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Lipinski's position on Iraq? More of the same

Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Media contact: Patrick Corcoran (847) 687-7579

For immediate release:

There was not only a lot of discussion about Iraq on the national stagelast week, but also locally in IL-03. Between Sept. 10 and 14, Congressman Dan Lipinski made a four appearances in and around the district to outline his strategy in Iraq. Twice he appeared with U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk, a tier one Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee-targeted Republican incumbent.

Kirk, as you may well know, is the Republican who developed the "suburban agenda."

Democrat Mark Pera had the following to say in regards to Congressman Lipinski's recent comments:

"We heard Congressman Dan Lipinski talk last week about the war, but he has yet to justify why the American people should support an open-ended troop commitment in Iraq.

Let me again make clear my position: I have been advocating for months that our troops need to start coming home now and the drawdown should continue until the withdrawal is completed.

Congressman Lipinski wants more of the same:

Monday: Lipinski partnered with Republican U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk and a panel of experts in Chicago to outline his support for the recommendations of the 10-month-old Iraq Study Group (ISG) Report and said he would consider a proposal that would commit troops to Iraq for at least five years.

Tuesday: Congressman Lipinski appeared on WTTW, again with Kirk, and acknowledged that the surge has not worked, but offered no reason for his continued support of the war.

Wednesday: Lipinski said during a radio broadcast that Democrats needed to wait for Republicans to get on board in order to facilitate progress in Iraq.

Thursday: Congressman Dan Lipinski told a crowd at the Summit VFW Hall that he believes in a long-term commitment of troops to Iraq. Asked to provide a firm timeline for withdrawal, he said he couldn't.

Let's be clear about Congressman Lipinski's voting record:

Congressman Lipinski's Iraq record indicates he voted five times to fund the Iraq war to the tune of more than $260 billion. In 2005, he voted against a measure to begin an immediate withdrawal from Iraq.

This year Lipinski voted for an Iraq supplemental bill without a withdrawal timetable. He was one of only 13 Democrats representing Democratic districts to vote against the McGovern withdrawal proposal.

Now he tells us he'll defer to Republicans, some of whom would be willing to keep troops in Iraq for a decade. In four years, taxpayers have already spent $450 billion on Iraq. We can't afford a "more of the same" Iraq policy. We need real Democratic leadership on this issue.

Our troops are mired in a civil war. The Lipinski-Kirk-Bush Plan does not give us the leverage we need to end our involvement in Iraq. People work best when they are given a clear deadline. The Iraqis will not make any progress until they resolve their political differences and a withdrawal timetable forces them to do that."


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