Iraq negotiations for more financial and other types of support a matter of policy. The U.S. House of Representative approved the legislation Thursday (May 22).

"Our troops are bravely putting themselves in harm's way in Iraq, and it's past time for the Iraqi government to step up its support," said Gordon. "While our military serves in Iraq, they are paying more than double what Iraqi citizens are paying for gas."

The Associated Press reported last month that military units in Iraq pay $3.23 a gallon for gas while Iraqi residents pay just $1.36. The U.S. military in Iraq spends about $153 million on fuel each month, while the Iraqi government expects $70 billion in oil revenues this year.

Gordon has called for Iraqi oil revenue to be used for reconstruction costs of the war.

"Since 2003, the United States has spent nearly $50 billion rebuilding Iraq, and that figure does not include money we have spent to protect our troops there," said Gordon. "We're financing Iraqi reconstruction by piling debt on future generations of Americans, but that has to stop. These oil revenue projections show the Iraqi government clearly has the ability to finance reconstruction.