WASHINGTON, Sept. 28 (UPI) -- Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates appeared before the Senate Appropriations Committee Thursday in Washington and said President Bush will ask for more money.
Gates testifies on supplemental war funding and said the president plans to ask Congress to fund operations in the war on terror with an additional $42 billion in fiscal 2008, according to the American Forces Press Service. The request brings the total supplement for fiscal 2008 to $190 billion.
“I urge the Congress to approve the complete global war on terror request as quickly as possible and without excessive and counterproductive restrictions,” Gates said, in a statement. “That will help the department manage its expenses and people more effectively and minimize costly reprogramming actions.”
Deputy Secretary of State John D. Negroponte; Marine Gen. Peter Pace, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; and Defense Department Comptroller Tina W. Jonas along with Gates testified before the committee.
The Defense Department asked for $141.7 billion for war on terror operations in February and in July asked for another $5.3 billion to buy mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicles.
On numerous occasions during the hearing, anti-war groups interrupted the testimony forcing the committee chairman to clear the hearing room.
In his closing remarks Gates acknowledged the politics at stake when asking for more funding in a politically unpopular war.
“I know that Iraq and other difficult choices America faces in the war on terror will continue to be a source of friction within the Congress, between the Congress and the president, and in the wider public debate,” Gates said.