House Appropriations Won’t Mark Up War Supplemental This Week
The House Appropriations Committee will not mark up the president’s fiscal 2007 war supplemental request this week.
Congressional rules require that members of the panel receive a copy of the bill “at least three calendar days,” excluding weekends and holidays, in advance of the markup date. Since Democrats have not yet finalized the supplemental, any finished text would not be circulated in time for a markup by week’s end.
As a result, the Democrats’ discussions on how to fund troops on the ground in Iraq will continue as they also weigh reversing the course of President Bush’s throughout the week.
The Senate Appropriations Committee is expected to mark up the supplemental on March 20.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates has urged Congress to approve the spending request before mid-April or warned the Pentagon may cut other defense spending to cover the costs of the war in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The request is expected to top $100 billion with the bulk of the money going toward the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Lawmakers are also eyeing adding money to the bill for drought relief for Midwestern farmers and funding for a children’s health insurance program.