President Bush Should Listen to Secretary Gates Who Says Congress' Timelines Are Useful
As the president prepares to meet with Congressional leaders today to discuss the emergency supplemental he should listen to his own Secretary of Defense, who said that Congress' timelines have been useful in forcing the Iraqi government to make compromises that have been elusive in the past.
While traveling in the Middle East, Defense Secretary Gates said yesterday (and I'm quoting) "The debate in Congress....has been helpful in demonstrating to the Iraqis that American patience is limited. The strong feelings expressed in the Congress about the timetable probably has had a positive impact...in terms of communicating to the Iraqis that this is not an open-ended commitment."
That is what Democratic members of this House have been saying for weeks. It is time to hold the Iraqi government accountable, and pressure them to meet the president's own guidelines.
If President Bush refuses to listen to this Democratic Congress and the leaders that he is meeting with today, it would be nice if he'd at least listen to his Defense Secretary who is saying that our efforts to change the direction of the war in Iraq are having a positive effect.